Week 3: Engel's Mailbag
Engel: This was a fun week to dip into my mailbag, as I received many angry letters from Grossman backers. It reminded me of the angry letters I received when I refused to back Joey Harrington as a breakout candidate last year. Grossman is no Harrington, for sure. But it will take more than just one big game at home against a shaky opponent to convince me he will be a regular standout. This past week, I was accused of having an "East Coast bias", when I'm not even a supporter of an East Coast NFL team. I was told that Grossman is the "next Brett Favre." That's a stretch. I was also told that Grossman has an easy schedule the rest of the way. I don't get too caught up in schedule analysis with the Bears, especially after only two weeks. Regardless of the opposition, I think they won't be a pass-first team too often, and much can change both offensively and defensively in the weeks ahead. I do appreciate all the feedback, good or bad, and if Grossman turns out to be a fantasy standout, I'll gladly admit I am wrong. Last year's Green Bay pass defense numbers don't matter much. They allowed a lot of rushing yards last year (125.6 per game) and this is a new season in which they clearly have trouble defending the pass consistently. They are already second-worst in the NFC against the pass (292 yards per game allowed) and the Seahawks have clearly sputtered in the passing game early this year save for a hot early start against Arizona. They clearly had trouble moving the ball after gaining an early 14-0 lead. Grossman has had one big game and all of a sudden people are overrating him. I could be underrating him, but I'm not about to endorse him as a top fantasy starter yet. I expect him to operate a more controlled and less explosive passing game when he's healthy, and he should be a solid fantasy reserve. But one game does not make him an elite fantasy passer. I heard the same things about Billy Volek and Kyle Boller in past years when they put together short hot streaks. Grossman is a better QB than those two, especially Boller, but those two players are proof that a good fantasy QB maintains a consistent modicum of above-average statistical production. Grossman might help the Bears to a winning season, but he won't necessarily always be explosive along the way. But keep those Grossman e-mails coming, and I do wish all of you Grossman owners much success this season.
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