There are a lot of big fantasy questions after just three weeks this year, and there are the annual surprises. Usually, after Week Three, quick-trigger owners start making decisions they regret by Week Eight, and the injury bug starts to hit teams harder.
To start 2009, there are a lot of quarterbacks that are raising eyebrows in the NFL, and some that are disappointing. There are a some that are falling off fantasy rosters, and some that are worth picking up, all moves that are clearly symptoms of widespread fantasy panic.
Slow your roll, owners.
Let's take a quick look at the NFL's quarterback situations and consider their play after three weeks. Some owners might be jumping ship too early, and some might be selling too soon.
Chicago: Jay Cutler
Ah, the flavor of the week. How many fantasy owners lost most of their finger nails watching the first week in Green Bay, only to feel equally high after his last two performances against Pittsburgh and Seattle? If his departure from Denver didn't make Cutler a polarizing figure, his play in Chicago has.
Cutler has spread the wealth better than expected in Chicago; his six touchdown passes have gone to four different players. The issue, though, is that he's thrown passes to five opposing players as well.
It's easy to get swept up in the emotion of the end results of the games, but there's still plenty of concern for fantasy owners of Cutler. He's been sacked six times and thrown five interceptions in three games, and the Bears haven't been able to establish a running game behind an underwhelming offensive line. If you're excited about Cutler, or considering a trade for him...
Slow Your Roll!
Arizona: Kurt Warner
Warner just got wrecked on Sunday night by a Colts defense that couldn't stop anything against Miami just six days before. Dwight Freeney was all over Warner, who took his share of sacks and hits and failed to keep the Cardinals in the game.
As much as haters might want to get excited about Matt Leinart's two completions in the last 28 seconds, Warner's going to stay the guy in Arizona. That doesn't mean he should stay your fantasy quarterback, though. Sure he's got the weapons, but Warner needs to have time to get Larry Fitzgerald, Anquan Boldin or Steve Breaston the ball.
Until the Cardinals get a running game, Warner's going to have issues against the rush. Through three weeks, Warner's averaging under 200 yards per week, has only three touchdowns to two interceptions, and his top target is Tim Hightower. If you're a fantasy owner considering a trade of Warner, I wouldn't stop you.
Don't Slow Your Roll!
Minnesota: Brett Favre
Talk about emotion! Turn on ESPN and all you see is Favre's happy-chuck miracle to beat the 49ers on Sunday. He's back to being the best thing since sliced bread, he's back to the Favre of the 1990s. Where's Cramer when someone's yelling "Buy! Buy! Buy!"
OK. Deep breath. Count to four...
Yes, Favre threw for over 300 yards on Sunday. Let's put that figure into the context that, after three games, he now has 566 total passing yards. Yes, he isn't making mistakes and throwing dumb interceptions, and yes, the play that ended the win against San Francisco was amazing.
But let's not forget Adrian Peterson is still in Minnesota.
San Francisco loaded up to stop the best running back in football, and Mike Singletary's game plan was to make Favre beat them. He did, but it took 60 minutes for him to do so. The Vikings will continue to be a run-first, run-second and run-third team that will ask Favre to give them a few third downs and an occasional miracle the rest of the year. If you're getting all hot and bothered over Favre's game on Sunday...
Slow Your Roll!
Baltimore: Joe Flacco
After three weeks, you would probably figure that the numbers Flacco has put up would have been Warner's. Last year's surprise rookie, lauded for being the dreaded "game manager" has become a threat and legit fantasy option.
He's averaging 280 yards per week, has six touchdowns to two interceptions, and his mobility has helped him avoid more than just three sacks. Also a stark contrast to the Cardinals, it's been the Ravens' fabulous running game that's made Flacco's life easier this year.
If you're a fantasy owner with issues at quarterback, I would have no problem making a trade for Flacco. He's worthy of getting the starting slot, and has emerged as a top ten fantasy quarterback.
Don't Slow Your Roll!