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Well here we are – the last week of the fantasy football season. Congrats to Mike and Joel for climbing the mountain to get to this point. You have both battled through some very tough competition the last 2 weeks – but now it all comes down to this moment. For the teams that sold their soul to potentially be in this spot (i.e. Kyle and Reid), this match up is a crushing reminder that you can’t buy your way into the fantasy championship…you need to earn it (with a little bit of stat correction luck). Now with that overview out of the way…let’s take a look at this Morristown Classic Finale.

#1 Clark Kent vs. #4 Orange Nation: If you would have told me at the start of the season that an Owen was going to be in the fantasy championship, I would have put my money on Phil. Joel has just not shown that killer instinct that it takes to get to the promise land – but 2016 has been a year of upsets. Since joining the league in 2009, this is only the third time that Orange Nation/Joel has made the playoffs and the first time that they have made it to the championship match up. For Mike, he’s been here before – all the way back in 2011, Mike found a way to not only make it to the championship match up – but come away with the gold. But this year is different – this year the winner of this match up will walk away with the newly coveted WDE Rumble Fantasy Football Trophy. To be the first is always special – it’s only a question of who will be able to close the deal on this Christmas weekend? Let’s dive in. With both teams coming in as 200+ points favorites, this has the potential to be one of the highest scoring fantasy championships of all time. But if the last few weeks have told us anything, you can’t believe the projections. For Mike, the player to watch will be Matthew Stafford. After getting snubbed for a Pro Bowl slot, will Stafford come out on primetime and show everyone just the type of high level caliber talent that he actually is? It’s going to be an interesting night for Mike as he roots for both offensives to have an explosive night (Zeke going wild against the Detroit defense). On the flip side, you have Orange Nation that will be relying on the servers of David Johnson once again to deliver him to the promise land. It’s ironic that the best draft pick that Joel made this year – was a choice from 2015. David Johnson has been nothing short of spectacular this season and is definitely the engine the drives the Orange Nation train – but he faces his toughest test of the season as he goes up against the Seahawks at home. The last time Johnson faced off against the Seahawks, he scored 23+ points – you know, about average. If Joel does win the championship, he will owe it all to David Johnson and the spectacular season that he’s having. So with all that being said – who’s walking away with the trophy? We want to believe that Clark Kent can bring home the gold and keep it in the grasp of the Championship Alumni – but Orange Nation seems like a team of destiny. Everything is going their way….including the new WDE Rumble Championship.

WDESPN Prediction: Orange Nation

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Playoffs! We’re talking about Playoffs?!

That’s right, the time has finally arrived – after the hope of the 1st part of the season (the draft), the soul crushing nature of the 2nd part of the season (the regular season) comes the stress inducing part of the season – the playoffs! For the 8 teams that made it to the promise land, congrats…it’s an honor just to be nominated. It’s also an honor to get a weekly awards, let’s see who won one last week:

WDE Rumble Week 13 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): The Outlaws
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): TheMistocles
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Clark Kent
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): ATLiens Rises

Now we take look forward to the matches that await us in the 1st week of the playoffs. As we all know, anything can happen on Sunday – who will move on to the next round and who gets to enjoy their holiday season? Let’s find out…

#1 Clark Kent vs. #8 Nashville Ninjas: This is one of those rare back to back 1st round playoff matches – will history repeat itself?  These two teams faced off against each other in week 13 and week 2, both resulting in a Clark Kent victory. Amazingly enough – Mike can steamroll almost any team in this league EXCEPT the Ninjas. The average margin of victory in this series is just 8 points…that’s raiser thin. It’s hard to beat a team three times in a season and back to back – is Mike up to the challenge? Both of these coaches have tasted fantasy gold before – and each wants to get back to that sweet taste. The player to watch for Clark Kent will be Demaryius Thomas because if Paxton Lynch plays again, he might not be that great of an option. Heck, even with Simien playing – he may not be that great of an option. In the last 5 week, Thomas has scored over 20 points only once and will be going up against a Tennessee defense that can be difficult at best. For the NInjas, the player to watch will be Eric Berry – he showed up in a big way in week 13 coming away with the pick 6 and the PAT returned for TD. Can he pull off that magic once again on Thursday night? Eric seems to shine in the spotlight so that plus his color rush uniform should result in a magical day for EB. Ultimately it comes down to firepower, Mike/Clark Kent has alot of it and the Ninjas are slightly lacking. Clark Kent has a much bigger margin of error compared to the points projection from Yahoo. While it would be highly interesting if the Ninjas were able to pull off the upset, we believe the #1 seed will safely move on to the next round of domination.

