Sunday, August 15, 2010

8/15 Bust of the Day: Tom Brady

QB TOM BRADY, Patriots

Before you flip out and call me a crazy Brady hater (or worse), please read this blog carefully. I'm not predicting Tom Terrific's days as a fantasy force are over. I'm not saying he's washed up or not worth drafting. I'm simply stating my belief that Brady will fail to deliver on the general consensus of expectations for him this year, which is how I define a bust.

But first, the positives: Brady's currently playing for a new contract, as is his top receiver, the always dangerous Randy Moss. Standout slot man Wes Welker is progressing nicely from reconstructive knee surgery. The Pats still don't have a go-to running back, which means plenty of pass attempts. And Brady's more than a year removed from a devastating knee injury of his own.

Now check this out: I'm seeing Brady being touted as a definite-top-5/possibly-top-3/maybe-top-overall QB in many fantasy circles, but a lot of that is still based on memories of his record-breaking, pre-injury 2007 season. Take away that 50-TD anomaly, and he's never thrown for more than 28 scores in a season. Granted, he equaled that number last year and also had his second-most passing yards (4,398) - yet he still finished as the seventh-rated fantasy QB in standard-scoring leagues.

Other QBs have closed the gap on old stalwarts Brady and Peyton Manning - not just new standard-bearer Drew Brees but also young upstarts like Aaron Rodgers, Matt Schaub, Philip Rivers and Tony Romo. Brady still might be a safe fantasy pick, but it depends where you're picking him too, because there are others available who might have more upside or be even safer. Remember, Brady's 33 years old (and so is Moss for that matter) and is going to eventually decline. Nobody wants to spend a first- or second-round pick on him the year that happens.

That's all I'm sayin'.

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