The go-to guy in my crew for all things football.  Smells dominates every fantasy league he is in.  Here he gives us his update on the state of the NFL with a division by division breakdown.  (Real Life = On the Field – Make Believe = Fantasy Football)  Take a look.

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The AFC West has belonged to the San Diego Chargers for a while now.  Norv Turner has been coaching them right out of the playoffs in each of those years.  I think we are starting to see a changing of the guard.  Last year the Oakland Raiders swept the division, and the Kansas City Chiefs showed some life.  Injuries have ruined KC’s chances this year but I believe they have a solid base to be competitive in the future.  Right now, the Raiders are competitive.  They will be putting pressure on the Chargers all year.  Should make for an interesting playoff chase in the West this year.

San Diego Chargers: 4-1

Real Life:  Antonio Gates’ foot injury has been a big blow to this offense.  Shouldn’t be a surprise that losing a Hall of Fame caliber TE will negatively affect an offense.  However, it looks like they have found a stud young RB in Ryan Mathews.  He seems to be having a breakout year.   Phillip Rivers is another year older and time is ticking for him.  He is right on the fringe of elite.  Just needs to win the big one to legitimize his career.  Their schedule is not favorable going forward.  One slip up and they will end the season 9-7.  Playoff Odds: 60%

Make Believe:  Pretty much everyone on their offense is valuable.  I think the time to scoop Gates has probably passed.  If any Mathews owners don’t realize they have a top five back on their team, try to low-ball an offer for him.   I think Mike Tolbert’s production will take a hit when Gates returns, which blows for me (he is my RB2 in a big league).  I expect a monster rest of the season for Vincent Jackson.  Remember, San Diego has already had their bye week.  If your K or D are average, you can scoop Nick Novak and San Diego’s D and be set for the rest of the year.  Also keep that in mind when making trade offers for players on SD.  Since they have already had their bye that gives them a pretty decent bump in value moving forward.

Oakland Raiders: 4-2

Real Life: Big talk right now is about Carson Palmer to the Raiders.  Clearly the Raiders way overpaid for him, but I like the move.  They have a good team now and can make the playoffs this year.  They will be favored in  six of their remaining ten games, which could put them at ten wins total.  (KC, DEN, @MIN, CHI, @MIA,  @KC).  You say Palmer is gonna be out of shape and won’t be able to learn the OAK offense?   How hard can the OAK offense be to learn?  Jason Campbell somehow made us forget that he is dog shit.  I think Palmer will be motivated to perform well in his home state.   He wants to play football, just not for a shitty owner like Mike Brown.   The Raiders have something like 14 first round picks of their team now.  Playoff Odds: 60%

Make Believe:  Obviously Darren McFadden is the best player on this offense.  If you have him, please make sure you have Michael Bush as his handcuff.  This team runs the ball very well, and Bush will be very effective if DMC gets injured.  I think with Palmer all of their WR’s get a bump in value.  However, they have too many WR’s for them all to be productive.  Its gonna be like picking names out of a hat to try to guess who will have the productive game each week.  I would just avoid their WR situation.

Kansas City Chiefs: 2-3

Real Life:  A team that was on the rise that just got sucker punched in the balls.  Jamaal Charles and Eric Berry are the best players on their respective sides of the ball for this team.  Both are out for the year with injuries.  They have some fight in them though.  Their schedule is not doing them any favors (only 2-3 games where they will be favorites).  I could see them ending a lot of people’s survivor league years though with a fluky win against the Steelers, Patriots, or Packers. Playoff Odds: 0%

Make Believe:  Dwayne Bowe is the only name to really talk about here.  He is a bad man.  Plus I expect this team to be getting blown out in a good number of their upcoming games.  That would be great for Bowe owners for some junk time TD’s.  Matt Cassel should be considered bye week fill in only.  Jackie Battle could emerge as a solid back from here on out.  If he has a good game this weekend, the time to buy low will be gone.

Denver Broncos: 1-4

Real Life:  The Tim Tebow thing has gotten way out of control with the Denver Broncos.  I don’t understand why he is such a polarizing figure.  I guess it has to do with the amount of attention he gets from the media.  I feel like the media created most of this craziness.  I think he is a total beast.  He set all kinds of records in college in the best conference in the land.  A lot of his game is based on his mobility.  As long as he can stay healthy and mobile, I think he will be effective.  I think they have a good coach in John Fox and they will not quit on him this year.  Should make for some interesting games the rest of the season.  Still no chance of them making the playoffs this year.  Playoff Odds: 0%

Make Believe:  Tebow has some value in that he will rush for some TD’s.  I don’t think he is going to be that effective through the air.  Avoid the WR’s in Denver.  Knowshon Moreno is someone who you should be targeting.  He has been shit this year and I assume most owners would take anything for him.  John Fox likes to run the ball and Moreno will benefit from this when he is completely healthy.  Get him cheap while you can.

Next I’ll finish off the AFC and teach you about the AFC South.

Learn,

Smells

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