Football Focus 2014

Articles filed under Dietz, John

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  • Some bold fantasy predictions as Week 1 arrives Sep 6, 2013 7:02 AM
    Following the crowd is really no fun, so with Week 1 upon us, I thought I'd throw out my preseason Surprises and Busts at each position. These are bold and may even fly in the face of some of my rankings from just two weeks ago, but after some time to consider more information, let's see how close I can come to hitting these on the head.

  • A plan that may not be all that crazy Aug 28, 2013 11:40 AM
    Drafting wide receivers in fantasy drafts is always a crapshoot. John Dietz is here to wade through the carnage to help you get a better handle on who to take as your draft approaches.

  • Patience will pay off this year Aug 23, 2013 7:11 PM
    There are so many good quarterbacks in the NFL these days that fantasy football analyst John Dietz says not to waste an early pick on the top names. See what else he things about this year's signal-callers and who he says can help your team the most in the middle rounds of your drafts.

  • Fantasy focus: Securing two top RBs a must Aug 28, 2013 11:26 AM
    Fantasy football analyst John Dietz gets you ready for the upcoming season with a look at the running backs. Who's No. 1? No. 2? What strategy should you use for your draft? It's all included.

  • Vikings’ Peterson defied the odds and the skeptics Dec 28, 2012 5:30 AM
    Daily Herald readers voted and now the results are in. See who the winners were in the 2012 Fantasy Football awards.

  • Some fun ways to make the fantasy football season last and last Dec 20, 2012 7:18 PM
    The fantasy football season is over for 80 percent of you, but John Dietz takes a look at a few ways to keep the fun rolling into the latter parts of the season for everyone.

  • Cast your votes for Fantasy Football winners, losers Dec 14, 2012 5:30 AM
    It's time for Daily Herald readers to vote for the 2012 fantasy football awards. Who's the MVP? The Biggest Bust? Rookie of the Year? You decide ...

  • Will Eagles’ Brown fumble his big opportunity? Dec 6, 2012 10:46 AM
    Since LeSean McCoy has been lost due to a concussion, Eagles RB Bryce Brown has burst onto the scene the last two weeks. He looks to be a superstar in the making, but the rookie better learn to hang onto the ball, as John Dietz explains in this week's Fantasy Football column.

  • Tough decisions for Week 13 Fantasy Football Nov 29, 2012 2:27 PM
    Win and you’re in. Lose and it’s wait ’til next year. For many fantasy football owners, that pretty much says it all as we enter Week 13 of the NFL season. Most regular seasons end this week or next, so I’m sure most of you are over analyzing to the max, stressing out and losing sleep. The best advice I can give is to stick with the guys who got you this far and ride them for better or for worse.

  • Some fantasy football advice on drafting rookies Nov 21, 2012 10:55 AM
    It's been a brutal fantasy season for John Dietz's teams, but it might have turned out differently if he had selected a few rookies in later rounds. He takes a closer look at whether that strategy is time-tested to be solid, and he offers up another helping of Good Bets and Bad Bets in this week's fantasy football column.

  • Some perspective on Yahoo fantasy football outage Nov 15, 2012 7:08 PM
    When Yahoo's fantasy football website went down Sunday, it left many owners in the dark. Some were awfully upset that they couldn't make last-minute changes to their lineups and blamed the website for their loss. John Dietz gives his take on the situation, and puts most of the blame on the owners, not the site.

  • Some below-the radar players who are worth a shot Nov 8, 2012 7:12 PM
    John Dietz gives fantasy football owners some off-the-beaten path names that may help struggling teams make a push for the playoffs.

  • Bestowing midseason fantasy football kudos, jeers Nov 1, 2012 7:28 PM
    Fantasy football writer John Dietz looks at the first-half surprises and duds. He also dishes out this week's good and bad bets with Bears QB Jay Cutler making the cut as a good bet at Tennessee.

  • Plenty of reasons to root for Tillman Oct 26, 2012 5:30 AM
    Charles Tillman has been a standout cornerback for the Bears for 10 years. See all the reasons why John Dietz says it's easy to root for Tillman, as well as how you can help out his cause when the fantasy football season is over.

  • How alert fantasy owners can avoid upcoming crashes Oct 20, 2012 12:07 AM
    I've always thought of myself as an excellent driver. No real accidents to speak of. Very few tickets. Avoiding accidents is 99 percent anticipation and always assuming the jamoke in the next lane is exactly that — a total jamoke. This parallel can easily be drawn into the world of fantasy football, and our ability to anticipate a player's rise to prominence or his fall from grace. So this week's column is dedicated to four soon-to-be jamokes that are about to send your team crashing into a fiery abyss. The solution to the upcoming pile-up is simple: Have the foresight to trade them now before their head-on collision with futility becomes reality.

  • Fantasy football: Go ahead, panic and take a chance Oct 12, 2012 5:30 AM
    When it comes to fantasy football, however, I’m OK with sounding the alarm, especially when a team is 0-5 or 1-4 or when a player (Antonio Gates) is causing so much pain (Jermichael Finley) that you are considering surgically removing him from your starting lineup. So let’s go ahead and focus on a few top-tier tight ends who are causing fantasy owners heart palpitations on a weekly basis.

  • Almost time for fantasy owners to make QB changes Sep 27, 2012 9:47 PM
    What's wrong with the top-tier quarterbacks this season? And what's with Ben Roethlisberger, Andy Dalton and Ryan Fitzptrick at the top of the fantasy QB point totals? John Dietz examines the subject in this week's column.

