Michael Vick and the Top Fantasy Football Busts of 2012
All of us think our fantasy football teams are “beastly” when we draft them in August or early September, but rarely does the fantasy football team you draft turn out to be as dominating as you thought they would be. Most of the time it doesn’t even resemble the team you drafted. Seasons are strewn with big-time trades that really screw over or unfairly boost a fantasy football team and early season waiver wire pickups can either make or break your entire fantasy season (Alfred Morris anyone?).
Examining the top fantasy football players for 2012 is too simple and not as much fun as trashing those players that really stunk up the stat sheet. These were the players you read about in all the little “expert” fantasy football magazines or Matthew Berry’s preseason love/hate articles. You thought, ‘damn this guy is such a sleeper, how is he falling to me in round 7?!’ but really the guy sucked and contributed to you missing the FF playoffs. Here is a list of the NFL players that really crapped in their fantasy pants and all over your fantasy roster in 2012″
Ryan Matthews, RB, San Diego Chargers
If you break your collarbone to begin the season then proceed to break your collarbone to end the season (not to mention in the thick of the fantasy playoffs), you’re not going to make fantasy owners very keen on drafting you highly again the following season. Matthews failed to rush for 100 yards in any game this season and averaged a measly 3.8 yards per carry. Many pre-draft rankings placed Matthews in the top-10 of running backs due to Mike Tolbert having recently departed for Carolina. Heh, so much for his role as a workhorse. He is more properly characterized as an… incapacitated…horse.
Eli Manning, QB, New York Giants
It’s not that Eli Manning isn’t an elite quarterback. He’s proven again and again that those who doubt him end up sucking their thumbs and wishing they didn’t. But COME ON ELI! He raided the Saints to the tune of 52-27 in the first round of the fantasy playoffs, having owners licking their chops in anticipation of the Giants’ week 15 matchup against the not-very-scary Atlanta Falcons pass defense. The game was ripe for a huge score-fest between Eli and Matty Ice. Instead Eli was caught rubbing the football, instead of effectively throwing it. To complicate matters, Eli produced a stretch of three consecutive games in which he produced less than 8 fantasy points for owners. The guy can win NFL championships, but probably helped you stay far away from the fantasy championship.
Michael Vick, QB, Philadelphia Eagles
Vick was hurt most of the season, so it’s partially unfair to include him on this list. He also got benched by head coach Andy Reid and produced nowhere near the fantasy season he had in 2010. When Vick did play, he played fairly well, but not Vick-esque. His dynamic play style is great for fantasy teams because of his ability to gain huge chunks of yards with his feet as well as Reid’s propensity to throw the football 40 times a game. But the Eagles were a mess from the start. They couldn’t protect Vick when he did drop back to pass, causing a very high number of sacks and forcing Vick to throw prematurely, likely ending in interceptions. If the Eagles keep Vick as their starter, he’s probably a QB2 in most formats until the Eagles prove they can keep him upright.
Jay Cutler, QB, Chicago Bears
I don’t want to talk about it. He was my sleeper. He just never woke up.
Vernon Davis, TE, San Francisco 49ers
‘VD’ should more properly be referred to as venereal disease. Because good lord he was terrible. Some experts had the guy as the number one overall tight end in fantasy pre-rankings. More like the number one kick to a fantasy owner’s groin. VD was notoriously bad throughout the season, especially following weeks 1, 2, and 3. He admitted to having bad rapport with Colin Kaepernick, but even with Alex Smith as quarterback he was nothing to write home about. I’m amazed so many fantasy teams kept him rostered, because he clearly should have been relegated to fantasy free agent duties.
Who did we miss? Have a fantasy player or several in mind that crushed your spirit in fantasy football this year? Let us hear about it in the comments below!