Chat with KC Joyner
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN Insider KC Joyner, will be here to answer your NFL questions.
Joyner, aka The Football Scientist, uses game film to track, tabulate and analyze nearly every measurable statistic in an NFL game. He is a regular Insider contributor and has his own website at thefootballscientist.com.
Send your questions now and join KC Thursday at 4 p.m. ET!
KC Joyner (4:01 PM)
Good afternoon! Quick TFS news in that this year's fantasy football draft guide is now available! Check out www.thefootballscientist.com for more information. Now let's talk some football!
Dickybuzz (Bartlett, IL)
How good or bad are the Vikings wide receivers? Where do I purchase your rankings on line? I am an old timer who realizes that metrics must be part of a reasonable persons analysis.
KC Joyner (4:02 PM)
Bernard Berrian was the best high-volume (i.e. lots of attempts) vertical WR in the NFL last year. The only issue I have with the Vikes is that they seem to be trying to bench Bobby Wade when they don't have anyone else to match his skill set.
This is the 1st year in a while I'm actually excited for the Raiders. My question is about about the offense, specifically McFadden and Miller, are they going to be big enough weapons for the offense to actually be respectable? Also, do the metrics agree with the basic stats that show Russell's improvement down the stretch, or should I start rooting for Garcia now?
KC Joyner (4:04 PM)
The Raiders O line graded out fairly well with the obvious exception of left tackle. Regarding Russell, I recently did a study for ESPN The Magazine showing that Russell was better than Flacco or Ryan down the stretch last year. No reason to pull for Garcia when Russell is the present and future.
I just heard that Mike Vick is signing with Buffalo today
KC Joyner (4:05 PM)
Based on a Twitter tweet from Adam Schefter I saw, Vick did not sign with Buffalo. Last report from Adam is that Vick will pen a deal with someone soon.
Zach (New York, NY)
Why do NFL teams line their best corner against the flanker, wouldn't it make more sense as a defense to line your best up against their best.
KC Joyner (4:05 PM)
The flanker is usually on the right hand side of the formation and is therefore the first read for most quarterbacks.
Do you think the No-Huddle Bills strategy is a good one? Makes up for shortcomings regarding the OL and could tire out some defenses.
KC Joyner (4:06 PM)
If it will get their offense to be more aggressive, I'm all for it. If memory serves me correct, they had the 2nd fewest vertical passes in the league last year and it's hard to win when you can't throw deep.
Eli Manning (Archie's House)
Everybody has been talking about how I will struggle without Plaxico Burress. I think I can put up the same numbers as last year (3200 yds, 21 tds-10 ints). KC, do I have what it takes to finish the year with better stats, worse stats, or the same?
KC Joyner (4:07 PM)
Eli, you had issues throwing vertical even with Plaxico. A study I did for ESPN The Magazine shows that your vertical totals the past three years are abysmal. You'll do just as well without Plaxico as you did with him.
Joe (Orange County, CA)
Is Ahmad Bradshaw going to be this years Derrick Ward, or are Andre Brown and Danny Ware going to share the backup role with Bradshaw?
KC Joyner (4:08 PM)
One of the things I tracked in my draft guide is how well a RB did when he had good blocking. Bradshaw had a tremendously high number in this area, so I'm expecting him to do quite well in this area.
If I'm looking to strike gold in a keeper FF league which of these backups seems most likely to take over for good some point this season: Rice (Bal), Charles (KC), Harrison (CLE)? Anyone else off the radar?
KC Joyner (4:09 PM)
I'd probably go Charles in that one. Rice looks like a #3 in Baltimore and Charles looks more like a
Chad OCHOCINCO (Twitter Cafe)
Everybody is doubting me, but with Carson back, what kind of numbers do you expect me to put up? Do I have a chance for double-digit touchdowns?
KC Joyner (4:10 PM)
Your history is that the Bengals throw to you whenever you have a favorable matchup. You have six of those this year and you'll probably put up a TD or two in most of them. Add in a couple of TDs in the other games and you've got a pretty good shot at double-digit TDs.
Who should start at QB for the Vikings and why?
KC Joyner (4:11 PM)
The benefit of Rosenfels is that he is good at vertical passing. Jackson could be just as good in that area, so I'd go with Jackson.
Whats with the Vince Young hate from everybody? People saying he is a bust are complete idiots. 1st yr ROY! 2ND yr Playoffs! 3rd yr hurt! 4TH yr bust? Dont get the logic.
