Thursday, November 24, 2005

Professor Ellis D Trails Week Twelve Syllabus

A brief lesson on Tryptophan
Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that must be obtained from the diet. The unusual indole side chain of tryptophan is also the nucleus of the important neurotransmitter serotonin, which is biosynthesized from tryptophan. The aromatic portion of tryptophan also serves as an ultraviolet marker for detection of this amino acid either separately, or incorporated into proteins and enzymes, via ultraviolet spectrophotometry. Tryptophan is incorporated into proteins and enzymes at the molar rate of 1.1 percent compared to other amino acids making it the rarest amino acid found in proteins.

Now that you are all stuffed from your annual gorging, you can sit back relax and reflect in the glow that is Fantasy Football. Once again you have put your faith in the Professor and I don’t intend on letting you down. Now begins the time for teams to make their respective runs to the fast approaching playoffs. Teams either show their true colors during this period or they run into hiding like a Texans fan on Sunday. You will find who has the balls and who lies down. After this week, the picture should be clearer, but in this day and age, still murky at best.

Sunday, Nov. 27

BAL @ CIN, 1:00 pm
Baltimore is coming off their biggest win of the year against Pittsburgh. It was a one dimensional Pittsburgh team they faced with Tommy Maddox. Carson looked great against Indy and loves to play the ravens. This one could get ugly.

Chester Taylor – Has overtaken J-Lew and has proven that he deserves the starting job.

Carson Palmer – He has owned Baltimore is his young career.
Chad Johnson – He is a great compliment to Carson
Cincinnati Defense – These guys could create a lot of opportunities for the offense with a short field.

STL @ HOU, 1:00 pm
Marc Bulger was hurt again and this one is a little more serious than the first one. Now the Rams are going to have to ride the arm of Jaime Martin in order to make the playoffs. I am a Holt owner and I feel the pain. They get lucky by facing the Texans, but unlucky that they are playing at Houston. They pretty much have to win out to have a shot at a playoff berth, with losses to SF and Arizona, that doesn’t seem likely.

Torry Holt – How much will the loss of Bulger hurt Holt? In the times that Martin has started he has favored Bruce. However against Houston everyone should thrive.
Stephen Jackson – Houston gives up the most fantasy points to RB’s in the league. They are pitiful. I have seen better tackling in pee wee leagues.
Isaac Bruce – He looked real good last week and finally looks healthy from the dreaded turf toe. Start him with confidence.

Andre Johnson – If he was going to come around at all, it would be this week against a STL pass defense that is the worst in the league in giving up points to wide receivers.

CAR @ BUF, 1:00 pm
Carolina is a schizophrenic team. They have a good record but the best team they have beaten was Tampa. With losses to New Orleans, Miami and beating the likes of Minnesota, Green Bay, Arizona, the Jets and Detroit( by only one point), I’m not sure if this team can hang. We’ll see as they have two games against division opponent Atlanta coming and a rematch with Tampa. Their schedule is a lot easier than I thought. Buffalo’s pass defense decided last week to join its run defense in being awful. This team is actually getting worse as the season progresses. Loseman is not an NFL quarterback.

Stephen Davis – He might find the end zone this week, I just don't think he will. The panthers have had a lot of trouble putting it in the endzone.
Steve Smith – I was playing a team last week that had Steve Smith and when I saw how low the score was, I was sure Smith got nothing. Hmmm, 14/169. WOW. I lost by one point. He is one of the best in the league at getting separation.

Willis McGahee – He showed last week that he was not deserved of his high preseason ranking. He just seems to not be able to get it done against strong rush defenses. This week he faces the third best, you do the math.

SF @ TEN, 1:00 pm
San Fran almost upset Seattle last week and that just goes to show you that division games are usually close. This one is not a division game. Tennessee blows them away.

Ken Dorsey – This guy showed me something last week, that he can actually play football. That pass to Lloyd was awesome.
Brandon Lloyd – He is really the only option in this offense. That isn’t saying much, but still.

