Sunday, September 6, 2009

Three teams I'm trying to avoid

Call me crazy, but an NFL team firing its offensive coordinator less than two weeks before the start of the regular season usually isn't a formula for offensive excellence. That's why I'm trying to avoid most players from these three franchises:


Of all three of these revamped/reworked/rebuilt offenses I'm talking about, the Chiefs were perhaps the most intriguing. Even though now-departed Chan Gailey was a holdover from the previous (unsuccessful) coaching regime, new K.C. head man Todd Haley is the mastermind behind the Cardinals' electrifying offense from a year ago. The firing of Gailey might not make a huge difference, but there were already warning signs about this offense: the poor offensive line play of the past few years, the decline of Larry Johnson and his various issues, the departure of Tony Gonzalez and the preseason injury suffered by new QB Matt Cassel. The combination of all red flags makes K.C.'s playmakers a little less desirable than they seemed during the offseason. WR Dwayne Bowe and Cassel should probably drop out of the preseason top 10 at their respective positions, and I don't trust LJ as anything more than a No. 3 RB at best. Still like Jamaal Charles as a deep sleeper though.


The firing of OC Jeff Jagodzinski kind of came out of left field. Remember when the guy was a big NFL head coaching prospect? Well whatever, I guess being faced with the prospect of Byron Leftwich or Luke McCown as his starting QB, he was probably set up to fail anyway. McCown was traded to Jacksonville over the weekend, and Leftwich is officially the Bucs' Week 1 starter now, which shouldn't excite you much. It doesn't bode well for Antonio Bryant or Kellen Winslow either, so bump them down a peg from wherever they would be with a better QB at the helm. The Bucs do have a promising offensive line and should be able to to run the ball; the problem is they have three decent RBs to share the load, which means you have to be a bit skeptical of Derrick Ward, Earnest Graham and Cadillac Williams until we see their roles.


Buffalo's Turk Schonert is another assistant coach who never even got to start the season in his new position. He's blasting head coach Dick Jauron because the offensive playcalling "wasn't simple enough." A little imagination might not hurt after the Bills have been so ineffective on offense the past few years. Terrell Owens certainly livens things up a bit, but I'm proceeding with caution and treating him like a No. 2 fantasy receiver. Trent Edwards is no Tony Romo (or Donovan McNabb or Jeff Garcia) at this point and has a long way to go before he's anything more than a low-end fantasy backup. Lee Evans is tantalizing as always but seems perpetually bound to disappoint no matter what you expect out of him. And it's tough to take a chance on either Marshawn Lynch or Fred Jackson when you know there will be a major shakeup in their roles once Lynch serves his season-opening four-game suspension.

No comments: