Friday, November 28, 2008

Why Did I Bench Brian Westbrook and Donovan McNabb?

I'm mad at myself for doing so, but it's a good idea to reflect on the deicision-making process so that future mistakes might be prevented. Let's look as possible reasons.

1. Overreaction to the Ravens game.

I try hard not to let one game effect my judgement, however the Ravens game was to some extent "the straw that broke the camel's back" for me. I can survive low point games from my QB, but the negative disaster was pretty rough on my psyche. And Reid pulled the guy! He was probably on a short leash against the Cardinals. Sure he threw 4 TDs, but what if he would have thrown two early picks again?

That said, I should have looked at the Cardinals more closely, as passing games have torn them up.

2. The Trent Edwards Matchup.

My backup QB is Trent Edwards. Not a bad player, really. Anyway, while McNabb faced a bad Cardinal secondary (which was made slightly better by the addition of a healthy Adrian Wilson), Edwards faces an even worse San Francisco secondary. Here though I may also be facing some "what have you done for me lately" bias, as Edwards was great last week. Moreover, if you look at Edwards stats he has clearly been vastly inferior to McNabb, even against bad teams. It is looking more and more like an emotional, and not a rational decision.

3. Brian Westbrook's injuries.

I've had Brian Westbrook many times and know to play him even when he is questionable. So why not this time? Arizona is a respectable 8th against the run (another reason to play McNabb, you idiot), and Westbrook has been pretty bad of late. He had not rushed for over 61 yards since week 8 when he blew up for 167 agaisnt the Falcons. He also had not scored a TD since week 8. In past seasons Westbrook's pass-catching ability has put him above almost every other back in the league, but this season he has not had a receiving TD since week 2, and he hasn't gone over 42 yards receiving since week 5. Add in the fact that he would be working this week on short rest on an injured ankle, and he looks fairly unnattractive. And to some extent, his two receiving TDs yesterday were pretty flukey.

4. Better Alternatives?

Here though, we must consider our alternatives. We have (maybe) Steven Jackson, who has missed (basically) 5 weeks with a quad injury. He's reportedly healthy, but he might not be. And even so, he's on a bad Rams team that plays a decent Miami run defense. We also have RBBC members Le'Ron McClain, whom might be alright against a pretty bad Cinci run defense, or Derrick Ward against a lackluster Washington run defense (but Jacobs is probably back) or Pierre Thomas against a stout Tampa defense.

None of those look terribly attractive, except maybe McClain.

Anyway, my ultimate problem was that I failed to perform the following exercise. Imagine that you are forced to bet your life on who will score more fantasy points. McNabb v. Edwards, and Westbrook v. Jackson, etc.

I would almost certainly have taken McNabb and Westbrook. But I didn't. Which means I was not acting rationally this week. I was flustered by the Thursday games, and by recent events.

Oh well, live and learn.

McNabb is a very frustrating fantasy player.


E.S.K. said...

I benched em both as well, in favor of Jones-Drew and Pennington

ERic said...

I would have benched WEstbrook. i too would have Leron Mclain and i would ahve started him since Joe Flacco is suspect at quarterback.

Tough to say about McNabb given what we know now. Edwards was probably safer but here's a question. Is Shaun Hill of SF still available for you? might be time to go outside the box...

Danielle said...

I also benched Westbrook, thats how i found your post, was checking to see if any one else in the entire country did, and am happy to see someone else
did in fact bench the infamous westbrook, I didnt show him the love and in return he didnt show it right back. well that was my playoff seat decision, guess theres always next year. I hate football.