Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson had another huge year for… (Brian Cassella / Chicago…)
Before the football season began, we had fantasy fanatics Dan Richman and Jay St. Pierre draft their ideal teams. Now it's time to see who looks like a genius and who needed to go back to the drawing board.
St. Pierre: Drew Brees, New Orleans QB
Breesus Christ hasn't let me down this year, trailing just Peyton Manning as the best quarterback in most fantasy leagues. He's second in passing yards (4,500) and total touchdowns (36).
Richman: Adrian Peterson, Minnesota RB
While AP didn't come close to duplicating his unbelievable 2012, his 2013 was still good: almost 1,400 all-purpose yards and 11 touchdowns.
St. Pierre: Doug Martin, Tampa Bay RB
Good news: Just about every fantasy owner was bitten by the injury bug at running back this season. Bad news: I was bitten way too early when Martin tore his labrum in Week 6. Didn't matter much anyway. The Muscle Hamster was averaging just 87 yards per game and scored once.
Richman: Calvin Johnson, Detroit WR
Megatron is without question the No. 1 wide receiver in fantasy football. The stats validate what I'm sayin': 81 catches, over 1,400 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. Johnson was, plain and simple, a steal in the second round.
St. Pierre: Jimmy Graham, New Orleans TE
I ... STRUCK ... GOLD! At the start of the season, I said Graham would tally more than 1,000 yards and 10-12 touchdowns. He's done that and more: 1,071 yards and 14 scores with two games to play.
Richman: Cam Newton, Carolina QB
I predicted Newton would throw for over 3,500 yards and rush for over 700. Well, he's on pace to throw for over 3,400 yards and rush for just under 600 (maybe I ought to spend more time in Vegas). Newton also is on pace to throw for 24 touchdowns. Great stats, especially for a third-round pick.
St. Pierre: Dez Bryant, Dallas WR
Some Cleveland degenerate named Josh Gordon leads the league in receiving yards, but Bryant's 1,061 are respectable considering only 15 wideouts have reached the 1,000-yard mark this season. Bryant is second among receivers (behind Megatron, of course) with 11 scores and actually has as many receptions (81) than the beast in Detroit.
Richman: Jason Witten, Dallas TE
I said at the beginning of the year Witten was the second best fantasy tight end behind Jimmy Graham. I was wrong. Witten is having a solid season (eight TDs, just over 700 yards receiving), but I wanted more. Not a great pick.
St. Pierre: Arizona defense
While "Dan the Man" over here took the obvious choice, my pick was based more off the nonexistent fact that former LSU players are amazing at life. And while Patrick Peterson hasn't picked off 50 passes (yet), I think I read somewhere that an injured Tyrann "Honey Badger" Mathieu now has a bionic knee and is going to play every position the next two weeks, which basically means I get an automatic win in this category. #ThankYouGoodBye
Richman: San Francisco defense
The 49ers have been really good for fantasy, capping things off with a great game last week against Tampa Bay. If you had the 49ers defense and you played them last week in the playoffs, you should be happy.
St. Pierre: Matt Bryant, Atlanta K
Yeeeeeah, I'm not even going to comment on this. Kickers are stupid in fantasy football. That and my prediction that Atlanta's offense would explode this year hasn't panned out thanks to injuries.
Richman: Blair Walsh, Minnesota K
The problem with Walsh is the team he plays for; the Vikings are not good offensively. Walsh is having a good year, connecting on 26 of 36 field goals and has missed only one extra point. There are other kickers having better years than Walsh, but he's above average and a good pick at this stage.
WINNER: Well, if we absolutely have to to pick one guy as having a better year, we'll go with Mr. Richman. Not that it really matters. That said, the real lesson here is not to worry about drafting a defense or kicker until you absolutely have to. Best of luck in 2014.
Jay St. Pierre is a RedEye designer. Dan Richman is a RedEye special contributor.
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