Tag Archive: evelyn lozada

Johnson, Burress, Moss, and Owens: A Year In Review

December 31, 2012 Randy Neil

2012 was set to be the year of the over-the-hill receiver.

This year in football has been an interesting one to say the least. A majority of the teams that were expecting to shine absolutely flopped, and teams like the Seahawks, Colts, Redskins, and Vikings are headed to the playoffs. Go figure.

One of my favorite sub-stories for the year was the return of 4 seemingly over-the-hill receivers to football. Chad Johnson, Plaxico Burress, Randy Moss, and Terrell Owens all had jobs, or were looking for jobs, at the start of the 2012-13 NFL season. I was planning on reviewing their seasons for comparison in search of the better player, but I didn’t expect things to fall apart as bad as they did.


Let’s go worst to first shall we?

Terrell Owens

T.O. was all set to rejuvenate his career in Seattle this summer after signing at 1-year, $925,000 contract with the Seahawks. Training camp highlights showed Owens demeanor as ‘humble’ and it appeared as though he was getting along well with coach Pete Carroll when they pranked the entire football team.

Sad to say, Owens was released 20 days later after the 3rd pre-season game with the Seahawks. He announced the release via Twitter on August 26th, 2012. Since then, Owens has been listed as a free agent and is scheduled to appear on the Fox show, “Stars in Danger: The High Dive”, where celebrities high-dive into a swimming pool on January 9th. Promising.

Chad Johnson

After his dismal season in New England, the future looked pretty bleak for Mr. Johnson. He landed a deal with the Miami Dolphins for the 2012 season and changed his last name back from Ochocinco to Johnson. A lot of people started to buy into the notion that Chad Johnson was a more humble man. Some even predicted a come-back calibur season for the former Pro-Bowler.

Before the season even started, Johnson was involved in a domestic dispute with his now ex-wife Evelyn Lozada where police report that he head-butted her, prompting me to name my now 3rd place champion fantasy football team, “The Lozada Foreheads.” He was cut immediately after posting bail and has been listed as a free agent ever since. Johnson did a small stint on ESPN a few weeks ago where he told his side of the story and begged for forgiveness. It was sad, but a lot of the analysts commended him for it, which basically means he’s probably going to be an NFL receiver somewhere next year.

Plaxico Burress

In retrospect, Burress should’ve been absolutely elated to leave the New York Jets, except that no other team offered him a roster spot on their team to begin the 2012 season. Plaxico remained out of the spotlight for the first 3 months of the season, while quietly negotiating a contract as a free agent. On November 20, 2012, Plaxico signed a deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers, who were in great need of receivers after losing Crotchery and Brown to injuries.

Up until December 30th, 2012, Burress played in 2 of 5 potential games, being targeted 5 times total. He made one reception for 18 yards in Pittburgh’s loss to the Chargers. In week 17, however, Plaxico was targeted a whopping 3 times, with 2 completions for 24 yards and 1 touchdown. That touchdown marks the longest gap for a touchdown pass between quarterback and receiver. The future doesn’t look great for Burress, who may have one year left in him, but at least he has flown under the radar since his time in jail and truly appears to have righted his wrongs.

Randy Moss

Moss spent the 2011-12 season in retirement, so it was sort of surprising to hear that he had emerged to sign and deal with the playoff-contending San Francisco 49ers.

Moss played in all 16 games this season but was rarely used, averaging around 4 targets per game. Moss’s ‘highlight’ games would either be the 75 yard receiving game against the Giants, or the 1-catch for 47 yards and a touchdown game against the Arizona. All told, Moss accumulated 434 yards receiving and 3 TDs on the season. I’m calling him the winner based on dignity.

So, what did we learn, boys and girls? Well, although I was practically drooling at the frenzy of media stories that were set to emerge this football season, most of these entertaining veterans have now become a bit sad and pathetic. Unlike running backs that have the shortest tenure in football, receivers can sometimes linger around for multiple seasons. Problem is, most of them don’t know when their day in the sun is over, and sometimes, neither to the NFL teams who sign them.

Predictions for the 2013-14 Season

Owens – Has a full transition into acting, where he is considered mediocre at best. Struggling to find acting work, Owens finally lands a gig on some VH1 reality show that exploits his insecurities and shortcomings for ratings.

Johnson – Signs a 1-year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles. 650 yards, 4 TDs.

Burress – Retires a Pittsburgh Steeler, ends up doing commentary work for the local Pittsburgh broadcasts.

Moss (includes 2012-13 post-season) – catches the NFC Championship winning touchdown pass that propels the 49ers to the Superbowl. After losing the Superbowl, Moss immediately begins cursing out his fellow teammates through an abysmal meltdown during the post-game conference. Calls everyone “bitches”, and then returns to his rural roots to continue racing NASCAR trucks.


