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Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Berry: Charles a top-10 back in 2010

By Matthew Berry
ESPN.com

"There's always next year," they say. Well, next year is here. We surveyed ESPN's fantasy staff to find out a bit about what they think is in store for fantasy owners in 2010.

Reality Check

ESPN Fantasy Sports

Your fondest sports wish for 2010 is:
My Lakers repeat. Over the Celtics.

Why will this happen/not happen?
It's all about Kobe. Something happens to him, we're dead.

Any sport, who is your biggest sleeper pick for 2010?
Justin Forsett

Any sport, which player do you fear will let you down, but you feel compelled to keep drafting him anyway? Erik Bedard

Which player has let you down one too many times and is now "dead to you"?
Francisco Liriano

Let's talk Football

Who will be ...

... The first quarterback drafted in fantasy football leagues? Drew Brees
... The first running back? Chris Johnson
... The first wide receiver? Andre Johnson
... The first rookie? C.J. Spiller
... The NFL MVP? Tom Brady
... The fantasy football MVP (most value for draft position)? Justin Forsett
... Fantasy football's leading scorer? Drew Brees

The Name Game ...
Which player would you rather draft in 2010?

Frank Gore or Ray Rice? Ray Rice
Terrell Owens or LaDainian Tomlinson? LT
DeSean Jackson or Brandon Marshall? Brandon Marshall
Vernon Davis or Antonio Gates? Antonio Gates
Jay Cutler or Kyle Orton? Kyle Orton
Fred Jackson or Jonathan Stewart? Jonathan Stewart.
Knowshon Moreno or Beanie Wells? Knowshon Moreno.
Shonn Greene or LeSean McCoy? LeSean McCoy.
Miles Austin or Roddy White? Miles Austin.
Steve Smith or Steve Smith? Carolina

Playing with Numbers:
Predict the 2010 stat.

Tom Brady's passing touchdowns: 33
Michael Vick's total touchdowns: 2
Adrian Peterson's total yards: 1,850
Chris Johnson's total yards: 2,100
Terrell Owens touchdowns: 4
Brett Favre games played: 12.
Kurt Warner games played: 14.
Matt Forte's average draft position: 5th round

Play Ball!

Who will be ...

... The second player taken in fantasy leagues? Hanley Ramirez
... The first starting pitcher? Tim Lincecum
... The first closer? Someone way too early for me to even care who it is.
... The second catcher? Victor Martinez
... The AL MVP? Alex Rodriguez
... The NL MVP? Albert Pujols.
... The AL Cy Young? Felix Hernandez
... The NL Cy Young? Tim Lincecum
... The AL Rookie of the Year? Scott Sizemore
... The NL Rookie of the Year? Stephen Strasburg
... The fantasy baseball MVP (most value for draft position)? Erik Bedard. What the hell, it's not like he doesn't owe me.
... The highest-rated player on Player Rater? Hanley Ramirez.

The Name Game ...
Which player would you rather draft in 2010?

Hanley Ramirez or Alex Rodriguez? Hanley Ramirez
Tim Lincecum or Zack Greinke? Tim Lincecum
Roy Halladay or Chris Carpenter? Roy Halladay
Ryan Braun or Matt Kemp? Matt Kemp
Yovani Gallardo or Josh Johnson? Yovani Gallardo.
Prince Fielder or Ryan Howard? Ryan Howard
Adam Lind or Josh Hamilton? Josh Hamilton
Aaron Hill or Ben Zobrist? Aaron Hill.
Evan Longoria or Mark Teixeira? Evan Longoria
Mariano Rivera or Jonathan Broxton? Mariano Rivera

Playing with Numbers:
Predict the 2010 stat.

Roy Halladay wins: 16
Cliff Lee wins: 15.
Mark Reynolds home runs and batting average: 26 and .258
Joe Mauer's batting average and home runs: .340 and 15
Chone Figgins and Ichiro Suzuki's stolen bases: 50 and 33.
Matt Capps saves: 21.
Javier Vazquez wins, ERA and WHIP: 14, 4.15, 1.15
Stephen Strasburg's wins, ERA and WHIP: 9, 3.90, 1.30
Alfonso Soriano's average draft position: 6th round.

Mad Gabs

Fill in the blanks to formulate 10 predictions for 2010. Do not limit yourself to football or baseball

In 2010,Donovan McNabb will pass for his career high in yards and touchdowns.
There is no way that Josh Hamilton will be that bad again.
Nyjer Morgan will be this year's Chone Figgins.
If Cleveland does not win the NBA title then LeBron is gone.
• Tiger Woods will be the next big sports star to be on "Oprah."
There will be 10 players that are discovered to have used PEDs. ...
... but only 5 players that are currently playing.
Matthew Berry will continue to root for the Redskins despite no logical reason or hope.
This is the year that Brett Favre finally gets some bad press.
2010 will forever be remembered as the year Fantasy Sports became fully, 100 percent mainstream.

Have we missed anything?

What question do you wish you had been asked on this survey?
Matthew, you were super high on Jamaal Charles this year, even as way back as Week 3, recommending him as a pick-up even before Larry Johnson lost his job. No question, just wanted to let you bask in that glory for a bit. Oh, OK, is he a top 10 running back next year?

And the answer is?
Yes. Obviously, I'm a believer.

What question are you glad you weren't asked?
Yeah, before you get all back-patty with yourself, remember that whole start Arian Foster and Chris Jennings in Week 15 call? What the hell was that? Will you be making a call as bad as that one in the future?

Sucker! Now you have to answer.
More than once, my friend. More than once.