Found September 20, 2012 on
2 Guys Fantasy:
New England Patriots
New Orleans Saints
In his first full season as a starting quarterback, Matthew Stafford threw for over 5,000 yards. The only other players in NFL history to accomplish that feat are Dan Marino, Tom Brady, and Drew Brees- pretty good company. Stafford obviously has tremendous ability but trying to decipher what makes him successful becomes a little more complicated. Since Stafford has been so injury prone throughout his career, we have a lot fewer games to evaluate when dealing with Stafford, unlike last week’s hot seat participant Drew Brees, and we need to also take into account the maturation process that Stafford continues to go through. With that disclaimer in place, let’s get into Stafford the quarterback.
As I mentioned previously, Matthew Stafford had an incredible 2011 season. He threw for more than 5,000 yards and 41 TDs. One of the reasons he threw for so many yards is that Stafford led the league in passing attempts. Despite the fact that Stafford threw the ball so frequently, the Lions still were able to finishing in the top 10 in the league in rushing. Combining these two elements of their offensive attack made the Lions such a scary opponent in 2011 and continue to make them scary in 2012- as long as Stafford stays healthy.
So who benefits most from Stafford running the Lions offense? The answer in 2012 might not be what it was in 2011.
The stats show that Brandon Pettigrew is going to continue to become a larger part of the Lions offense.
The Detroit Lions Tight Ends-
Before we mention a tight end we should make it clear that the person who will always be the number one option in Detroit is Calvin Johnson. Johnson possesses talent that few other receivers in the league do and the number of opportunities to catch the ball his quarterback gives him makes him so dangerous. In 2011, 24% of all of Stafford’s passes went to Johnson (while 24% of his 2012 throws have been headed the same way). What often gets overlooked is the fact that over 30% of his other throws in 2011 also went to other receivers- 203 throws to be exact. This stat no doubt led many fantasy pundits to predict a breakout season for Titus Young due to the amount of opportunity Stafford offered his receivers. What has happened early though in the 2012 season is that Stafford has looked more frequently to his tight ends. Although stats can be misleading this early in the season I do not feel this particular one is- Stafford has looked the way of his tight ends 35% of the time while only 22% of his throws have gone to receivers not named Johnson. The NFL is a copycat league and the success Tom Brady is having throwing to his tight ends is no doubt influencing young quarterbacks like Stafford. What does this mean for your fantasy team. It might be time to trade for Brandon Pettigrew.
The Lions running backs-
You never know exactly who the Lions running back will be, but the fact that Stafford is so explosive as a passer makes whoever finds himself in the backfield is a solid fantasy option. As I mentioned before, the Lions finished in the top 10 in the league in rushing in 2011. Although the numbers are not as great after 2 games in 2012, you have to take into account the fact that one of those games was played against one of the best rushing defenses we have seen in years- the San Francisco 49ers. Kevin Smith is the guy right now but it will pay to keep an eye over the next couple years to see if the Lions can find a feature back to bring into the mix. And yes, that back could be Mikel Leshoure who is due back from injury shortly although he has an uphill climb to get there.
At only 24, Matthew Stafford is beyond his years as a quarterback. He runs a high-powered offense that can only improve as he becomes more seasoned. At some point in the near future there will be a changing of the guard on the Mount Rushmore of quarterbacks as Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Drew Brees move aside. Stafford looks like a lock to take one of the available spots.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
ALLEN PARK, Mich. Its been 510 days since the Detroit Lions selected Illinois running back Mikel Leshoure in the second round of the 2011NFL Draft with the 57th pick overall.
Finally, at long last, its time to see what Leshoure can do in a regular-season NFL game when the Lions face the Tennessee Titans Sunday afternoon.
After missing all of last season following surgery for a...
Did you miss out on Mikel Leshoure, Andre Brown, or some of the top NFL Fantasy Football pickups of the week? Have no fear, there is more out there. Make sure your going to the waiver wire to acquire players that will help your team and not just trying to get the next breakout player that will post top numbers. If you’re in a 10 man league or less, then you shouldn’t sweat...