My Fantasy Team is ‘The Evelyn Lozada Headbutts’

August 14, 2012 Randy Neil

Sometimes I wonder how successful the NFL would be without fantasy football. I don’t ever recall being that enthralled with the spectacle until 2004 when I first started playing the game. There was finally a reason to cheer for players that I would never care about otherwise. There’s something unique about it, in that fantasy baseball feels like a job and is NEVER satisfying, even when you’re winning. Fantasy basketball I have yet to try, but I imagine that it’s on the same level of fantasy golf. Slow, unrewarding, and probably a bit too nerdy for public perception.

Fantasy football, however, is a MAN’s sport. At this point, I think it would be fair to say that ~90% of people in the United States play fantasy football. That seems like a huge exaggeration in some regards, but if we included ‘Pick’Em Leagues’ and simple work leagues and bets, that figure might be an understatement. Everybody does it.

You know who’s really good at it? Pretty much nobody, including yours truly. You can certainly put the research in before the draft, but it’s almost still kind of a crap-shoot. Darren McFadden was a great pick until he sat on your bench the last 8 weeks of the season, right?

But that’s why we play the game, friends. Some notables about this upcoming season:

1) I was really looking forward to the revival tour of Chad Johnson, Terrell Owens, and Randy Moss. I was almost going to publicly make a bet with Adam to wager on who would have the best season. Now that Chad Johnson’s out of the running, the stakes seem a little diminished. Never the less, there are still going to be two super-seasoned veterans (who I believe are both tied for second place in all time touchdowns) trying to revive their careers in the public spotlight. The traditional fellah would tell you to take Randy Moss. He’s playing on a Super Bowl contending team, Alex Smith is throwing to him, and Jim Harbaugh likes to air the ball out.

On the flipside, Matt Flynn will be throwing to Terrell Owens in Seattle. Flynn had an awesome season last year (basically, 1 game), but he definitely raised some eyebrows. Moss has competition in Mario Manningham, Michael Crabtree, and Ted Ginn Jr., where as Owens has absolutely none. I think he’s going to get the ball a lot more. If I had to place my money today…. I think I’m taking Owens.

Also, side note, but Chad Johnson has absolutely destroyed his life and I kind of feel bad for the guy. The Dolphins cut him immediately, his TV show got cancelled, and now he’s probably going to get a divorce from one of the hottest women on the planet. He wasn’t even performing that well on the field. You can say he was arrogant and maybe boasted too much, so now look at him, etc, but every other star receiver who’s doing really well pretty much acts the exact same way. You almost have to build up the ego to survive that much pressure. You don’t, however, need to BloodSport Van Damme a bitch in her head.

2) Call me crazy, but I’m going to draft a QB first…. again. I don’t really understand the logic behind drafting a running back first. Even in systems where QB touchdowns are 4 points and they get 1 point for every 25 yards, you’re still not going to find a more consistent option. At the end of the year, the top 10 quarterbacks always surpass the top 10 running backs in total points accrued. Unless the league nerfs quarterbacks ridiculously, it seems like a no-brainer to me.

3) I tried to implement a two-quarterback system in my league this year and was met with violent protest. It was eerily similar to people rallying against health care reform. I would make a point, backed up with statistics and information to solidify that point, and then people would just angrily shoot it down with belittling comments. If I recall, the biggest argument against a two-quarterback system was “it was stupid.” Well played.

Hear me out, folks. There are two positions in the traditional fantasy league roster that contain overly dominant players in comparison to the field. Quarterbacks and tight-ends. If you had Vernon Davis the past 3 years, you would know that no one is coming close to you in that category. It was almost absurd. For quarterbacks, Drew Brees pretty much ran the table during 2011-12. Sure, other quarterbacks did stellar, but in total yardage and touchdowns, he was a landslide (he totaled nearly 1000 yards more than the next closest QB.)

The two-quarterback system would definitely balance out that dominance. Two above-average quarterbacks would beat out Drew Brees and Colt Mccoy any day (they do, I’ve done the math.) Plus, it would be more fun. You’re back up quarterback would actually become a part of the game rather than waiting to fill your one bye week where he amounts to nothing. More points = more fun.

Alas, it won’t happen this year, but like many great pioneers, it will take some time to make the masses understand.

4) Some of these guys are going to suck, under-perform, or simply get injured. Some of these guys are going to be awesome. I have segregated them for you:

Guys who will suck

Adrian Peterson
Michael Vick
Mike Wallace
Darren Sproles

Guys who will be awesome

LeSean McCoy
Michael Bush
Chris Johnson
A.J. Green
Dez Bryant

Prove me wrong Fantasy Gods!!