WDESPN Prediction: Clark Kent

#2 The Footballas vs. #7 Fear the Neckbeard: You want to talk about two teams coming into the fantasy playoffs with little momentum behind them, look no further then this match up. The Footballas are coming off a humiliating loss to Bring It – the team that sold all their good players this season to make a run next year. Somehow PRR find a way to get to 5 wins AND stick it to the his division leader. On the other hand, you have Fear the Neckbeard – he who purchased most of the good players from Bring It, despite all that purchasing found himself in 7th place. How much does trading to get to 7th place cost you? Apparently a 2nd, 4th, 9th 12th and 10th round. You make all those moves to win the championship – not just barely make it into the playoffs, so will Kyle be able to pull off the upset? For The Footballas, the player to watch will be Julio Jones – he supposedly has a minor turf toe injury so it will be interesting to see how that affects his ability to play against the lowly LA Rams. For Fear the Neckbeard, the player to watch will be Brandon Marshall. Now that the Jets have turned over the reins of the team to Bryce Petty – it will be a big mystery what happens to Brandon (and Matt Forte’s) fantasy value. Never before has so much been riding on the Jets to actually perform up to par – but if there’s one team that can make almost any other team look goods, it’s the 49ers. Looking at the match up, this has the potential to be one of the lowest scoring games of the fantasy playoffs – more like a slugfest instead of a sustain aerial attack. These teams are probably really evenly matched. The last time these two teams faced off was in week 1 and it wasn’t even close….so will history repeat itself? Probably not – where there’s blood, there’s sharks and Kyle has definitely been a shark this season with his wheeling and dealing with PRR. We think the shark eats and moves on with the upset.

WDESPN Prediction: Fear the Neckbeard

#3 ATLiens Rises vs. #6 Family Owned: These are two fairly strong teams going against each other to show who’s got the biggest MO going at the moment. Both teams crushed players that were at the very bottom of the 2016 Rumble ladder – now it’s time to beat up on someone their own size. The player to watch for Family Owned will be Melvin Gordon. He’s been a bit of a revelation this season, scoring no less than 10 points since week 7 – he’s probably singlehandedly kept Family Owned afloat in the league this season. But in week 14, he’s got a slight challenge in front of him in the form of the Carolina defense – that hasn’t been great, but has (until last Sunday night) been a bend but don’t break defense. Last week they broke and it’s possibly that Gordon could find yet another stud fantasy day against them. For ATLiens , the player to watch will be the Vikings defense – who will be going up against the gift giving Blake Bortles. It’s quite possible that they break 70 fantasy points in this game – which amazing enough, they have not done. So who will come away with the victory in this one. Just like with Clark Kent, due to the trades that he has made – his margin for victory is much larger than Family Owned – but you never know what will happen on any given Sunday, right? With that said, ATLiens will come out of this one a little bruised but moving onto the second round.

WDESPN Prediction: ATLiens Rises

#4 Orange Nation vs. #5 The Outlaws: Even though Joel and Marques have never really over the phone, Nation has had the Outlaws number all season long. These two teams have faced off against each other twice and it really hasn’t been that close either team.The only thing that is readily apparent about this match up is that if the Outlaws want to have a prayer of beating this squad they are going to need to score 220+ points to make that happen. Which probably isn’t all that likely, but I digress. For Orange Nation, the player to watch will be DeMarco Murray going up against the vaunted Denver defense. Not only has Murray been in decline for the last few weeks – he hasn’t scored more than 20 points in a game since week 10 – but he’s going up against one of the top defenses in the league. Will Murray be able to break out against the Broncos and at least have a high statistical day with a few scores to boot? For The Outlaws, the player to watch will be Malcom Mithcell. With Gronk out for the season and Amendola out on the mend, Mitchell has really found a place in the Patriots offense that will hopefully lead to long term fantasy success. Since Week 11, Mitchell has not scored less than 10 points and should continue to eat against the vaunted and spotty Baltimore secondary. Marques relying on a Patriot to get him to the fantasy playland – will wonders never cease! For us, this is a clear cut case of the team with more fire power just crushing the poor spirit of the Outlaws and sending them spiralling into the fantasy off season. So Orange Nation will continue to find a way to nation build and move on to the next round of the fantasy playoffs.

