Now, it's getting interesting.
The seemingly invincible has been vanquished. The also-rans are now neck-and-neck with the front-runners. One week can make all the difference in fantasy football.
One week ago, Yung Joc was riding high, undefeated and consistently putting up serious points week in and week out. But a couple of key injuries brought him down to Earth and shifted the balance of power in the league. Suddenly, Lil Wayne and Paul Wall are back in contention, and Method Man — who couldn't buy a win to start the season — is in the hunt as well.
This, friends, is why they play the games. Here's how the action went down this week:
|Liz Hernandez (78) vs. Tyrese "Black Ty" Gibson (97)|
|Michael Vick, Atlanta (14 points)||QB||Donovan McNabb, Philadelphia (35 points)|
|Steven Jackson, St. Louis (20 points)||RB||Tiki Barber, New York (0 points)|
|Rudi Johnson, Cincinnati (14 points)||RB||Thomas Jones, Chicago (21 points)|
|Randy Moss, Oakland (6 points)||WR||Torry Holt, St. Louis (16 points)|
|Terrell Owens, Dallas (8 points)||WR||Matt Jones, Jacksonville (1 point)|
|Chris Cooley, Washington (7 points)||TE||L.J. Smith, Philadelphia (3 points)|
|San Diego Chargers (6 points)||D/ST||New England Patriots (10 points)|
|John Kasay, Carolina (3 points)||K||Olindo Mare, Miami (11 points)|
Is this any way to treat the new kid in town? Our new on-air correspondent got her bell rung courtesy of a monster performance from resurgent Donovan McNabb. It's one thing to win by almost 20 points in the fantasy universe; it's another to win by almost 20 points while starting a running back whose team is sitting out the week with a bye. And with that, Tyrese moves to the top of the MTV News Fantasy Football League power rankings.
|Cool & Dre (58) vs. Method Man (68)|
|Peyton Manning, Indianapolis (18 points)||QB||Carson Palmer, Cincinnati (9 points)|
|Ronnie Brown, Miami (10 points)||RB||Jamal Lewis, Baltimore (3 points)|
|Ahman Green, Green Bay (0 points)||RB||Dominic Rhodes, Indianapolis (13 points)|
|Steve Smith, Carolina (14 points)||WR||Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis (7 points)|
|Donald Driver, Green Bay (5 points)||WR||Chris Chambers, Miami (9 points)|
|Dallas Clark, Indianapolis (1 point)||TE||Todd Heap, Baltimore (12 points)|
|Carolina Panthers (2 points)||D/ST||New Orleans Saints (1 point)|
|David Akers, Philadelphia (8 points)||K||Robbie Gould, Chicago (14 points)|
After a shaky start, Meth's on track with two wins in a row. In a matchup that featured Peyton Manning, Carson Palmer and Steve Smith, it may have been Chicago kicker Robbie Gould (and his 14 points) that made the difference, securing Meth the win. Not a bad showing for a guy with five regular starters out due to injuries and the bye week (the late scratch of Cool & Dre running back Ahman Green due to injury didn't hurt).
|Uncle Luke (67) vs. Lil Wayne (89)|
|Byron Leftwich, Jacksonville (22 points)||QB||Daunte Culpepper, Miami (13 points)|
|Edgerrin James, Arizona (7 points)||RB||Larry Johnson, Kansas City (26 points)|
|Warrick Dunn, Atlanta (6 points)||RB||Reggie Bush, New Orleans (6 points)|
|Chad Johnson, Cincinnati (6 points)||WR||Marvin Harrison, Indianapolis (7 points)|
|Antonio Bryant, San Francisco (2 points)||WR||Muhsin Muhammad, Chicago (10 points)|
|Desmond Clark, Chicago (3 points)||TE||Tony Gonzalez, Kansas City (5 points)|
|Chicago Bears (14 points)||D/ST||Atlanta Falcons (18 points)|
|Ryan Longwell, Minnesota (7 points)||K||John Carney, New Orleans (4 points)|
At some point today, Lil Wayne will sit down and write a very nice thank-you note to Larry Johnson, who exploded for 26 points, cementing another win for Wayne's crew. Luke countered with strong performances from Byron Leftwich and the Bears defense, but leaving Santana Moss (and his 31 points) on the bench did not help at all. Of course, Wayne had Clinton Portis (19 points), Laurence Maroney (25 points) and Marques Colston (19 points) wasting away on his bench, so maybe Luke should be happy this one wasn't even worse.
|Paul Wall (64) vs. Yung Joc (44)|
|Drew Bledsoe, Dallas (13 points)||QB||Drew Brees, New Orleans (19 points)|
|Corey Dillon, New England (12 points)||RB||LaDainian Tomlinson, San Diego (9 points)|
|Fred Taylor, Jacksonville (1 point)||RB||Brian Westbrook, Philadelphia (0 points)|
|Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona (6 points)||WR||Anquan Boldin, Arizona (4 points)|
|Roy Williams, Detroit (13 points)||WR||Joe Horn, New Orleans (8 points)|
|Antonio Gates, San Diego (4 points)||TE||Alge Crumpler, Atlanta (3 points)|
|Indianapolis Colts (6 points)||D/ST||Seattle Seahawks (1 points)|
|Shayne Graham, Cincinnati (9 points)||K||Adam Vinatieri, Indianapolis (0 points)|
After looking indestructible through the first three weeks of the season — and putting up some huge weekly scores — Yung Joc fell to Earth hard this week, managing only 44 points. Two of Joc's key starters (Brian Westbrook and Adam Viniateri) were late scratches due to injury, and the guys who did play seemed to underperform. Only QB Drew Brees seemed to show up for Joc, putting up 19 points, while Paul Wall got double-digit performances from Drew Bledsoe, Corey Dillon and Roy Williams. The Houston Texans may want to give local boy Paul a call for a little guidance.
Check back on Friday to see this weekend's matchups. In the meantime, here's how the race shapes up so far:
|Standings: Gridiron Gangstas|
|Team||Wins||Losses||Points For||Points Against|
|Standings: Crunchtime Zone Firing Squad|
|Team||Wins||Losses||Points For||Points Against|
|Tyrese "Black Ty" Gibson||3||1||319||296|
|Cool & Dre||2||2||297||258|