Steve McNair – He has definitely disappointed many this year who thought that because he was healthy, he would blow up. He hasn’t sucked, but he hasn’t performed either.
He should do well against a defense that as soon as someone comes back from injury another guy goes down.
Chris Brown – He will show why he is the number one back in Tennessee.

NE @ KC, 1:00 pm
I feel for New England this year, ok no I don’t, I love it. Bill Belichik is not the supreme master that he is given credit for and when you lose two major coordinators it is going to hurt. People will talk about injuries, give me a break, there have been so many injuries this year that is not a viable excuse. It looks like Trent is starting to find a rhythm in the passing game, finally. Now he goes against a pass defense that only gives up fewer points to quarterbacks than the 49ers.

Trent Green – He will exploit a once great defense in an embarrassing manner. I can’t wait.
Larry Johnson – This guy is a superstar. I knew it when he was running for the Nittany Lions. He was the only option there behind a good line and still got 200 yards a game. If you are in a keeper, hold on to this cat.
Eddie Kennison – He turned it on towards the end of last year and, if last week was any inclination of things to come, then start him with conviction.

CHI @ TB, 1:00 pm
Chicago has a great defense. Too bad their offense is pathetic. Muhammed plays like he forgets where to run and when he actually catches the ball, he seems to run at defenders instead of away from them. Tampa is clutch right now. A two pointer to win one week and then a field goal on the road the next to win. Gruden is smiling in Tampa and Simms is playing like his poppy.

Thomas Jones – Tampa hasn’t been playing against the run like they were earlier in the year. If the Bears don’t get down too early then he could do well.

Chris Simms – He comes back to earth against a Bears Defense that can hit like trucks.
Joey Galloway – He’ll probably get a score this week. He has my vote for comeback player of the year, even over Steve Smith.

SD @ WAS, 1:00 pm
When San Diego wins, they average winning by nineteen points. When they lose they lose by an average of three points. They could easily be 8-2 and need to get their pass defense in order if they have hopes of playing with the big boys. Washington has lost three out of four and are playing more like they were predicted to at the beginning of the year. They need to start winning.

LT – The Skins are giving up about a hundred yards per game and a touchdown this season to opposing running backs, match that with the fact the LT didn’t have a spectacular game last week and SA did. Look out D.C.
Antonio Gates – Owners of this stud gasped when he was carted to the LOCKERROOM last week, but it looks as though they were just being precautionary. He might not have that big of a week, but if he plays, you have to start him.
Drew Brees – He won’t have anywhere near the week that he did last week.

Mark Brunell – Since scoring 30 points in my league against the Niners, he has averaged fewer than ten a game. I said watch for the decline of this guy and it seems to be happening just like I predicted.
Clinton Portis - Only Denver has given up less yards to RB’s than San Diego. Sorry Portis, you won’t have much success this week.
Santana Moss – Averaged 24 points a game during the first six and averaged 10 during the last four. As Brunell goes, so does Moss.

CLE @ MIN, 1:00 pm
Cleveland shocked the shit out of me last week. Mostly due to the performance of Droughns against Miami. They made Gus look awful and Sage even worse. That was not that difficult. Minnesota has been hot right now and if Moore can continue to play like he does than Minnesota should be able to take this one. Although their coach is Mike Tice, which means I predict a loss.

Charlie Frye – He looked pretty good at the end of the game on Sunday aside from that INT. He won’t start, but I think he gets a chance to throw on a weak pass defense that misses Fred Smoot.
Rueben Droughns – He should be able to smash this defense, but I said the same thing last week for the Packers.

Brad Johnson – He couldn’t drive a car against an competing defense. He needs to retire. Where is Randall Cunningham when you need him.
Mewelde Moore – He is a playmaker with ability that Bennett wishes he possessed.
Jermaine Wiggins – He is surprisingly nimble for a big guy. His blocking is dreadful, but his hands are soft.

MIA @ OAK, 4:05 pm
This team needs a quarterback. Gus Frerotte is more inconsistent than a generic pregnancy test. They would be better of running the entire game. That and if McMichael could catch a fucking ball. Oakland racks up the yards and keeps losing. They did put a nice defensive effort against Washington, but Kerry is not a clutch player.