KC Joyner (4:14 PM)
That's how it goes in this league. When a young player shows some promise, the jump is immediately made to thinking he is a great player (and not just a good young player who has some developing to do). I think Vince Young still has a strong future in the NFL.
Ryan (San Diego)
Have you reviewed enough Chargers tape to stick by them as your pick to rep the AFC?
KC Joyner (4:15 PM)
Their O line run blocking totals were great and Vincent Jackson's numbers were superb. Add that to Rivers being a top-flight QB (yes, I did just say that) and their O is in fine shape. The CBs fared well enough in coverage and if Merriman is back at close to full strength, the pass rush should be improved. All they need is help in the deep secondary. I still have Pitt as my top AFC team but I see them playing SD in the championship game.
Do you consider Jamal Chalres as a solid #2 or 3 with upside?
KC Joyner (4:18 PM)
I assume you mean from a fantasy perspective. It all depends on if Charles gets enough touches. If the Chiefs are going to lean on LJ all the time, Charles may only get 100 touches and that won't be enough to make him a viable fantasy RB. If they are going to take some of the load off of LJ, Charles gets 150. The former is the way it looks at the moment, although the preseason could change my mind to the latter.
I am in a very QB/WR friendly keeper league. I kept Chris Johnson, Kevin Smith, and Aaron Rodgers as 8th, 9th, and 10th rounders. Should I have kept Wes Welker instead of one of those guys?
KC Joyner (4:20 PM)
Johnson and Rodgers are no-brainer keepers over Welker. As far as Smith over Welker, Smith is a top 20 RB and Welker a top 10-15 WR. Depends on who else you have at WR but Welker's numbers will probably be easier to replace than Smith's so I think you made a good move.
King Kevin (Austin TX)
How amped should Mendenhall be tonight to show his stuff while Parker is nursing a sore back?
KC Joyner (4:21 PM)
I hope he's more amped than he was last year. There were times when I wasn't sure he wanted to be in the NFL. I hope he tears it up tonight and shows just how much he wants that starting job.
Yogi (Seattle WA)
Off the top of your head, who do you think will be the top 3-4 DB's in fantasy football this season? I am looking for DB's that will get the most tackles.
KC Joyner (4:23 PM)
According to the targeting numbers from my metrics section in the back of ESPN's Fantasy Football mag, Charles Tillman was the most targeted CB last year. Targets equal tackle opportunities so I'd go with him as a top pick.
I've been hearing a lot about Pierre Thomas lately. What kind of role is he going to have in NO? Fantasy-wise is he the Saint RB to own?
KC Joyner (4:24 PM)
Thomas had great numbers when he had good blocking, so much so that I have him as my #21 RB in the draft guide.
Will Stallworth still be able to have a successful career after his suspension?
KC Joyner (4:25 PM)
Did he have a successful career before it? I'm just glad the NFL did the right thing here.
Steve (Tobacco Road)
There was a report about Chris Johnson being compared to Tomlinson. Do the metrics support this at all? He sure looked good against the Ravens.
KC Joyner (4:26 PM)
Johnson smoked LT in YPA when he had good blocking, so I'm absolutely convinced he is a better back than LT.
C-Unit (Los Angeles)
Better IDP player this year: Mario Williams, Jared Allen, or Terrell Suggs?
KC Joyner (4:27 PM)
Suggs. The first two are going to post more sacks than Suggs (although Suggs should be in the double-digit range there this year) but Suggs is more of an impact against the run.
KC, Hey, which WR in NY is going to step up and be a solid #3 WR (Smith, Manningham, Hicks, Hixon, Hagan or Moss)? Or will this be a WR by committee approach?
KC Joyner (4:28 PM)
My guess is WRBC. They all do some things well but only Smith has shown that he is consistent enough to land that spot.
KC, you are incorrect about Ray Rice. He is there current starter, not third string.
KC Joyner (4:29 PM)
I'm going based on the latest depth charts I saw. Even if he is technically listed as the starter, Baltimore is going to split carries among three RBs, so he's at best a 1a.
Matty Ice (Georgia Dome)
When it comes to fantasy leagues, can I be considered a top 5 pick?
KC Joyner (4:29 PM)
Not quite. You just don't pass the ball enough to be drafted that high.
Zac (Bay Area)
CashTree...what a joke. Anyways, Run DMC has a crowded backfield w/ Fargie and Bush. What are your expectations from the above?
