Why I’m sticking with Sam Bradford

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I was graciously invited to be part of a 12-man league this year, and I graciously accepted the invite.  It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to play in a fantasy football league. When you’re getting a Master’s, you just don’t have the time it takes to play competitively in a fantasy league without getting made fun of. I ended up picking up Sam later in the draft this year because I think he is going to have a solid year, despite a slow start in his game yesterday.

Here are a few of my thoughts on why I’m holding on to Sam Bradford and why I think he is going have a big year and rack up those fantasy points.

  • Chip Kelly’s offense has a better chance of protecting Sam Bradford than the Rams ever did.
  • Despite Sam Bradford’s slow 1st half, he threw for 336 yards and 2 touchdowns (1 not counting)
  • He looked really comfortable for his first regular season game in 2 years
  • He was able to rally the second half against a fired up Atlanta defense (not last year’s defense)
  • The Eagles’ strength of schedule is ranked 23rd having a record of 121-134-1 (.475)

There is always a chance of him getting injured, as is true for any pro player; just ask fantasy players that picked up Dez Bryant and T.Y. Hilton. But I think Sam Bradford has as big a chance of having a great year as any.

I’ll end with this. I bet I am much happier than the person I beat this week, with Sam Bradford on my team while he has Peyton Manning on his.

Written by:  Matt Williams, CEO

MLS Weekend Matchups

Soccer Matchups

 

Friday, September 11

New York Red Bulls vs. Chicago Fire

The Red Bulls continue their march towards the top spot in the Eastern conference with wins in four of their last six matches. They should handle the lowly Chicago Fire with ease at home.

Winner: New York Red Bulls

Confidence Rating: 90%

 

Saturday, September 12

Philadelphia Union vs. Columbus Crew SC

The Union’s shock win at San Jose last week gives them a much-needed confidence boost as they host the Crew. However, Columbus’ high-octane attack should have league-leading goal scorer Kei Kamara back, making them the favorites. But be cautious of the Union.

Winner: Columbus Crew SC

Confidence Rating: 60%

Houston Dynamo vs. Real Salt Lake

Both teams are having dismal seasons so far and both enter with just two wins in their last six matches. We give the slight edge to the Dynamo being at home.

Winner: Houston Dynamo

Confidence Rating: 55%

FC Dallas vs. New York City FC

Dallas has won back-to-back matches entering their matchup with NYCFC. They should have Fabian Castillo and Tesho Akindele back in the fold making them the clear favorites at home against the struggling expansion team.

Winner: FC Dallas

Confidence Rating: 75%

Colorado Rapids vs. DC United

Eastern Conference leading DC United travel to Colorado to take on the Rapids and should win easily against the struggling Rapids. The pressure will be on DC as the Red Bulls are just lurking two points behind in the standings. Expect them to come out trying to prove a point.

Winner: DC United

Confidence Rating: 80%

LA Galaxy vs. Montreal Impact

Despite Didier Drogba’s hat trick in his first-ever MLS start, expect the defending MLS Cup champion LA Galaxy to roll over the Impact at home. The star-studded Galaxy boasts an incredible attacking lineup which is nearly unbeatable at the StubHub Center.

Winner: LA Galaxy

Confidence Rating: 85%

San Jose Earthquakes vs. Seattle Sounders

The Quakes had their four-match win streak snapped last week, while the Sounders are getting all of the star players back from injury. We expect Seattle to go to San Jose and come out victorious with Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins up to their old tricks once again.

Winner: Seattle Sounders

Confidence Rating: 75%

 

Sunday, September 13

Toronto FC vs. New England Revolution

Perhaps the most intriguing matchup of the week will take place in Toronto when TFC hosts the Revs. This one is extremely tough to predict as both sides have tons of talent. However, with Sebastian Giovinco still an injury doubt, we have to lean towards the Revs.

Winner: New England Revolution

Confidence Rating: 51%

Orlando City vs. Sporting Kansas City

It’s been a terrible run of form lately for Orlando with just one win in their last eight matches. SKC hasn’t been much better as they’re currently riding a three-match losing streak of their own. Sporting boasts more talent and experience. We believe they’ll pull off the road win and get back on track.

Winner: Sporting Kansas City

Confidence Rating: 60%

 

Written by Rob Usry, Easy Streak Contributor

@RobUsry

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Knowledge is Power – MLB

baseball-field-828713_1920For Easy Streak’s contests, some good fortune on your side can go a long way, but knowledge is power when it comes to selecting winners.