Ronnie Brown – He is going to be good, if this team ever finds a quarterback
Randy McMichael – I keep saying he is due every week, but Oakland has only allowed 1 TE touchdown all year. I am still going to start him, but my only other option is Pollard with Joey “ I suck” Harrington throwing him the ball.

Kerry Collins – He got lucky that Miami’s defense got bit by the injury bug last week or he might have thrown 10 interceptions. Three is not out of the question.
Lamont Jordan – I honestly thought that Lamont didn’t have it in him to make it through a full season as a number one back. I know the season is not over, but he has outperformed the levels that I set for him.
Randy Moss – Remember he said that Kerry is a better quarterback than Culpepper, I think he might want to take that back. Randy made Jeff George look good. It’s almost time for Randy to officially give up.
Jerry Porter – This guy has actually started playing football the way he did a couple of years ago. I don’t see the trend continuing.

JAC @ ARI, 4:05 pm
Jacksonville is another team of many in this league of parity. They beat teams like Cincinnati, Seattle and Pittsburgh, but lose to the Rams and barely beat the Titans. They have a strength in their defense and can play with Indy if their offense can get it together. They could surprise some if they don’t choke along the way. Arizona is an appallingly bad team, however they do play better at home and if the Jaguars are not careful, they could be upset this week.

Byron Leftwich – Arizona played better against the pass early in the year, but not so good lately. If Jacksonville is to win this game, it will be on the arm of Byron.

Kurt Warner – He has had three strong games in a row, save the INT’s against Seattle. He loves his WR corp. and so he should. He is a good play this week, even against a Jaguars team only allowing 176 passing yards per game.
Boldin/Fitzgerald – I don’t see why these two both can’t do well with Warner throwing the ball. Especially with Arizona trailing so many games.

NYG @ SEA, 4:15 pm
People say that the Giants pass defense is a weakness, but they have only given up nine TD passes all year, good for a tie for second in the league. Seattle on the other hand has given up 12 touchdowns passing and only has nine interceptions. Seattle can’t afford to lose this one if they want home field. Holmgren needs to ride his train and that train is Shaun Alexander

Eli Manning – He is a good play if he gets into a rhythm with Plaxico and Shockey.
Tiki Barber – People often underestimate the Seahawks play against the run, yet they only surrender 85 yards a game and only three rushing touchdowns all year. Tiki will get his yards from scrimmage, but most likely won’t find the endzone.
Plaxico Burress – He has been on a stretch for the past few weeks of having a good game followed by a bad one followed by a good one and so on. I think he’ll have a solid week though.

Matt Hasselback – He can prove this week that the Seahawks are the team to beat, but he would wiser to let his halfback do it.
Shaun Alexander – He is Shaun Alexander and he might break the touchdown record this year, if Holmgren’s passing balls don’t swell up too much.
Darrell Jackson – He looks to be one more week away.

GB @ PHI, 4:15 pm
My Eagles are having a bad season, so it happens to the best of them. It happened to New England in between Super Bowls. It’s ok. I just hate the fact that I have to sit through these games. Green Bay seems like a team that is lost. Brett needs to let go. They have been completely decimated by injury and need to start looking to the future. It is futile to continue down the road they are going. They drafted Rodgers, now let him play when the games mean nothing.

Brett Favre – With the way the Eagle’s defense has been playing lately, I bet I could thrown for 250 and a couple of TD’s against them
Donald Driver – He has stepped up admirably in the face of injuries, but he can’t do it all by himself.

Mike McMahon – If the Eagles would play shotgun the entire game, then McMahon might be an option. He has Reggie Brown who has been the best WR draft pick by the Eagles in a long time.
Reggie Brown – The only deep threat on the field when the Eagles are on offense.
Brian Westbrook – He is a top performer and I will love to steal him late in drafts next year.
LJ Smith – He seemed to gain a nice rapport with McMahon during the Giants game.