  • Should you sit your studs when they face 49ers, Texans? Sep 20, 2012 2:46 PM
    In this week's column, John Dietz takes a look at what fantasy football owners should do when their players are taking on the Texans or 49ers. Plus, check out his Good Bets, Bad Bets and who John's darkhorse candidate is this week.

  • A fair way to pick up fantasy football free agents Sep 13, 2012 2:48 PM
    Free-agent pickups. They are critical to the success of any fantasy team, and savvy owners win championshps by identifying future studs early. But what's amazing to me about the process is how every league does it differently. Much like snowflakes, no two leagues are alike in how they allow teams to pick up players. Here's a way that is fair to all ...

  • Rodgers takes fantasy MVP award Dec 30, 2011 12:11 AM
    Aaron Rodgers or Michael Vick? Vick or Rodgers? It was a choice many of you faced four months ago at your fantasy football draft(s). In my preseason column, I was on record saying I'd take the known quantity in Rodgers rather than risk starting the season with a “triple bogey” with Vick. As it turned out, Rodgers delivered what has to be considered an “eagle” of a season as many owners who had him certainly soared to the top of the standings. The Packers' QB goes into Week 17 with 4,643 passing yards, 48 total touchdowns, just 6 interceptions and eight 300-yard games. Daily Herald readers anointed him the 2011 fantasy MVP with exactly 50 percent of the vote. Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski finished second, while Eagles RB LeSean McCoy came in third. “Aaron Rodgers has done exactly what he was drafted in the first round to do: Put up huge numbers,” said reader Tim Kontek of Elk Grove Village. “Rodgers' basement is 17 fantasy points; you can't get more reliable production than that. Even Drew Brees, Tom Brady, and any running back, McCoy included, have had some 10-point days. If you had to choose between Vick and Rodgers in August, kudos to you if you took the sure thing.” (Last year's winner: Tom Brady) Biggest surprise During one draft, a longtime buddy of mine was picking before me and snared Antonio Gates late in the third round. He then looked at me and smiled, knowing I almost always take Gates in that league around the third or fourth round. As it turned out, I ended up getting the last laugh, although there was plenty of luck involved. About an hour after taking Jermichael Finley in the fifth round, I figured the 13th or 14th round was a good time to take a chance on a backup TE. I remember thinking, “Aaron Hernandez? Or Rob Gronkowski? Hernandez? Or Gronkowski?” Both finished the 2010 campaign hot and we had no idea which TE might explode in 2011. After a mental coin flip, I plastered Gronkowski's name on the board, and he helped pave the way to a points title in that league. Heading into the final week, Gronk has 82 catches for 1,219 yards and 16 total TDs, and he captured the biggest surprise award with 34 percent of the vote. Giants WR Victor Cruz was a close second with 26 percent. Among all receivers, only Calvin Johnson scored more points than Gronk, and Johnson needed a 316-yard, 3-TD finish in Weeks 15 and 16 to pass the Pats' super tight end. From now on, it's Gronkowski we should all be reaching for early in our drafts ... and maybe even in the first 20 picks. He's that good. (Last year's winner: Michael Vick) Biggest dud This vote was close for a while, but most of the late respondents said Titans RB Chris Johnson was this season's biggest dud. He “captured” 55 percent of the vote, with Andre Johnson and Michael Vick finishing second and third, respectively. Johnson, 17th among RBs in fantasy points, has just 4 touchdowns with 986 rushing yards and 369 receiving. In standard leagues, here's the point totals Johnson owners got from him the first nine weeks: 4-6-7-11-12-bye-3-4-10. And while one player can't totally kill a fantasy team, the owners who had Johnson in my two leagues went a combined 7-19. (Last year's winner: Randy Moss) Comeback player In a tight race, Carolina's Steve Smith (47.3 percent) beat out Miami's Reggie Bush (36.8 percent) for the comeback player of the year. After an abysmal 554-yard, 2-TD campaign in 2009, Smith was a guy most fantasy owners took a chance on in the middle-to-later rounds. After all, here was a receiver coming off a bad season with a rookie QB at the helm. How much upside could there be? Plenty, apparently. Smith made his owners' eyes pop out of their sockets in Week 1 with a 178-yard, 2-TD game at Arizona. And if you thought that was a fluke, he followed it up with a 156-yard day against the Packers. He's been up and down since, but it's tough to argue with a 73-catch, 1,308-yard season that included 6 TDs. Bush was a fantastic candidate too, especially if you take his numbers since Week 8 (117 yards from scrimmage with 6 TDs). Over that time, Bush ranks sixth in fantasy points among RBs behind Marshawn Lynch, LeSean McCoy, Ray Rice, Maurice Jones-Drew and Arian Foster. (Last year's winner: Vick) Rookie of the year Really, it was almost pointless to have readers vote for this award, but I wanted to see if it would be unanimous ... and it nearly was. Panthers QB Cam Newton astounded and amazed from the get-go this season and he is our landslide rookie of the year with 94 percent of the vote. Newton, who is FOURTH among all QBs in fantasy points, has thrown for 3,893 yards, thrown 20 TD passes and run for 14 more. He also has 674 rushing yards and ran for 50 yards or more eight times. (Last year's winner: Tampa Bay's Mike Williams)

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