2008 year in review: fantasy's best

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Since we've got some time before fantasy baseball starts up - for which we plan on finally starting our own league that all of you fine readers can join, if you'd like - Matt and I are going to spend a little time recapping the year that was in fantasy football. It was a good year for both of us, I won my title and Matt went to his championship game, and we had a great time writing the blog. I just hope our advice didn't screw anyone over too bad. Thanks for reading.

Here's a look at Yahoo!'s top ten overall scorers for fantasy football in 2008:

1. QB Drew Brees - Saints: 302.66

2. QB Aaron Rodgers - Packers 290.22

3. RB DeAngelo Williams - Panthers 285.60

4. QB Philip Rivers - Chargers 278.76

5. QB Jay Cutler - Broncos 277.04

6. QB Michael Turner - Falcons 272.00

7. QB Kurt Warner - Cardinals 261.12

8. QB Peyton Manning - Colts 254.18

9. QB Matt Cassel - Patriots 244.72

10. QB Donovan McNabb - Eagles 243.34

Few thoughts...

a) Quite obviously, fantasy numbers don't equal real life success. Three of the top five scorers were on non-playoff teams, and Phillip Rivers' Chargers managed just an 8-8 record.

b) The first thing you notice looking at this list is the number of quarterbacks. Nine in the top ten. So why, exactly, do running backs always get drafted first? I may be the supposed 'expert' around here, but honestly, I have no idea. I took Tom Brady with the fifth pick in my draft thinking he'd put up more points than of the available running backs, and had he not been hurt, I probably would have been right. Maybe fantasy football isn't all about tail backs.

c) Aaron Rodgers, Deangelo Williams, Michael Turner, and Matt Cassel. Who woulda thunk it? That unpredictability is part of what makes fantasy football so much fun.

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Why are RBs the top picks? Because they have the most value. Your list has 8 QBs in the top ten. There just is not that much separation from QB to QB. Besides, QBs are more fragile and subject to the vagaries of weather, and you play one QB and frequently 3 or more RBs. Further, in a small league like mine, a QB can be picked up weeekly by choosing the right matchups. Most teams in my league carry one QB and pick up a second when needed. I was able to pick up Cassel, Schaub (who would be in the top 10 barring injury), Thigpen and Garrard whenever I felt like it. Paradoxically, it was my RBs (Portis and Marion Barber) who were hurt at the end of the year. So much for my plan! Things happen.

After writing the above, I checked the numbers. In my 10 team league the top QBs and RBs scored thus:

1 - 322 305
10- 220 221
11- 218 214
20- 182 168

Hmmm! They track a lot closer than I thought. Maybe it's because I have never drafted higher than 7 and the top 1 or 2 QBs are gone. Still, it seems easier to me to pickup QBs than RBs on a given Sunday. The drop off in RBs is faster.

Does anyone have an archive of the end of season points totals for all players?

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