WDESPN Prediction: Orange Nation

Well we have finally made it – the end of the regular season is at hand. Before we take a look at what awaits the league in week 13, let’s take a look back at the award winners for the previous 2 weeks:

WDE Rumble Week 11 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): Orange Nation
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): Nashville Ninjas
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Fear the Neckbeard
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): Orange Nation

WDE Rumble Week 12 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): ATLiens Rises
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): The Outlaws
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):The Footballas
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): ATLiens Rises

Now our attention turns to the final week of the regular season. While 7 of the 8 teams have their playoff spot locked, there’s still some question of where will everyone end up placed when the dust settles on Monday night. While it’s pretty much set in stone who the number 1 and number 2 seeds are – it’s pretty much anyone’s ball game for the other playoff spot. So the question is will certain teams roar into the postseason with a dominant record or will certain teams crawl in and just hope for the best? Technically speaking, there’s only one team that has been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs and that’s Macheteros (who’s only one game out of being in the playoff mix). So let’s dive in and find out the key matchups are:

Texasseans vs. Family Owned: Now one might look at this and say why would a match up featuring the 11th best team in the league be the headline match this week? Well as strange as it sounds, both teams are kind of fighting for a playoff spot (even if it’s a longshot playoff spot). A win by Family Owned and he’s going to the postseason but a win by the Texasseans could conceivably bring Phil back to the promise land that he yearns so much for year after year but it would take some work by other teams to make that a possibility. Even if he doesn’t make it – playing spoiler to actual playoff teams is an Owen tradition. So for the Texasseans, the player to watch will be Jameis Winston. In his first game of the season, Winston went off and score 45 points and he’s only come close to that total one other time this season. Will Winston be able to finish the season the way he started and pull the Texasseans to yet another upset victory? For Family Owned, the player to watch will be the Denver defense. They are one of the main reasons that Cory has been so successful this season – they have only scored below 20 points once this entire season…now that’s a string of dominant performances. Going up against Blake Bortles is a recipe for success sometimes for defenses, will this be yet another dominant performance by the Broncos to propel? From our standpoint, this is going to be a pretty close match and will really come down to which player has an outlier of a performance (either good or bad). I think that Family Owned will win this game, but I could really go either way on this. With his shocking performance last week against his brother, you just can’t underestimate that scrappy little guy (he’s smaller than Reid – that’s a fact!). Had these two played last week, the Texasseans would have beat Family Owned as easily as they beat Orange Nation…but that’s last week and this week is week 13, where Family Owned gets the job done.

WDESPN Prediction: Family Owned

The Outlaws vs. TheMistocles: This is our first playoff entrant vs playoff hopeful spotlight match. For weeks now the Outlaws have been pretty much locked into the 5th spot in the draft – never joining the elite 4 of the league or the bottom 4 – just right there in the middle with their average team. Now this team is in a position where a loss could send them plummeting from 5th to 7th place in the playoff race – so it’s crunch time for them. For TheMistocles, they are technically still alive in the playoff race – a win here gives them at least a reasonable shot at making it to the regular season promise land…but it would really come down to point differential. This could end up being a rough week for the Outlaws as they try to find points somewhere on this team – the player to watch will be Devontae Booker. Booker has been extremely disappointing from a fantasy perspective for the last few weeks but one thing is for certain, he’s definitely getting the workload that makes it very hard to bench him. Could this be the week that Booker somehow puts in a respectful performance against the lowly Jaguars defense? For TheMistocles, the player to watch will be Jordan Howard – he has definitely had some up and down moments this season with a high of 30 points and a low of 3 – the question for Maurice is which Howard will show up against the lowly 49ers defense? If history is an indication, probably the one that put up 30 points. This is not looking to good for the commish – when his team is in a tight spot this season, they tend to collapse…will this be another collapse? We tend to think so and the Outlaws will be waiting to see how far they’ve dropped down the polls come Monday morning.