NO @ NYJ, 8:30 pm
The Saints have tried to display courage in a season on the road. The Jets are a poorly run organization. These two juggernauts collide this week in New Jersey. This one should be a snooze fest to say the least.

Antowain Smith/ Aaron Stecker – The Jets run defense is putrid. The Saints should have no problem controlling the clock against them.
Aaron Brooks – the lone bright spot on the Jets is their pass defense. It’s a shame that the Saints shouldn’t need to pass against them.

NY Jets QB – Nobody is worth playing
Curtis Martin – How fast can you go from the rushing champ to fantasy free agency, ask Curtis.
Laveranues Coles – He must be kicking himself for leaving Washington.

Monday, Nov. 28

PIT @ IND, 9:00 pm
Does anybody remember last year when New England was rolling through the league and went into Pittsburgh and laid an egg. Well I'm sure Indianapolis does. You see, the theory is that no team can go undefeated and I am a firm believer in that philosophy with any normal team. Indianapolis is not a normal team. Peyton is a Coach, Coordinator and Leader on that Offense. He is a motivator. This team has so many facets that can be at times impossible to be dealt with. Punter Hunter Smith has 28 punts in ten games, that in itself is amazing. The next closest is Cincinatti with 39.

Ben Roethlisberger – If Pitt has wants any chance to win this game, he has to play. There is no way Batch or Maddox leads them to victory over the Colts.
Hines Ward – They are going to need a spectacular game from him to win. I know Pitt wins games by running the football and they are going to need that to keep the ball away from Indy, but to score they are going to have to be able to throw the ball.

Peyton Manning – This will be his toughest test since throwing a 4 against Jacksoville in Week 2. The Steelers will have to contain him and are one of the only teams with the capabilities of doing so. Translating that to the field is a whole different story. I don't think he has a monster game this week and will need to rely heavily on the run to control and win the game.
Edgerrin James – This guy is a monster. After having to deal with tragedy with the death of his brother, he has played like a beast and those who are nervous that he will sit during the fantasy playoffs shouldn’t fret. He will get his.
Marvin Harrison – He hasn’t scored a touchdown in only three games this year. Marvin is still the man in Indy.

Top 10 Week 12 QB’s

1. Carson Palmer
2. Peyton Manning
3. Tom Brady
4. Brett Favre
5. Matt Hasselback
6. Trent Green
7. Eli Manning
8. Steve McNair
9. Kurt Warner
10. Byron Leftwich

Top 10 Week 12 RB’s

1. Shaun Alexander
2. Larry Johnson
3. LaDanian Tomlinson
4. Edgerrin James
5. Lamont Jordan
6. Steven Jackson
7. Brian Westbrook
8. Warrick Dunn
9. Tiki Barber
10. Chris Brown

Top 10 Week 12 WR’s

1. Steve Smith
2. Chad Johnson
3. Larry Fitzgerald
4. Torry Holt
5. Santana Moss
6. Randy Moss
7. Plaxico Burress
8. Hines Ward
9. Marvin Harrison
10. Donald Driver

Top Week 12 TE’s

1. The usual characters

Sleeper of the Week
Andre Johnson – This guy has put together two pretty solid weeks in a row and this week he faces a weak STL defense. He could possibly find the endzone for the first time all year.

Bust of the Week
Willis McGahee – I said in the beginning of the year that this sucka was not worthy of a top ten pick and so far I have been vindicated. McGahee has had trouble as of late. I don’t know if that is due to the fact that Holcombe is not playing or because teams are just playing better defense. It seems that defenses are able to stack 8 men or more in the box and are begging Losman to beat them in the air, which he has been less than able. The Panthers will be hungry after a loss last week to the Bears, so for the second week in a row I recommend sitting McGahee.

Well, I hope that your holiday goes well and your fantasy games go even better. I must run as I have a class to teach on the effects of psychoactives on the human brain whilst succumbing to the rigors of fantasy sports. Study hard and stay on track.

As always, go with your gut and don’t look back.

………..Professor Ellis D Trails.

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