Thursday, June 23, 2011

Looking Ahead 2011: Simba's Buttkicker!

This is the third post of a series of blogs covering each team from the 2010 Brothers Keeper league in detail. We began with the last place team moving up to the top of the league standings as it stood at the end of the 2010 fantasy football season (cf. CYBORG PIRATE NINJAS; and Kabuki Strikes Back). Next up, Simba's Buttkicker! (R Johnson).

Pseudo 'Champions' label on the t-shirt is out of place.
Overview of Simba's Buttkicker!'s Brothers Keeper History
2007 Simba's Butt Kicker: 4-10-0 (9th Place) 1535.54 points; 49 transactions
2008 Simba's Buttkicker: 2-11-0 (10th Place) 1080.75 points; 40 transactions
2009 Simba's ButtKicker!: 7-6-0 (4th Place) 1455.30 points; 29 transactions
2010 Simba's Buttkicker!: 2-11-0 (8th Place) 1193.53 points; 23 transactions

Simba's Buttkicker!'s 2010 Keeper Declaration
Who keeps a cat?
The Brothers Keeper Keeper Declaration day came and R Johnson elected to keep M Turner RB in the 2d Rd, R White WR in the 3d Rd, M Schaub QB in the 5th Rd, and J Cribbs WR as his developmental eligible keeper in the 15th Rd. Looking back one might have questioned if tossing aside D Williams RB was a good thing for 2010 but it was. Good choice. However, A Gates TE performed very well when healthy as a result of being one of P Rivers's QB only solid target with V Jackson WR unsigned. But he was MIA at the end of the regular season and fantasy playoffs. So maybe not such a bad idea to not keep him but he would have rewarded handsomely if he was.

By the way, let's get an updated look at the 2008 trade between J Fullerton and R Johnson:

Trade Comparison:
L Tomlinson
2008 Total Fantasy Points: 256.30
2009 Total Fantasy Points: 168.70
2010 Total Fantasy Points: 197.8
Total: 622.8

M Turner
2008 Total Fantasy Points: 275.95
2009 Total Fantasy Points: 149.85
2010 Total Fantasy Points: 221.35
Total: 647.15

M Turner is beginning to edge out L Tomlinson but not by much. I am actually pleasantly surprised it has turned out this even as I figured Tomlinson was on the downward trend in his career. However, while Tomlinson has been a first Rd keeper the last two seasons, Turner was kept as a 3d Rd pick in 2009 and a 2d Rd pick in 2010 thus freeing up R Johnson to select players earlier in the draft while J Fullerton didn't have the same luxury. So on two separate levels this has been a bonus for R Johnson in the long term.

Simba's Buttkicker!'s 2010 Draft
Following the old Keeper League Draft Order Rule Simba's Buttkicker! (R Johnson) had the 8th overall draft pick position in the 2010 draft due to his playoff loss. His 2010 draft results are thus (noting those who were kept from his 2009 final roster with a This player is a keeper.):

1.(8)Ryan Mathews (SD - RB)
2.(13)Michael Turner This player is a keeper. (Atl - RB)
3.(28)Roddy White This player is a keeper. (Atl - WR)
4.(33)Pierre Thomas (NO - RB)
5.(48)Matt Schaub This player is a keeper. (Hou - QB)
6.(53)Vincent Jackson (SD - WR)
7.(68)Dexter McCluster (KC - WR,RB)
8.(73)Fred Jackson (Buf - RB)
9.(88)Garrett Hartley (NO - K)
10.(93)Chris Cooley (Was - TE)
11.(108)Vince Young (Ten - QB)
12.(113)Rob Gronkowski (NE - TE)
13.(128)Chicago (Chi - DEF)
14.(133)Devin Hester (Chi - WR)
15.(148)Joshua Cribbs This player is a keeper. (Cle - WR)

Here's Simba's Buttkicker!'s 2010 Draft compared to the 2010 Brothers Keeper Fantasy Football Ideal Draft Value Chart results:

As you should be able to see, R Johnson's keepers (M Turner; R White; and M Schaub) performed well enough to have been good keeper selections (near or above the perfect market efficiency of their draft pick position). J Cribbs WR was definitely a viable keeper before 2010 began if one were inclined to employ 2009's late season successes. However he wasn't as good of a keeper for 2010. Since he was only worth a 15th Rd pick, it wasn't detrimental to Simba's Buttkicker!'s attempt to revisit the playoffs.

Going back to the 2008 trade with J Fullerton, in 2009 R Johnson selected D Williams RB and A Gates TE with his first two picks and they proved quite productive. In 2010 R Johnson selected R Mathews in the 1st Rd but with less success. The advantage for 2010 wasn't there as with 2009 on account of a lackluster draft choice.

What seems difficult to understand is who R Johnson should have selected with the 8th pick overall (3d pick if you consider the 1st Rd keepers). J Smith's Yankinfowlsandfeline selected G Jennings WR. Then D Kessler's Points ON the Bench nabbed S Greene RB. Hindsight is always 20/20. Personally I would have selected D Williams RB who underperformed anyhow. R Mathews RB was an untested highly toted rookie. In a keeper league I can understand why he would have been desired. But was he going to be a legitimate 3d overall pick? Only if he performed out of his gourd in the years to come. But that won't help Simba's Buttkicker! because he no longer is on his roster.

However this wasn't the full extent of R Johnson's failure. P Thomas RB might have been a good selection with the 4th Rd pick but he was injured missing a huge amount of the fantasy season. V Jackson WR in the 6th Rd would have been a great selection but V Jackson went unsigned for most of the fantasy season and then when he finally signed in order to gain an extra year to his resume (toward a more veteran status) he was hit with a suspension thus delaying his entry into league play even later. Then R Johnson selected D McCluster in the 7th Rd. He also did not produce near the Ideal Draft Value Chart level. While the keepers were good the draft picks were terrible. Three good keepers wasn't going to be able to sustain the weight of four bad draft picks in the first 7 rounds. My guess is that even if R Johnson's lot of draft picks performed as good or as conservatively as J Fullerton's draft picks R Johnson would have seen the playoffs for the 2d time in 4 years of Brothers Keeper league play.

End of Season Commentary
What else should one expect from a guy who is stuck in a bad relationship with M Turner (5.55 FP)? Feeling a sour relationship even before the season started R Johnson turned to Kareem "lotsa" Huggins RB for waiver wire hope. Hmmm... maybe now we know why Turner played so bad. Disloyalty is the worst kind of sin. Loyalty is rewarded heftily with benefits. Just look at R White's WR day (18.55 FP). Perhaps next time Simba's Buttkicker! will be able to make up the 13.73 points for a win. Nah, who am I kidding. He's a scavenger of the sea floor in Brothers Keeper sitting in 9th place after week one. Dance with the one who brung ya. Ok, so he dropped Kareem "lotsa" Huggins RB and picked up M Vick QB.... only to bench M Schaub who he kept from 2009. Schaub only scored 7.97 FP in week 1. In week 2 M Vick scored 28.06 FP but Simba's Buttkicker! lost 94.71 to 110.5. However, If he had started M Schaub instead of M Vick at QB he would have won. You see, M Schaub was the spurned dance partner now so he scored 42.08 FP. So let's see what week 3 will bring: R Johnson restarted M Schaub, though spurned, and and M Schaub said, "Not gonna do it" and scored only 11.64 FP. Meanwhile, M Vick scored 39.64 FP. Guess what. He could have won week 3 too since he lost by 15 points. Back and forth back and forth. Make up your mind old man and try to win. Stop being so disloyal to such sensitive fantasy stars.

R Johnson's floundering disloyal ways caused him to muse, "Another keeper team that sucks. It is going to be a long season!" on his team status. D Pilcher's Redmans CatClippers retorted, "I love it when the Buttt whines and loses... I really do..." And order was restored followed by 2 more losses. That's right, R Johnson opened the season with an 0-5 record. In fact, he lost so bad to Redmans CatClippers in week 5 that if you had doubled Simba's Buttkicker!'s FP he would have still lost. It just goes to show who's butt was really getting kicked. Poor cat. Even more disturbing than this is the following real pictures of R Johnson from his band Adam's Apple (or Adams Apple... disloyal to the apostrophe!):

Can't you hear it being sung?
When the truth is found to be lies
and all the joys within you dies
don't you want somebody to love
don't you need somebody to love
wouldn't you love somebody to love
you better find somebody to love
A rumor I heard supposedly had R Johnson kicked off the high school team by a coach because of the long hair. I hope it was worth being in a band playing with sticks than with baseball bats.