Looking specifically at the MLB contests, there are several components that will factor into some good decision making, but one of the most important things to have knowledge about are the probable starting pitchers for each team. Starting pitchers can be considered the tone setters for their team. So if a starting pitcher is in a more favorable spot than his counterpart, then there should be a greater chance for his team to be victorious.

Check if a pitcher is in any extreme type of form in his most recent starts, whether it be good or bad. Take note of how he’s fared in the past against not only the team that he is opposing, but also against the specific players that may be in the opposing starting lineup to see if he dominates any players or gets dominated by any. Also, inspect his in-season and career splits for whatever the situation is, whether it is at home or on the road, and also splits vs. lefty/righty if the opposition’s offense is particularly heavy in either type of handedness. From all that collected information, you should be able to form solid opinions on your way to selecting winners.

Based on this, here are a couple of freebie picks for the Baseball Weekend on Easy Streak:

SLEEPER PICK (9/11/15):

Los Angeles Angels

(Jered Weaver) vs. Houston Astros (Dallas Keuchel) – Weaver pitched a shutout the last time vs. the Astros; Keuchel is much worse on the road than home (4-6 with 3.35 ERA).

STRONG PLAY (9/12/15):

Miami Marlins

(Jose Fernandez) vs. Washington Nationals (Tanner Roark) – Fernandez is 15-0 with a 1.14 ERA in 24 career home starts.

Written by: Jason Kwok, Easy Streak Contributor
@TheBackwardsK

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2015 NFL Kickoff – Must See TV

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Thursday Night Football

Pittsburgh Steelers vs New England Patriots

I think we’ve had enough of ‘deflategate’ so let’s talk about the game. The defending champions will start the season at home against the Steelers. Without Le’Veon Bell (2-game suspension) and Martavis Bryant (4-game suspension), the Steelers will have to rely on Antonio Brown’s playmaking skills to put points on the scoreboard, but I don’t think he’ll be enough to win the game.

Sunday Night Football

New York Giants vs Dallas Cowboys

This will be an entertaining game to watch. Two of the league’s best wide receivers will be on the field: Dez Bryant and Odell Beckham Jr. Also, the pressure is on for Dallas Cowboys’ head coach Jason Garrett. Last season’s NFL leading rusher, DeMarco Murray, is now in Philadelphia. The Cowboys will need to rely on Tony Romo and Bryant to carry most of the load on offense, but I do think they’ll start the season 1-0.

Monday Night Football – Doubleheader

Philadelphia Eagles vs Atlanta Falcons

Sam Bradford and the Philadelphia Eagles have a lot to prove. Bradford is coming back from another ACL injury. Head Coach Chip Kelly has three talented running backs on the roster: DeMarco Murray, Ryan Mathews, and Darren Sproles. It will be tough for the Eagles to share the ball this season; however, their Week 1 opponent has some issues of their own. If the Eagles offense is clicking, they will be tough to beat.

Minnesota Vikings vs San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers had a crazy offseason. Jim Harbaugh left the 49ers to become the head coach at his alma mater, University of Michigan. Frank Gore bolted to the Indianapolis Colts. Chris Borland, Anthony Davis, Patrick Willis, and Justin Smith all announced their retirement. And Colin Kaepernick is still their starting quarterback. This might be a rough season for the 49ers.

 

Written by: Seth Heng, Easy Streak Contributor

The Return of NFL

challenge-competition-crowd-4109To celebrate the return of the NFL, I have compiled a couple teams I expect to overachieve, and a couple that should underachieve.

Overachievers

Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons have fallen on hard times since their NFC Title Game appearance in 2012, but they seem poised to bounce back this season. The offense should continue to be productive as long as Matt Ryan and Julio Jones stay healthy, while the defense should at least take a step forward with former Seahawks Defensive Coordinator Dan Quinn at the helm. Couple that with no clear favorite in the NFC South, and you have a recipe for a much better season for Atlanta and its fans.

Minnesota Vikings

While the Packers are still a near lock to win the NFC North, we can expect a much better season from the Vikings this year. Their defense should continue to improve in year 2 of Mike Zimmer’s regime, while Teddy Bridgewater, Mike Wallace, and the return of Adrian Peterson should help the offense put up points in bunches in Norv Turner’s scheme.

Underachievers

Seattle Seahawks

While the Seahawks should still be a very dangerous team this year, I expect their win total to drop off compared to the last two seasons. While they did add Jimmy Graham, they also lost some key contributors on an O-line that was already shaky to begin with. That, coupled with a difficult schedule, should see them have a tougher go of things this season.

Dallas Cowboys

The dominant O-line is still there, as are Tony Romo and Dez Bryant. Having said that, I have doubts on how well the defense will hold up and if Joseph Randle and Darren McFadden can replace the lost production of DeMarco Murray.

