Jerkoffs 2013: Semi-Finals Preview

 

Chalk so far... will that continue through the semi-finals?

Chalk so far… will that continue through the semi-finals?

Welcome to the Semi-Final round of the Jerkoffs.  So far the Jerkoffs have been pure chalk as JPOWW’s 3rd seeded squad made easy work of C-Lion’s team that suffered some of the worst luck imaginable and the Captain’s steady collection of point scorers were the beneficiary of the injury to Silverfox star Adrian Peterson.  This week, the top 4 teams in the league square off for a shot at the JFFL title in Week 16.  Of the remaining contenders, Frenchy has won the JFFL title twice and the Captain and Dazzle have each reigned supreme once.  The title remains elusive for JPOWW, but this may be the year that all of that changes as he sports the highest scoring remaining squad by a large margin.

Dazzle (1) v. Captain (4)

In a battle of two teams who led their respective divisions for much of the season and scored around the same amount of overall points, with a slight edge going to the Captain, the Dazzle is favored by a 31.5 point margin by Yahoo! supercomputers.  Neither of these teams finished the season on a particularly high note.  Dazzle lost 2 of his last 4 games and, save a Week 13 blowout of the OMD, nearly backed into a Kenny’s Division title.  The Captain lost 3 of his last 4 games, losing out on the Blacktop Seizure Division crown in the process.  He has some momentum after a Wildcard victory over Silverfox, but that may not be enough to carry him to an upset in the Semi-Finals.

Dazzle has a series of favorable matchups that may pay dividends for him this week as newly healthy Roddy White and Andre Johnson face little resistance from the poor secondary play of Washington and Indianapolis respectively.  Likewise, special teams may play a significant role in Dazzle’s scoring this week as the Seattle Seahawks visit the turnover prone New York Giants in a matchup that could lead to astronomical scores by the Seattle defense and fantasy’s top kicker, Steven Hauschka.  This week, though, really comes down the Thursday Night battle between Denver and San Diego.  Dazzle has team leader Peyton Manning as well as Eric Decker, Knowshon Moreno, and midseason addition Antonio Gates all slated to provide him with a jump start on Semi-Final Round.  We all know how Thursday night games tend to be sloppy as players are unrested and underprepared.  While both the Chargers and Broncos fantasy assets face favorable defensive matchups, this could come back to bite Dazzle as 40% of his roster will be deployed in a Thursday Night game which, as we know, can tend to be sloppy.  And in case you’re wondering, the temperature is expected to be approximately 22 degrees with winds between 10-15 mph.

The Captain’s stable of reliable producers will be met with average defensive matchups in the Semi-Final round save Desean Jackson, who has a favorable matchup with whoever the Vikings slap a uniform on.  The Captain does have a couple of injury concerns as Frank Gore’s ankle could always flare up (although he ran well last week) and Maurice Jones-Drew is listed as questionable with a hamstring injury.  The Captain would benefit greatly from a healthy MoJo running against a Buffalo Bills line that got torched by the similar styled Bobby Rainey last week.  Like the Dazzle, the Captain will be deploying players on Thursday Night as well as fantasy breakout star Keenan Allen and bruising TE Ladarius Green suit up against a Denver defense that ranges from average to poor against the pass depending on who is healthy.  The Captain will rely on Tony Romo to put up a strong performance at home against a Green Bay Packers team that will still likely be without Aaron Rodgers.  Rodgers playing would be the best thing that could happen to the Captain, as that may necessitate more passing from Romo.

I refuse to predict the winner of this game as my season is on the line, however, I am fairly certain that the Captain will cover the insanely high 31.5 point spread.  Dazzle’s projected points are propped a little too high, and the Captain’s seem a little too low upon a passing glance.  The bigger prediction is this, if Peyton Manning and company match or surpass their projected point totals and the Captain’s minions disappoint, the Dazzle will be sitting pretty to move on to compete for a Jerkoff crown.  Like no matchup in this season’s Jerkoffs thus far, this game will be impacted by the results of the Thursday Night game.

Frenchy (2) v. JPOWW (3)

The man with the most titles in JFFL history takes on the most snakebit manager in the league.  Frenchy went on an unprecedented back to back run in 2010 and 2011.  In 2010, it was JPOWW who served as Frenchy’s stepping stone from the Semi-Finals into the title game.  This week he is looking to return the favor in a game that would be an “upset” in seeding, but not in projected points.  Indeed, JPOWW is projected to win by 17.5 points despite his lower seed.  Yahoo! statistical minions could not be reached for comment when asked if the projection has anything to do with the fact that Frenchy has a picture of a penis as his team’s logo.

Frenchy has a really difficult combination of tough defensive matchups to overcome but nothing is impossible.  The Houston pass defense is highly rated against fantasy quarterbacks this year, in theory, because they haven’t allowed many points through the air.  This is an illusion created by the fact that, as teams pull ahead of the Texans as they have all season, they tend to run at a higher rate than normal.  Andrew Luck and the Colts will surely fall behind early, yet again, in living up to their reputation as the worst playoff team in football.  Stud Marshawn Lynch has to make due against a Giants defense that has been tough against the run this season.  Apparently it’s the only thing that works for the G-Men.  While I expect Lynch to turn in a solid performance, I don’t expect him to be exceptional.  On the flipside, no one is doing what Josh Gordon has been doing over the last 4 weeks where he has accumulated a record 774 receiving yards, the most ever for any WR in a 4 game span.  Combined with the perpetually excellent A.J. Green, Gordon could help push Frenchy to victory.  A big game from either Darren Sproles, who has slowed significantly in the second half of the season, or Ryan Mathews, who sucks, is probably a must for Frenchy to have a legitimate shot against JPOWW.

Speaking of the points leader, the name of the game with JPOWW is his depth.  No full roster, top to bottom, is better than JPOWW’s as any one of his bench players could legitimately start in any given week.  That does invite it’s own set of challenges as JPOWW is tasked with choosing the correct combination of players to accompany stalwarts Demaryius Thomas, Andre Brown, Jason Witten, and fantasy star Jamaal Charles.  Each of the aforementioned players, by the way, have average to favorable defensive matchups.  Of JPOWW’s scheduled starters, only Zac Stacy faces tough sledding against the much improved New Orleans Saints defense.  Shane Vereen also looks to build upon his stellar conclusion to the 2013 season with a solid matchup against the woeful Miami Dolphins rush defense.  At the moment, T.Y. Hilton and Reggie Bush are lurking on the bench, just in case JPOWW feels like changing things up.  One area where JPOWW may be outsmarting himself is on defense.  He currently has the Buffalo Bills slated to start with a favorable matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars.  I don’t believe in starting bad defenses regardless of matchup.  I’d also point out that the Jags have been resurgent over the last month and are finally buying into Gus Bradley and playing hard for him as a result.  This could be a trap, but hardly one which may actually hurt JPOWW.

With a spread of 17.5 I fully expect JPOWW to cover on his way to a shot at the JFFL Championship.  Frenchy will need huge performances from each of his stars to bridge the gap in points.  We saw how well that worked out for C-Lion last week.

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One response to “Jerkoffs 2013: Semi-Finals Preview

  1. Well done. Frenchy and I are actually both vying for the opportunity to win a 3rd title. I won in 2004 & 2006. Frenchy won in 2010 and 2011. Would be an interesting JFFL subplot if we face each other in the championship. Of course, I have an uphill battle this week, as you correclty pointed out….

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