Tag Archives: nfl

Fantasy Football Breakouts and Sleepers

Week 1 Breakouts, Week 2 Sleepers

Every fantasy football owner is always looking for the next move to propel his team to championship status. I will highlight one player from each major position that had a break out game in week 1 and share with you my sleeper’s for week 2.  Here is the Ninja’s breakout players for week 1, and sleepers for week 2.



QB=The breakout QB in week 1 is no other than Washington’s newest celebrity and number two overall draft pick this fall Robert Griffin III (RG3).  RG3 dropped 33 fantasy points this weekend according to Yahoo’s default settings and went into the 40s in leagues that use bonuses over 300 yards. RG3 ended with 320 yards, 2 pass TDs, and 42 rush yards last week against the New Orleans Saints, who did not lose at home last year.

Stevan Ridley

RB= The breakout RB in week 1 goes to Stevan Ridley and the new found rushing attack the Patriots put on display last week in Tennessee.  Stevan Ridley scored 22 points according to Yahoo’s default settings and ended in the thirty’s in leagues that use bonuses when a player rushes over 100 yards. Stevan Ridley ended with 125 rush yards, 1 rush TD, and 2 receptions for 27 yards. Last year Ridley ended the season with 87 rushes and a 5.1 yards/rush average but carried the ball 21 times this Sunday, which has fantasy owners very happy about the future.


WR= The breakout WR in week 1 is the second year player out of Alabama Julio Jones who looked like a veteran receiver on Sunday, shredding the Kansas City secondary all afternoon. Jones ended with 6 catches for 108 yards and 2 Tds this week which earned him 28 points in Yahoo’s default scoring and well into the 30s in leagues that use accelerators over 100rec yards. Jones, like every other Rookie missed OTA’S/Training camp last year due to the NFL lockout and missed out on gaining timing with QB Matt Ryan; it took all the way into Week 9 last year for Julio to find the end zone. It looks like he found that timing and is prime for a big season reeling in 2 Tds Week 1.



QB= The Week 2 sleeper at QB is second year player out of Florida State Christian Ponder. Ponder was 20 for 27 last week, and threw for 270 yards. Ponder did not find the end zone Week 1 as first year head coach Chuck Pagano wanted to reward Adrian Peterson in the Redzone for his dedicated rehab all summer, handing AP two scores on the day. This week, Ponder is going up against the Indianapolis Colts secondary that gave up 293 pass yards/game in 2011, and a whopping 333 yards week 1 to Jay Cutler. Ponder can be a great start week 2.

Isaac Redman

RB= The week 2 sleeper at RB is Isaac Redman of the Pittsburg Steelers. Redman only rushed for 21 yards on 11 carries last week against Denver’s stingy rush defense, and even lost some carries to Jonathon Dwyer down the stretch. This sounds bad, but starting RB Rashard Mendenhall is likely out again this week, and Redman still got more carries than Dwyer Week 1, so it looks like he will receive most of the carries this week against the Jets. The Jets gave up 195 rush yards Week 1 to the Bills and is a great team for  a hungry Redman to bounce back against.

Brandon Lloyd

WR= The Week 2 sleeper at WR that can do damage as a WR3 or WR/RB spot this weekend is Brandon Lloyd of the New England Patriots. Lloyd ended Week 1 with 4 catches for 69 yards which is a double digit day in any PPR leagues. His matchup in Week 2 is the Arizona Cardinals who gave up 254 yards week 1 to a suspect Seattle Seahawks offense ran by rookie QB Russell Wilson. Lloyd also has 3 career TDs against Seattle in 9 games.

 Check back each Thursday for the Ninja’s fantasy breakouts and sleepers

@PenaJT2, @ninjasblog

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‘It is worth the three minute watch’

Check out this video. It is worth the three minute watch. Ray Lewis has had a great career so far and he is a great leader.