WDESPN Prediction: TheMistocles

Bring It vs. The Footballs: It’s the top of the Smackdown hierarchy vs. the bottom as these two legendary Rumble coaches face off in a game that has the chance to have some playoff ramifications. A win here by Bring It! Would cap off a disappointing but semi-amazing year (winning 5 games while selling off your best players and getting draft picks for next year, not a bad year) and propel them to the upper echelon of fantasy players for the next year. A loss for Bring It would eliminate them from playoff contention and make Todd feel more comfortable about his team. For Bring It, the player to watch will be Tyler Gabriel. He has had an amazing 4 week span of scoring more than 18 points in a game – and going up against the Chiefs bottom ten fantasy secondary with a red hot Matt Ryan throwing to him could lead to more fantasy good for Taylor as we close out the regular season. For the Footballas, the player to watch will be Julio Jones. While Taylor has been pretty hot over the last few weeks, Jones has fluctuated a bit more. But it’s possible that both players have good fantasy days this time around – it’s just a matter of who will have the better day. For our money, we think that the Footballas will come away with this and it won’t be close as Todd closes out his complete domination of the Smackdown brand in the 16-17 season.

WDESPN Prediction: The Footballas

Including this week, there are 3 more weeks left in the fantasy football regular season. It’s gone by quickly and slowly at the same time – we haven’t had nearly as many devastating injuries as we had last season and yet somehow things are fairly tight as we go into the homestretch. Only one team has wrapped up their spot in the playoffs, but everyone else is still legitimately in this thing. Before we dive into the last bye week of the season – let’s take a look back at our award winners from previous weeks:

WDE Rumble Week 9 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): Clark Kent
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): Fear the Neckbeard
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Family Owned
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): Orange Nation

WDE Rumble Week 10 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): The Mistocles
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): The Outlaws
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Nashville Ninjas
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): The Mistocles

Now with history behind us, let us look forward to some of the prime matches that await us this weekend:

Bring It vs. Fear the Neckbeard [Rivalry]: This match up is interesting from the perspective that Phillip and Kyle have been the best of buds when it comes to trading players this season. Whether it’s trading Tom Brady or Eric Kendricks, these two definitely are keeping their best trades within the Warner Robins family. But now the must face off again for the second time this year – will the result be pretty similar to their week 2 match up? A win for Bring It keeps his playoffs hopes alive for at least one more win, while a win for FTB solidifies their spot in the playoffs and potentially pushes them up to a higher seed. Both teams have something to play for (besides trading draft picks) which should make for a pretty exciting game. The player to watch in this game for PRR will be Joe Flacco – Mr. Erratic himself. He will be going up against the Dallas defense that has been pretty solid this year, but Flacco can give you an amazing performance or he can flutter it all away in the blink of an eye. He hasn’t had a game over 35 points this year, but miracles always abound in Big D. For FTB, the player to watch will be Todd Gurley. Not so much for his play, but for the play of his QB which will affect his ability to run. In the past 2 weeks, Gurley has not scored more than 10 fantasy points…10! And putting a rookie QB in against a surging Miami defense doesn’t exactly inspire confidence. But if there’s one player (not named Ezekiel Elliot) that could overcome such a disadvantage, it would be Todd Gurley. While Yahoo is predicting a decently close game, they are underestimating Tom Brady going up against the woefully inadequate 49ers defense. It will be a miracle if they can keep Brady under 50 fantasy points this weekend. And because of that one choice – we believe that FTB will crush Bring It! In an unforgiving way. Hopefully they can still be friends after it’s all said and done…hopefully.

WDESPN Prediction: Fear The Neckbeard

Macheteros vs. The Mistocles: This is quite possibly a loser go home match. Both teams are hanging on by just the thinnest of of shreds and only 2 games separate them. Macheteros has beaten no team in their division while TheMistocles has only beaten 1…this one has the potential to be both tight and ugly at the same time. For Machteros, the player to watch will be Cameron Meredith. With the sudden suspension to Alshon Jefferey, it thrusts Cameron into the spotlight once again. Early in the year, he burst onto the scene with 2 20+ point games…but since then, it’s been nothing but disappointment after disappointment until last week. While we might guess that Jay Cutler will throw his Alshon balls to Cameron, Cutler is nothing if not unpredictable. Going up against the Giants that has a defense pass defense, it could be a very interesting game for the undrafted rookie. For TheMistocles, the player to watch will be Doug Baldwin. Last week, on primetime he went off by catching 3 TDs. Could this be the restart of the fantasy run that Wilson and Baldwin went on last year that almost lead teams to fantasy gold? Maurice is definitely hoping that’s the case after Baldwin just decimated his lovely Patriots last Sunday night. As of right now, Yahoo is expecting this to be a pretty close game – but we don’t think it will be. One of these teams will disappoint and not leave up to their scoring potential…who will it be? (it’s going to be Chris/Macheteros).