Written by: Keith Shaffer, Easy Streak Contributor

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Batter Up

football-playball-rugby-457The MLB playoffs are coming quickly! Teams are starting to hunker down for the run into October. Here are four teams in the hunt for a playoff spot that you should be choosing to win and lose over the course of the next week.

Two Up:

New York Mets:

Since the acquisition of Yoenis Cespedes and Tyler Clippard at the trade deadline, the Mets have looked like a new team. The offense has been revitalized with Cespedes’ big bat, the bullpen has solidified with Clippard’s 0.51 ERA in 18 appearances since the break, and the rotation continues to be anchored by Matt Harvey, Jacob DeGrom and Noah Syndergaard. The team has the weakest schedule in baseball from here on out and are a safe pick.

Toronto Blue Jays:

This offense is among the best the league has seen in years, and the addition of David Price atop the rotation has this team surging. Edwin Encarnacion seemingly can’t do anything but hit home runs and the quartet of Josh Donaldson, Jose Bautista, Troy Tulowitzki and Encarnacion is among the most feared in the last decade.

Two Down:

New York Yankees:

While rookie Luis Severino has been a major bright spot, the Yankees’ lack of organizational depth, from the lineup to the rotation, has been exposed in recent weekends as the Bronx Bombers have gone on a small skid down the American League East standings.

Los Angeles Dodgers:

The Dodgers’ no-hit by Jake Arrieta was just the cherry on top of the team’s recent struggles. The absence of a healthy Yasiel Puig and the epic struggle of Joc Pederson at the plate has caused an offensive drought in Chavez Ravine, as the team tries to keep pace in the National League West to avoid a disappointing season once again in Los Angeles.

Written by: Joon Lee, Easy Streak Contributor
@iamjoonlee

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Kicking into Gear

Kicking into Gear

Welcome to the first ever Easy Streak weekly MLS guide. Each week, we’ll break down every match up available for you to pick from. We will be giving you the best tips and an expert prognostication for each game in hopes of getting you the most points possible. For every game we’ll expand upon which team is the best pick and how confident we are of the prediction. Let’s get started!

This week offers six different games, an abbreviated slate of games with international soccer on the docket as well – four games on Saturday, one on Sunday, and one on Wednesday. Without further ado, here are the picks:

Saturday, September 5th

New England Revolution vs. Orlando City

The Revolution host Orlando on Saturday; the Revs have won three straight games and only lost once in their last six games, while Orlando has gone winless in their last five. Even without Jermaine Jones due to international duty, the Revs are strong favorites in this one at home.

Winner: New England Revolution

Confidence Rating: 80%

 

Montreal Impact vs. Chicago Fire

This one is a matchup of two struggling sides on the outside looking in at a playoff spot. The Impact just fired their manager despite being just one point out of the sixth and final playoff spot. However, Chicago has had a dreadful season with not much optimism for the final two months. Montreal at home are the small favorites.

Winner: Montreal Impact

Confidence Rating: 60%

 

Seattle Sounders vs. Toronto FC

Both of these teams had extremely high expectations entering the season. The Sounders have won two of their last three after being mired in a horrible two-month losing streak. Their star-studded roster has been hit by the injury bug all season, but they are finally getting close to full strength. Toronto has been carried by Sebastian Giovinco all season, but the Italian star is sidelined with injury, making Seattle the clear favorites at home.

Winner: Seattle Sounders

Confidence Rating: 75%

 

San Jose Earthquakes vs. Philadelphia Union

The Quakes are on an unbelievable run of form with a four-game winning streak that includes victories over three of the top teams in the league. They are at home and playing possibly the worst team in the league; this should be the lock of the week.

Winner: San Jose Earthquakes

Confidence Rating: 90%

 

Sunday, September 6th

Columbus Crew SC vs. FC Dallas

This matchup is a tough one to call. Both are third place in their respective conferences and have had up-and-down form recently. Dallas will be without their main goal threat Fabian Castillo who is on international duty. That factor, coupled with the game being in Columbus, leads us to favor the Crew.

Winner: Columbus Crew SC

Confidence Rating: 55%

 

Wednesday, September 9th

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Colorado Rapids

The Whitecaps have alternated winning and losing each of the last six weeks. They’ve conceded top spot in the West to LA in doing so. They face off against the last place Colorado Rapids. The Caps score a ton of goals while, amazingly, the Rapids have let in the fewest amount in the league. On paper this looks like an easy pick, but in MLS there is never a sure thing.

Winner: Vancouver Whitecaps

Confidence Rating: 65%

Written by Rob Usry, Easy Streak Contributor

@RobUsry

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