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Predictions: Busts and Badasses

ryan kalil makes bold superbowl prediction carolina panthers
As many of you Ninjas may have already seen, Panthers Center Ryan Kalil took out an ad in today’s Charlotte Observer. In this full page ad, Kalil guaranteed Panthers fans a Lombardi Trophy this season. There have been many bold predictions throughout the history of sports, and it remains to be seen where Kalil’s Superbowl prediction will rank. Often times, a prediction will fall flat on it’s face. In some cases though, athletes or coaches can back up a bold prediction with acts of badassery.

The Best:

5. Rasheed Wallace, Detroit Pistons, 2004 Easteren Conference Finals

The prediction: “We will win game 2.”
Success: ‘Sheed had enough power within the locker room to make the prediction work. His teammates backed him up and they went on to beat the Lakers in the NBA finals.

4. Plaxico Burress, New York Giants, 2007 Super Bowl

The prediction: Burress predicted that his 10-6 Giants will win 23-17.
Success: Plaxico caught the game winner in the Super Bowl XLII, helping his team along to a 17-14 victory.

3. Jim Fassel, New York Giants, 2000, Week 12

The prediction: “I am raising the stakes right now. If this is a poker game, I am shoving my chips right in the middle of the table…..Anybody who wants out, can get out. This team is going to the playoffs. Okay? This team is going to the playoffs.”

Success: The Giants, 7-4 at the time of the prediction, ended up making it all the way to the Super Bowl before losing to the Ravens.

2. Mark Messier, New York Rangers, 1994 Stanley Cup Finals

The prediction: Messier promised that his Rangers would beat the New Jersey Devils in game 6. The Rangers were behind 3-2.
Success: This was an intentional move to motivate his team. Messier answered on the first question he was asked the day before game 6, that they were going to win the game. Most importantly, Messier delivered on his prediction with a hat trick. The Rangers won their first title in 54 years, and Messier did this all before predictions were in style.

1. Joe Namath, New York Jets, 1967 Super Bowl

The prediction: “The Guarantee” as many call it, was straight to the point and simple. Joe Namath went down in history when he guaranteed his Jets would beat the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III.
Success: After a victory over the heavily favored Colts, Namath became an instant celebrity, and some speculate that this game and prediction is what brought the AFL and NFL together.

We can’t forget Babe Ruth calling his shot in the list above. Badass predictions are cool, but let’s be honest, we all enjoy a good bust.

The Worst:

5. Vince Young, Philadelphia Eagles, 2011 Preseason

The prediction: Vince Young gave his Eagles a ‘dream team’ label after the the Eagles signed a few highly touted free agents and implemented a new defensive scheme.
Failure: After a 1-3 start, Quarterback Mike Vick explained, “I think the “Dream Team” — that word is dead now. You can’t talk “Dream Team” anymore. Maybe it put pressure on some players, maybe it didn’t.”

4. Sam Cassel, Milwaukee Bucks, April 17th 2002

The prediction: PG Sam Cassel promised that his Bucks would would be the Pistons on the night of April 17th.
Failure: The Bucks did not show up that night, losing by 34. Horrid.

3. Rex Ryan, New York Jets, 2011 Preseason

The prediction: Rex Ryan predicted for the third straight year that his Jets would win the Super Bowl.
Failure: I understand establishing to your team that the Super Bowl is the clear goal at the beginning of the season, but failing on his prediction three years in a row just makes Rex look like a clown.

2. Lon Kruger, Atlanta Hawks, 2002 Preseason

The prediction: The Hawks head coach promised season ticket holders a $125 refund if the Hawks failed to make the playoffs.
Failure: Although Kruger was excited about the team’s attainment of Glenn Robinson, there is no excuse for publicly announcing a refund of any sort. His promise, along with a terrible record, lead to his termination midway through the season.

1. Ryan Leaf, San Diego Chargers, 1998 NFL Draft

The prediction: More like a quote… “I’m looking forward to a 15-year career, a couple of trips to the Super Bowl and a parade through downtown San Diego.”
Failure: With a career passer rating around 50, many consider Leaf the biggest bust in NFL history. The sheer boldness of his statement gives Leaf the top spot in this Ninja’s worst predictions list.

To follow a current prediction in progress, refer to Matt Kemp who mentioned the possibility of a 50-50 season.

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