Oh yeah, where was I? Oh yeah. Week 6. Well somehow Simba's Buttkicker!'s opponent, Ghost, ended up with M Vick QB (see the trade on the upcoming Looking Ahead 2011: Ghost). M Schaub liked it and scored 27.5 FP and R Johnson finally cracked the 100 point barrier and saw his first fantasy win of 2010 (mainly because Ghost had some folks on a bye but we don't want to take anything away from R Johnson because he needs everything he can get as you will see). In week 7 R White WR and M Turner RB both dominated and pushed R Johnson to a season high (through the first 7 weeks) score of 123.51 FP over Points ON the Bench's 103.32 FP. This is the end of the high point of R Johnson's fantasy season. Short lived for a short in stature man as he.

I don't know how one could do it normally but R Johnson could do so if you ask me. He bested his 5 game losing streak to open the season with a 6 game losing streak to end the season. In fact, it seems even more improbable knowing that the last time he cracked the 100 point barrier in week 11 he scored 145.01 FP but lost to Kabuki Strikes Back's 158.24 FP trouncing. It's really a sad state of affairs for R Johnson.

Last year I warned:
This may not have been a very good strategy for R Johnson's future. The further he went into the playoffs the worse his draft pick position would be in 2010. In three years of Brothers Keeper drafting he has had 2 number one draft picks and 1 number two draft pick. He's never had anything past the third pick in the draft. With the 2009 4th place finish he will now suffer by drafting eighth. For a person who needs all the draft help he can get this might not be a good thing. It will all depend on his draft prep.
It appears 2009's late and probably unjustified playoff run set him up for a bigger failure than R Johnson believed due to a later than normal draft pick scenario for R Johnson. We can now add the upcoming 2011 draft to the numbers: In five years of Brothers Keeper drafting he will have had 3 number one draft picks and 1 number two draft pick along with 1 number 8 draft pick position. Unbelieveable. The man loves him some #1 draft pick... or he loves losing. This video reminds me of R Johnson's Brothers Keeper career:

He has yet to earn the "Champions" nomenclature his T-shirt suggests. I guess wearing such clothes (as with other outrageous outfits in the above photos) is an attempt to lift his spirits in losing times. Keep smiling R Johnson and we'll keep winning out of your reach... and on a personal note you and your wife are in our prayers.

Simba's Buttkicker!'s Final 2010 Roster
Despite winning a couple games in the consolation bracket, the 2010 version of Simba's Buttkicker!'s had a terrible regular season winning percentage and extremely low fantasy point total. As a result R Johnson qualified for the first overall draft pick position according to the new draft order equation. I have included the upcoming 2011 draft round and pick number (overall pick is in parentheses) of each player on Simba's Buttkicker!'s final roster followed by the name of the player, player's position, any 1st Rd Keeper Value players, total # of fantasy starts for the season (a * indicates developmental eligibility for 2011's draft; some players were on more than one team but their total starts for all teams is listed); and total fantasy points scored by the player for the 16 fantasy week season (which is not subject to the # of starts):

1. (1) Michael Truner RB (1st Rd Keeper Value); 11 fantasy starts; 221.35 fp
1. (1) Frank Gore RB (1st Rd Keeper Value); 11 fantasy starts (11 with SOCIAL ISoTopes); 179.9 fp
2. (20) Roddy White WR; 11 fantasy starts; 246.75 fp
3. (21)
4. (40) Matt Schaub QB; 11 fantasy starts; 323.6 fp
5. (41)
6. (60) Vincent Jackson WR; 1* fantasy start; 45.8 fp
7. (61) Thomas Jones RB; 10 fantasy starts (1 with Ghost and 9 with Simba's Buttkicker!); 143.7 fp
8. (80)
9. (81)
10. (100)
11. (101)
12. (120)
13. (121) Brandon Jacobs RB; 3* fantasy starts; 142.25 fp
14. (140)
15. (141) New England DEF; 2* fantasy starts; 174 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Stevie Johnson WR; 6 fantasy starts; 193.65 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Marcedes Lewis TE; 1* fantasy start (1 with Yer X-MOM); 149 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Mike Tolbert RB; 8 fantasy starts (4 with Ghost and 4 with Simba's Buttkicker!); 171.3 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Matt Bryant K; 5 fantasy starts (1 with SOCIAL ISoTopes and 4 with Simba's Buttkicker!); 135 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Lance Moore WR; 2* fantasy starts; 153.88 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Dustin Keller TE; 7 fantasy starts; 119.35 fp (Undrafted)
15. (141) Brad Smith WR; 0* fantasy starts; 106.07 fp (Undrafted)