WDESPN Prediction: The Mistocles

Family Owned vs. The Outlaws: Both of these teams are in the very thick of the playoff race, sitting at the 5 and 6 spot. Last week, the Outlaws couldn’t get the job done against the number 4 team in the league – will they fall prey to the same issue again this week (i.e. players that are allergic to touchdowns)? Under normal circumstances, both of these teams would be putting out their best to take the other down…but bye weeks are a strange mistress. Cory will be coming into this match up missing his QB1, RB1, K1 and D1 – that’s alot of ones to be missing when going up against the Outlaws. So basically every other player is going to be interesting for Family Owned because they have alot of ground to make up if Cory doesn’t make some add/drops before Sunday. For The Outlaws, the player to watch is Jay Ajayi. After his 3 monster weeks of points – he came back to earth a little bit with a sub 10 points agam (thanks to the touchdown vulturing of Damien Williams). But this week, Jay can get his groove going again by taking down the hapless Rams. The coaching staff knows that this should be a business trip to Los Angeles and utilize Jay quite a bit – will it result in a monster game for the Miami wonder? It’s definitely not going to be easy – because nothing this season has been, but The Outlaws should be able to sneak away with a W in this match thanks to having a fully stocked roster – ready for the bye week. 🙂

WDESPN Prediction: The Outlaws

We here at WDESPN hoped that everyone had a great Sports Equinox weekend. It was a week in which anything seemed possible as the the equinox is a rare and special occasion. You know what’s also special – winning an award! So let’s see who are winners are from the last few weeks:

WDE Rumble Week 7 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): Clark Kent
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): Family Owned
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Macheteros
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): Clark Kent

WDE Rumble Week 8 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): The Outlaws
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): Orange Nation
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Nashville Ninjas
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): The Outlaws

It’s amazing how time flies – we’re heading into week 9 of the fantasy football season! Only 5 more weeks left in the regular season before we head into the promise land known as the playoffs. Now contrary to popular belief, the teams at the bottom of the league are technically still in the race for a playoff spot. Only 2 games separate the number 8 team and the number 12 team. And as we all know, you only need to get hot at the right time to ride into the fantasy sunset as a champion. With bye weeks still wreaking havoc on teams, which teams will be able to overcome their internal challenges and win one more game to get them closer that fantasy gold?

The Outlaws vs. ATLien Rises [Rivarly]: Even though there is alot of animosity between these two teams over the year, Marques actually owes a debt of gratitude to Reid for actually saving his season early on. Before the season started, Marques stupidly drafted fragile Tony Romo to be his main QB for the season and Andy Dalton was meant to back him up. Unfortunately, Tony was more fragile than anyone realized and was out for the season before the first game of the year. The Outlaws were looking like a team that would have to ride Andy Dalton to fantasy (fools) gold this year – but then Reid dropped Matt Ryan for Spencer Ware and Marques picked up Matt Ryan for $5. Probably the best $5 spent this year as Matt has played at a MVP level for plenty of games this year. Combine that with the Freeman trade from last year and the chickens might be coming home to roost in this one against the ATLiens. For ATLiens Rises, the player to watch will be Drew Brees. Last week he was good but not great against the Seahawks at home. But now he’s playing with kryptonite this week i.e. away. As is well documented, Drew Brees is a monster when play at the Superdome – but away from the dome he has yet to crack 40 points and perhaps somehow the lowly 49ers can bring the great Drew Brees low. For the Outlaws, the player to watch will be Matt Ryan – since his explosive game against the Panthers in Week 4, he has been good by not great. In addition, he’s playing on a Thursday night which has not typically been a bastion of points for fantasy purposes. The last time Ryan faced the Bucs, he threw for 334 and 2 TDs – can he do better this week? After last weeks surprising loss to the Footballas, you can’t take anything for granted – but ATLiens is looking like the team of destiny right now. Just like the Vols…and we saw how far that got them. We’re still going with ATLiens to win this one, but it might be closer than we all think.