KC Joyner (4:31 PM)
CashTree, very funny! The Raiders backfield will be one to watch this preseason. I expect that DMC will end up being the featured back but will still split with one of the other two. Bush could take the secondary role from Fargas if he shows that the end of last season wasn't a fluke.
Zach (New York, NY)
What do you make out of Eric Winston's low win percentage on POA blocks and the high number of yards gained behind him? Why do many pundits consider him an elite RT?
KC Joyner (4:32 PM)
Because they focus on pass blocking. Winston isn't a terrible RT by any stretch, he just isn't one of the best out there.
KC, I have Brees and Shaub on my fantasy roster. Another league member wants to trade for shaub, and I'm considering doing it for Bowe or Colston. Would I be better off diversifying, and going for Bowe, even though I think Colston will have a better year?
KC Joyner (4:33 PM)
Go for Colston. I like Bowe but he had poor vertical totals last year. Since his QB was in that same boat, it could be an issue this year. Colston and Brees don't have that issue and if Colston is healthy, he'll see just as many passes as Bowe.
Big Ben (Pittsburgh PA)
Do you think most fantasy football leagues should give start giving QBs points for winning? Its a highly discusses stat and would add another element into guaging fantasy QBs!
KC Joyner (4:35 PM)
That's an interesting bonus point discussion. Might be worth an addition to a league to see how it goes and if it should be balanced with something else (i.e. maybe a "team" roster slot where you have to pick which team is going to win that week).
Falcon Fan (AFMB)
Will Michael Turner be the best back in the league this year?
KC Joyner (4:36 PM)
I've got him high on my draft list but he's not the top RB (and AP isn't the only RB in front of him).
Al (Wausau, WI)
KC, do you think Adrian Peterson will get as many carries as he did last year (which I understand was a high number)? How many carries do you think Chester Taylor will get in 2009 for the Vikings?
KC Joyner (4:37 PM)
I'd estimate Taylor see the ball about 100-125 times, maybe 150 if the Vikes do well and can rest AP in some games.
I love your work but I am going to disagree with you on Winston. And I'm not the only one. The Sporting news, Pete Prisco, and Fox Sports all had him as the best RT or at least pro-bowl worthy. Matt Williamson called him one of the best young tackles in the game; and Paul Kuharsky, just last hour, differed with you take. You might want to rethink your criteria.
KC Joyner (4:38 PM)
Look, I mean no offense to anyone else who grades O linemen, but I'm the only one out here who is actually metricizing their performance. We all have scouting eyes, and the opinions those scouting eyes give all have value, but to my thinking a combined metric eye/scouting eye review beats a pure scouting eye review.
Zach (NEw York, NY)
See, KC, I wasn't kidding, there is a bizarre man crush by the media on Eric Winston? Do they love guys who get beat by Jevon Kearse on every play!?
KC Joyner (4:39 PM)
And I'm not even bashing the guy quite as bad as Zach!
Good Day KC, Do you think going WR/WR in a very high performance league might be a good strategy. I am seeing a low crop of Elite WRS this year but I am not sure I want to draft AJ or Fitz in the top 7. I just got your draft guide and it rocks. I will be using it to beat you in the chat league.
KC Joyner (4:42 PM)
Hello KMAC! I like the WR/WR idea if you can snag two of the elites. The QB position won't have a lot of variance between positions 2-10 after Brees and there are a lot of quality RBs to be had. Thanks for the good words on the draft guide! And as far as a chat league goes, I'll be setting up the leagues next week and will call for people to join the league in next week's chat.
This is what PK said:Jay (Dallas)What are your thoughts on Eric Winston. I watch a lot of Texans game and think he is a top five RT, but KC Joyner said he has very poor metrics.Paul Kuharsky (3:54 PM)He looks good to me and I know the Texans love him. Heck, he got a second contract while all these other guys are still waiting.
KC Joyner (4:43 PM)
I need to point out that I didn't say Winston is a terrible RT. He didn't fare that well in POA win rate and had some issues in pass blocking, but my scouting eye says he should get better. Maybe the best way to put this is that Winston has plenty of potential but I'm willing to call it potential instead of saying he's already achieved dominant RT status.
I also enjoy reading your material, but often disagree empatically with your so called "metrics". Weren't you the guy who thought Roy Williams was the greatest safety ever.
KC Joyner (4:44 PM)
You definitely have me confused with someone else. I was driving the "Roy Williams is horribly overrated" wagon coach.