Looking Ahead 2011
Stuck in the doldrums of picking first overall, R Johnson needs to do a better job keeping talent, drafting, and starting players on a week to week basis. Scoring near the bottom in total fantasy points so often just isn't going to get anyone anywhere they want to go in competition scenarios unless you play golf. R Johnson also cannot drop and add and sit and start people like he can in fantasy baseball competitions. NFL players don't have hot streaks. They are much more influenced by the defenses they face than maybe many are willing to admit.

I was surprised a frustrated Brothers Keeper Commissioner and SOCIAL ISoTopes owner, M Peltonen dropped a perennial underperforming F Gore RB so late in the fantasy season from his squad. Doing his due diligence R Johnson picked him up utilizing his waiver wire priority since he was in last place. But here's the thing. Now R Johnson is in a bit of a dilemma with his talent. M Turner RB Rd1, F Gore RB Rd 1, R White WR Rd 2, M Schaub QB Rd 4, V Jackson WR Rd 6, and S Johnson WR Rd 15 would be under my instant consideration to keep. V Jackson is developmental eligible so take him out of consideration for the 3 remaining keepers. That also give Simba's Buttkicker!'s a WR to begin with.

If one were so inclined to keep F Gore, M Turner, and R White (2 WRs and 2 RBs) R Johnson would not have a draft pick available to him to select a RB/WR Flex or QB until Rd 4 and Rd 5 (back to back picks picks 40 and 41). That leaves him waiting until Rd 7 for a TE.

Perhaps R Johnson would rather keep M Schaub QB instead of one of the RBs. That would free up a Rd 3 draft pick. Another way to free up a Rd 3 draft pick would be to not keep R White WR, but rather keep the up and coming S Johnson WR in the 15th Rd instead.
Another option could also free up the 1st pick overall, and his 3d Rd pick. In this scenario, because R Johnson has the first pick, he would not keep either RB but instead would have three WRs and a QB (R White, V Jackson, S Johnson, and M Schaub). With the 1st pick overall, he can easily pick his choice of F Gore or M Turner or any other RB of his choice available and still have a pick in the 3d Rd for another RB. Kind of a different route to take but one worth considering.

My Best Guess at Simba's Buttkicker!'s 2011
First and foremost R Johnson will definitely keep his old cat Simba. Maybe his cat is bad luck as his team's mascot, but it is his mascot. I guess he is loyal somewhere after all. In this section it is not for me to think what R Johnson should do but what it is he probably will do. My best guess is that F Gore RB, M Turner RB, R White WR, and V Jackson WR as developmental would be retained by R Johnson for 2011. My gut just doesn't tell me he passes on having two solid middle of the road RBs. It will put him into a position of depth at RB that he hasn't been in for some time.

Keepers Brothers Keeper Third Party Consultant's Best Guess at Simba's Buttkicker!'s 2011 Keepers
Running to the bathroom
"Okay after a couple days of debating on this I'm going Gore, Roddy White, Matt Schaub and V Jax as [the] developmental player. It took me around 2 days to decide who was the better between Gore and Turner but with Turner going on 30 this year and with Gore's line getting better I'm gonna roll with Frank the Tank! I chose Schaub over Turner as well because when healthy he's a top 5 fantasy QB and with a healthy Owen Daniels coming back this year along with A Johnson and Arian Foster he should be back in the top 5. It's gonna be close but he should find another decent starting RB in Rd 3 that should be a prime spot to grab a new starter or a decent vet."

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