WDESPN Prediction: ATLien Rises

The Footballas vs Orange Nation: When you look up the word overachieve, you should find a picture of Todd’s team – The Footballas – as they definitely outkicked their coverage last week with a surprising win over the ATLiens. Just goes to show – on any given Sunday, any team can win (I’m looking at you bottom barrel teams!). Now this next challenge shouldn’t be that hard, but if there’s one thing we all know – coming down from a massive win like that can really mess with a team and make them complacent. Joel/Orange Nation is coming off a 3 game losing streak, which was preceded by a 3 game winning streak. So will this be the start of a winning streak for the older Owen brother? The player to watch for Joel will be Derek Carr – who just absolutely dominated the Bucs in last Sunday’s game. When you go for 513 yards and 4 touchdowns – all eyes are definitely on you to see if you can keep it up. It’s going to be hard to do against the vaunted Broncos defense – but if he does overcome that hurdle, he would be a legend. For the Footballas, the player to watch will be Big Ben. Since Andy Dalton is on a bye this week, Todd has to be hoping that Big Ben can saddle up once again and keep his teams playoff hopes alive and well. Reports have come out suggesting that Ben could strap it up this weekend, but only time – and pain tolerance will tell. On paper, these are two very evenly matched teams – it’s going to be a shame that one of them definitely has to lose. I think in the end Orange Nation is going to be able to pull out the win and show Todd that he’s a one hit wonder at the top. You do have to wonder who Joel will be rooting for in the Oakland/Denver match up: Derek Carr or Von Miller? Where does his loyalty lie?

WDESPN Prediction: Orange Nation

Texasseans vs Macheteros: There are two teams that are just trying to make it through this season with some very flawed teams. But don’t look now, Phil is in the hunt for a playoff spot with his 3-5 record. Technically, Macheteros isn’t out of it either with his 1-7 records (only 2 games back from 8th place). This is going to be an interesting match up as 2 key cogs in the Texassean machine will be on bye this week (Alshon Jeffery and Kirk Cousins). Which means that Phil will have to turn back to a player that is his player to watch and probably someone he hasn’t had to rely on since the first game of the season – Jameis Winston. In week 1, he lit the world on fire with his 281 yard 4 TD performance against the Falcons. So who does he get the pleasure of facing off again – only at home this time – that same Falcons defense. So literally could not have come at a better time. For Macheteros, the player to watch will be Aaron Rodgers. Even though the Packers offense lost last week, it’s starting to actually come around from a fantasy perspective – with Aaron leading the way by putting up 2 of his largest points performances of the week in the last 2 weeks. Will Aaron be able to continue that trend heading into what should be a shootout game against the Colts? We shall definitely see but somehow this game is going to be close – somehow, someway. But Macheteros will walk with the victory and potentially be one step closer to making it to the 3rd fantasy season of the year.

WDESPN Prediction: Macheteros

Took a week off to recharge the batteries and talk to the bank about the delay in FAAB deposits lately, especially the weeks that Reid is scheduled to receive money. Hopefully we’ve worked out all the kinks and that’s behind us – but before we can completely move on, we must recap the award winners for the past 2 weeks:

WDE Rumble Week 5 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): Orange Nation
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): The Outlaws
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Fear the Neckbeard
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): Orange Nation

WDE Rumble Week 6 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): ATLiens Rises
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): Orange Nation
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Nashville Ninjas
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): Fear the Neckbeard

Now that we are at the mid-season mark for the league…it’s time for the cream to rise to the top. Who will rise and who will fall is the name of the game as the playoffs draw near. Let’s go over some of the top matches this week:

ATLien Rises vs. Bring It!: This fiery rivalry is renewed – just from two very different parts of the winning spectrum. For ATLiens, this just might be their season to win it all once again and taste that rare air of being a 3 time Rumble champion. For Bring It, the ship is sinking and he’s just trying to get us much stuff off as possible. But when these two face off against each other – it’s not so much about what has happened in the past, it’s about kicking the snot out of each other in the present. Now, I would say that the player to watch on Bring It is Tom Brady but someone went and traded him away. So then the real player to watch for Bring It! will be Alex Smith. Alex Smith? Yup – that Alex Smith. He is definitely not known for his high output games…but this week, he’s facing off against the New Orleans Saints and that could lead to a potential shootout (and everyone knows the Saint’s defense isn’t all that tough to beat through the air). Could Alex Smith and PRR shock the world? For his part, Reid hopes that his QB will prevent that shocking from happening as his player to watch is Drew Brees. Now I know what you’re saying ‘How could Drew Brees be a player to watch?’. Well friends, while Drew is amazing at home under the safe lights of the Superdome…have you noticed what his performance is like AWAY from the  Superdome? 20 points vs. the Giants and 18 points vs the Chargers….those aren’t exactly lights out defenses. He has not scored below 30 points at home – but player against the bend but don’t break Kansas City defense AT Arrowhead could be cause for concern for ATLiens. But we all know the way this one is going. Reid keeps rolling along on his way to locking up the number 1 seed in the playoffs and PRR starts his draft strategy for 2017 a little early.

WDESPN Prediction: ATLiens Rises

The Outlaws vs Fear the Neckbeard: This started off as a nice little game between two coaches that had never met each other and were just going to put their best foot forward to make it through the season and get to the playoffs. But then Kyle/FTB went and traded for Tom Brady, so Marques/The Outlaws went and traded for his 1A RB, James White. Now these two bitter foes will face off in a match up that will have Patriot vs Patriot in a battle for supremacy. As of this writing, neither team has their new toys on the squad yet so they will not be taken into account as players to watch. So for FTB, their player to watch will be Brandon Marshall. Going from Ryan Fitzpatrick to Geno Smith should not really be an upgrade – but Fitzmagic ran dry and then the well was destroyed in the last few weeks, so it has to be an upgrade. I think the question that FTB has to be asking themselves is if Geno will have more receptions to Brandon or the Ravens secondary? It might be to close to call. For the Outlaws, the player to watch – and you’re going to have to get up early to do this AND have NFL Network – is Odell Beckham, Jr. It was a rollercoaster with him last week, but in the end he put the Giants and the Outlaws on his back and guided them both to victory against scrappy opponents last week. Now OBJ is in London for the first time against the LA Lambs – will he be able to put on another show against a not so great Rams secondary? England is hoping so, as well as the commish. This one might be a little bit close to call due to the incoming Patriots assistance – but since there seems to be a pattern developing, this is the week that the Outlaws lose and once again go below .500 – because they are truly trying to be a Jeff Fisher team this year.

WDESPN Prediction: Fear the Neckbeard

The Footballas vs. Texasseans: These are two friends of Jonas facing off against each other – that’s about the only similarity these two teams have with each other. They are both on the opposite sides of the winning percentage and one has help coming in the form of Andy Dalton (you don’t hear that to often) and the other is just reveling in the joys of week 1. In that way, these two teams kind of remind me of the current election cycle. The Footballas are the expected winners and just need their team to show and actually get the job done. The Texasseans know they are going to lose but put on a good face anyway and are always living in the glory days of the past (i.e. the Primary/Week 1). But I digress. For the Texasseans, the player to watch will be Golden Tate. With Theo Riddick out last week, he decided to come alive to the tune of 31 points (which almost equals the points he had for the entire season up to last week). Can lightning strike twice? For the Footballas, their player to watch will be CJ Anderson – who has been on a very steady decline since the start of the season in terms of points (he hasn’t scored more than 30 points since the start of the season). With Devante Booker breathing down his neck and a primetime slot on the horizon – could this be the last hurrah for good ole CJ or will he be able to pull a rabbit out of his hat once again and hold off the competition like he did last year with Ronnie Hillman? From our seats, the Footballas should win this one pretty easily. But it wouldn’t surprise me if Phil and his motley crew took down the #1 team in the Smackdown division – he’s prone to overachieving.

WDESPN Prediction: The Footballas

Before we can appreciate the awesomeness that is Week 5 and the first bye week of the year with multiple people out, let’s take a look back at the carnage and glory that was dispatched in week 4:

WDE Rumble Week 4 Award Winners:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Award (Most Points scored): The Footballas
  • Ryan Lochte Award (Most points but lost): Family Owned
  • Simone Manuel Award (Fewest points but won):Bring It!
  • US Olympics Women’s Basketball Award (Largest Margin of victory): Fear the Neckbeard

Week 4 featured the first bye week of the season and it wasn’t so bad, only 2 teams were out of commission. Now 4 teams are on a bye and only 3 of them have multiple players that people care about in the land of fantasy. But with week 5 comes the true nature of the league and how well people have drafted and played the waiver wire over the course of the last few weeks. As the season starts to take shape, some are looking up wondering what it will take to get out of the cellar and some are wondering what unexpected player is going to knock them down from their perch. The competition is getting both fierce for the upper tier players and tougher for the lower tier players – but on any given Sunday the script can flip. Will this be the Sunday where it flips for you?