According to Tim Twentyman of DetroitLions.com, Lions cornerback Chris Houston says he’s playing in this week’s game against the Titans.
“I’m running around healthier than I was the last couple of weeks. I’m about 95 percent and I’ll be ready to go this week,” said Houston, per Twentyman.
Louis Delmas is long past having a speedy return from August knee surgery, but Detroit Lions coach Jim Scwhartz indicated today that Delmas return still could be a ways off.
Asked about his oft-injured safety's recovery, Schwartz said Delmas is really not day-to-day. Hes still more week-to-week.
Delmas underwent surgery on his left knee Aug. 7, after dealing with...
According to the Lions' official website, Lions receiver Calvin Johnson (ankle) was a full participant in Friday's practice and is listed as probable for Week 3.Fantasy Spin:Johnson was never a threat to miss Week 3. The Lions will face a subpar Titans defense this week, so we like Megatron to pick up his first touchdown of the season.
The Lions claimed cornerback Jerome Murphy off waivers from the New Orleans Saints today and released Kevin Barnes, who played sparingly the last two weeks, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reports.
Murphy, a third-round pick in 2010 out of South Florida, made three tackles in the first two games of the season for the Saints and was waived on Monday.
The Lions are at critical...
Lions running back Mikel Leshoure, who was suspended for the team's first two games, was at practice Wednesday. The Detroit Free Press reports Leshoure took the second rep at running back during the team's skeleton drills. Source: CBSSports Attached Thumbnails
For the Detroit Lions, in a need of a game to get right, and the Tennessee Titans, in need of a strong showing before they lose control of their season, Sunday’s game has a lot of importance. The Lions do not want to be 1-2, and the Titans definitely do not want to be 0-3. However, while this looks like a game the Lions can dominate they cannot afford to play down to their competition...
Lions receiver Calvin Johnson, who returned to practice Thursday after missing Wednesday with a sore ankle, said defensive backs are taking liberties with the replacement officials.
"They are (getting away with more)," Johnson said. "They definitely held me on a third-down situation in the first half (Sunday against the Niners). It was in the middle of the field...
Lions cornerback Jacob Lacey is officially listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Tennessee Titans.
Lacey had not appeared on the injury report this week, but has sustained a toe injury, and will be a game-time decision.
Lions tight end Tony Scheffler (calf), safety Louis Delmas (knee) and linebacker Travis Lewis (quad) are officially listed as doubtful.
According to Anwar Richardson of MLive.com, Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson, safety Louis Delmas and tight end Tony Scheffler aren’t practicing today.
Johnson missed some practice time last week with a foot injury. The Lions might be holding him out because if his foot.
Delmas is still working his way back from a knee injury.
Michael Crabtree didn’t exactly call out his teammates before last week’s game against the Detroit Lions, but he did issue a challenge to his offensive comrades to keep up with the high standard of performance being put forth regularly by San Francisco’s rugged defense and superior special teams units. Crabtree certainly has lived up to that standard himself during the Niners’ 2-0 start.
Detroit Lions (1-1) at Tennessee Titans (0-2)
Before the season, I identified 5 overrated and 5 underrated teams, with the idea of betting on them (or against them) until they proved me wrong or the odds makers caught up. This served me well as I’m 10-4 this year on games involving those 10 teams (and one of those losses is because I abandoned shipped on the Bills after week 1...
Chris Johnson has 21 yards on 19 carries for the season and it ranks as arguably the biggest bewilderment’s of the season.
Shocking to say the least, CJ2K was selected as a mid-late first round draft pick regardless of whether or not you are in a PPR league.
Many feel they should Johnson in for a bag of golf balls,...
Omega-TronPhoto Credit: Dave Hogg
Calvin Johnson is an elite WR and that doesn’t figure to change in 2012. However, the owners who paid the high price for his services on draft/auction day should be concerned about the return. Paying the high cost for Johnson was like spending top-dollar on the best prostitute money can buy. You know you are getting a sure thing that won’t...