KC Joyner (4:45 PM)
Unless you mean Roy Williams the WR in Detroit in 2006, in which case I'd point out that I have noted it was Mike Martz kicking him in the tail that made all of the difference there. He's not been the same since and 2009 will be no different.
Corey "Squirt" Ferris (VA )
What would you think if the NFL had it's Probowl game to start the Preseason? Wouldn't it be fun to see last year's probowlers starting the first game of the preseason?
KC Joyner (4:47 PM)
Yeah, but it sure would stink when one of them got hurt. And that would be rewarding last year's players with a trip in the next season. I like the current set up but I would suggest one change - make it an international game. The players would get a kick out of it and you know the rest of world would get more excited about seeing the best players than the folks in Hawaii do.
Mock Draft Fan (Minneapolis)
At 9 do you take Fitz/Johnson or Slaton/Portis/Gore? QB's also get 6 points per TD and Manning may be there?
KC Joyner (4:48 PM)
If Johnson or Slaton are available at 9, I'd take them.
You know what would be great. Sit 10 scouts/analysts in a room and have them all watch game tape of a player and see how each has a differing opinion on what they just watched. It all in the eye of the beholder.
KC Joyner (4:50 PM)
It all depends on what each scout is looking for. For example, a scout who used to play O line might be looking more for run blocking technique out of a blocker, whereas a scout with a passing background might lean more on how the player protects the passer.
Jeff (NY, NY)
What do you think about the Jets secondary this year?
KC Joyner (4:51 PM)
It all boils down to Lito. If he can be a ballhawk and make some picks without giving up big plays (something he's not been able to do the past couple of years), they will be in good shape. If Lito is a coverage liability, it will come down to Dwight Lowery. I think NY would be fine with Lowery back there.
Kevin the Cupcake (TX)
I am convinced that Devin Hester is going to get 80 catches for 1100 yds and about 7 TDs? Why am I in the minority? If he can master the short routes he will be be unguardable with defenses also worried about Forte.
KC Joyner (4:52 PM)
The reason some are down on Hester is that, at times, he seemed down on himself last year. I don't think he enjoys playing wideout the way he enjoyed returning kicks. If he starts to get better acclimated to the position and shows some enthusiasm, I'd be inclined to agree with a significant increase in his totals.
President OBAMA (White House)
Iam playing Madden 10 right now, if I choose the wild cat; should I run it with Pat White or throw it to Fasono??? Because the Dolphins have no good reviver...
KC Joyner (4:53 PM)
You mean to tell me that Greg Camarillo and Davone Bess don't have good numbers? That's not a facetious comment - they both posted solid metrics and should be good at catching possession passes in that game.
Jason J (Oviedo, FL)
KC - What up!! Hey man what's your thoughts on Orton this year? Is he a sleeper or not even someone to consider?
KC Joyner (4:55 PM)
What up JJ (or should I say JR?). My draft guide comment on Orton "Great #2 who has great spot starter potential".
With the addition of Dom Capers in Green Bay. How much can they improve defensively moving to the 3-4?
KC Joyner (4:57 PM)
I don't think they have the right personnel to run the 3-4, but their personnel are so good generally speaking that I'm now of the mindset it might not be the disaster everyone (including me) has been saying it will be.
Props to your scouting eye for identifying Sean Considine as an ascending talent a couple of years ago. He was derailed by a shoulder injury and Quinton Mikell's all-pro play; but I've read glowing reviews all-offseason. Pat Kirwin has an article on nfl.com right now about how excited the Jags players are to have him on the team.
KC Joyner (4:58 PM)
Considine has plenty of talent and I think he'll be noticed in 2009.
George (Manchester, England)
What is going to be worse - Denver's ability to stop the run or their ability to get to the QB? Go easy, I am a Broncos fan.
KC Joyner (4:59 PM)
The run. They've still got Elvis Dumervil and if they use him properly (i.e. stop trying to make a full-time starter out of him and let him be the Fred Dean of this generation), he's capable of wreaking havoc against just about any LT.
If you could only have 1 RB, would you rather have DeAngelo Williams or Michael Turner? Not just for this season but for their careers?
KC Joyner (5:02 PM)
I believe Williams is younger, so I'd go with him on that alone. Well, it's been fun but Mrs. Scientist is almost done putting together another wonderful meal (have to get in brownie points as often as possible), so I've got to run. I hope to see everyone here next week (don't forget, the chat fantasy football league invitation will go out then!)