The Q&A column at FFToday is a dialogue between readers from
very different leagues all over the world. In last
week’s column, I asked those readers to let me know
about any gaps in this column’s discussion of fantasy football
Ravi’s response served as a reminder that I should have
been more specific:
Just a couple ideas that I wish were addressed
somewhere in the FFB landscape. This information is the sort of
information I infer indirectly based on other types of information,
but would love an expert to provide the analysis instead:
1. Ranking of offensive lines from a passing and rushing perspective.
2. Ranking of offensive coordinator success/history with QBs and
3. Impact of a defense on a that same team’s offense (i.e.,
Packers weakness defending the pass lends itself to shoot-outs
and, thus, increased Packer passing, hence better QB stats for
I bet that I could come up with 20 more if I put my mind to it.
Like Ravi, I wish topics such as these received more attention.
Matt Forte reminded a lot of us of Marshall Faulk in Week One,
which presumably had more to do with the offensive coordination
of Mike Martz than the kind of shoes that Forte wore on Sunday.
O-line stats aren’t sexy or easy to assess. It is helpful
to know how much a lineman weighs, how tall he is, how much he
is capable of bench pressing, how many starts he has had, and
how often he makes it to the Pro Bowl, but imagine attempting
to rank receivers based on such indirect measurements of the impact
they might make on the field.
Ravi is also right about the effect that defensive units have
on their offensive counterparts. He uses Green Bay’s weakness
against the pass defensively to explain why the Packers have to
pass so much on offense. We could just as easily look at a perennial
defensive powerhouse (such as Baltimore) and see that it is no
accident that the Ravens usually have a much better running game
than passing game.
If readers can think of an easy and useful way in which Q&A
can help with categories that tend to fall into the statistical
murk (O-lines, coaching changes, and the effect of defenses on
their offensive counterparts are just 3 good examples), then I
will be happy to consider modifying this column to accommodate
whatever specific changes readers can suggest. (Hey Ravi, do you
want a paragraph in the column highlighting the most important
coaching factoid of each week?)
Unfortunately for readers like Ravi, the focus of the Q&A
column has always been on league management and mechanics—not
the rankings of players or the organizing of statistics. Q&A
is a resource for commissioners and players who want to get as
much fun as possible out of their existing rules or to modify
their rules without creating inequities for participants.
It is therefore no surprise that we have had extensive discussions
about trading, collusion, roster freezes, fee collection, etc.
But Aaron is surprised that the column shies away from discussion
of some of the tools that can simplify life so drastically for
so many commissioners:
The Q&A column does a great job of letting
me know what other commissioners are doing,
but it is pretty sketchy when it comes to informing me about what
tools they are using. Over the
summer one of your readers mentioned a web service called Leaguesafe.com
that would take care of collecting fees and handling payouts for
leagues. I had never heard of such a thing. I wish you would focus
more on letting your readers share tips like this one with each
I have actually been receiving messages along the lines of this
one from Aaron for years. I rarely refuse to mention a web service
by name, but I have always been reluctant to focus on any service
that I have not used myself. A lot of the emails that I receive
read suspiciously like advertisements for services from people
with vested interest in those services.
I don’t mind giving free advertising to a website that
provides a good service, but I fear that if I just reproduce testimonials
from readers about which websites they like best, then I could
end up giving free advertising to websites that are good at nothing
but mailing me bogus testimonials.
This Week’s Question:
If you find a particular web service invaluable for simplifying
the management of your league, please
write to me with the following information:
1) The name of the web service;
2) The function it performs for your league;
3) An example of a particular headache that was eliminated by
the service; &
4) A brief walkthrough for using the service to perform one useful
I have no idea how much feedback I will receive on this question.
I would like to focus on services that I can check out firsthand.
I understand that many premium services require the payment of
a fee and the use of a password before they can be accessed. If
owners of any such services want to grant me temporary access
to their websites so I can check them out and report on them to
the readers of this column, I will be happy to do so—but
I cannot promise favorable reviews in advance.
Last Man Standing (Updates on Contributors)
I got a kick out of writing the LMS section of the column last
week. I correctly cautioned readers against taking Indy over Houston,
and I was pleased that my top two picks both worked out. However,
I prefer to leave the LMS picks to cooler heads than my own, which
is why that section of the column was handled by Matthew Schiff
and then by Marc Mondry for the past few years.
Mondry’s extensive and witty LMS commentary will be missed
as he focuses on school and other commitments this season. Thanks
Marc for all the great work you did.
The great Schiff has indicated that he may have time to share
picks with us occasionally this season. This column will always
have room for any contributions that Schiff cares to make.
For now, I want to introduce readers to Mark Den Adel, with whom
many readers are already familiar thanks to his contributions
to Marc Mondry’s section of this column last season. Take
it away Mark.
Trap game – Miami over Minnesota
Minnesota put all its preparation over the summer into beating
New Orleans and Favre isn’t on the same page yet with his
receivers (which showed against the Saints). Miami had a close
game against Buffalo, but Tony Sparano’s team played well
in their last four road games of 2009 (beating Carolina and Jacksonville,
losing to Tennessee in OT and losing at Buffalo which they avenged
1) Green Bay over Buffalo
Green Bay played well in the first half and coasted in
the second watching Michael Vick run up and down the field. Even
though Ryan Grant is out for the year, Brandon Jackson will fill
in admirably, and this game should be over by halftime if the
line (GB -13.5) is any indication.
2) Dallas over Chicago
Dallas feels like their offense should have been more productive
against the Redskins although it's obvious their o-line needs
some work. The Bears needed help from the officials to beat Detroit
and had trouble hanging onto the ball in Week 1. With the Super
Bowl in Jerry's Palace, Dallas can’t afford to start 0-2,
and Chicago already has a gift win under its belt. Time for the
football gods to render a little justice.
3) Atlanta over Arizona
Arizona had problems moving the chains against St. Louis
and will have even more problems against a tough Atlanta defense
which only gave up field goals in regulation against Pittsburgh.
For responses to this week's fantasy question please email