Clark Kent vs. Texasseans:The man who would be king vs. the man who has given up on this season. This one should be interesting because Phil is known for playing spoiler for people that he has a slight rivalry to. And we all know that the rivalry between these two runs deep – all the way back to their days in Morristown. The player to watch for Mike (Clark Kent) will be Demaryius Thomas. There are days in which he can be a no-brainer WR1 and bring the championship home and there are days when he is a frustrating WR3 and can sink your fantasy hopes and dreams. Sometimes it doesn’t even matter what the level of the opponent is – D.Thomas can easily develop a case of dropped ball-itis. On the other side, the player to watch for the Texasseans will be Alshon Jeffery. With no Kevin White on the scene, it’s going to be all AJ all the time going up against an easily beaten Indy defense. The main challenge will be health and QB – Alshon is not guaranteed to make it through any game healthy and Brian Hoyer is not a QB that’s going to lift any WR to victory on a consistent basis. But hey – he’s better than Cutler, that’s for sure. Honestly, this match up shouldn’t even be all that close. Clark Kent should roll on and keep their undefeated streak alive. I remember the last time Mike went on an impressive undefeated streak….it didn’t result in him winning the championship, and that’s what matters.

WDESPN Prediction: Clark Kent

Bring It vs. TheMistocles: Now at this point, we would normally not be focusing on a 1-3 match up because they are typically featuring two teams that are struggling to get by. But the reason for highlighting this match is because….he’s back! Tom “Terrific” Brady makes his 2017 season debut going up against the hapless Cleveland Browns. There’s a chance that Brady may score more points then all all TheMistocles players combined. In addition, this might be the week that Eddie Lacy and Todd Gurley get off the snide and start making PRR’s team look respectable again. On the other side, you have Maurice and TheMistocles who will do their best to get a piece of that Brady pie by rolling out Chris Hogan, Lagarette Blount and the New England defense. All they are missing to complete the set is Gronk and Brady. At least as Maurice watches the game and watches Brady score, it will be the source of both pain and joy. There’s no need to labor this point any further, Bring It! Is going to rock the world of TheMistocles and PRR’s going to feel dirty about it at the same time. So really, it’s a win-win for all involved (except Maurice….poor poor Maurice).

WDESPN Prediction: BringIt! (how’s he going to sleep when he owes his victory to the man he hates?)

Fear the Neckbeard vs. Family Owned: These two teams are coming into this week off a 200+ point performance in week 4…but two very different results. FTB scored over 200 points last week and came away with the victory over the hapless Mistocles franchise, while Family Owned scored over 200 points and was crushed by the might of the Footballas. One team will be looking to keep the roll going while the other will be looking to regain the momentum they lost last week. For Family Owned, the player to watch will be the Denver defense. Crazy, right? But they are going up against the number 1 player in fantasy right now in Matt Ryan. Everyone had their doubts about Matty Ice last week against Carolina and he blew those doubters out of the water. This week brings the question of is this legit or just a mirage? The Denver defense has not scored less than 30 points since the start of the season and they’ve faced the likes of Newton, Luck, Dalton and Winston in that span…on the other hand, Atlanta has given up the 4th fewest fantasy points to defenses this season. So something has to give. For FTB, the key player to watch will be Julian Edelman. With Brady back in the lineup, will that vault Edelman back up to the PPR monster that he has been in previous seasons? Due to the performance of the backup QBs to start the season, each week Edelman has scored fewer and fewer points. Is a new day upon us with the Brady “Gronk You Tour” about to commence? Yahoo is predicting a 20 point difference in points, but I think this match up will actually be closer than that but you all know it’s going to come down to Monday Night…it just feels like that kind of game. As for our prediction.give us Family Owned to come  out on top and get the family momentum going again.

WDESPN Prediction: Family Owned