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Chris Cooley's Redskins fantasy football preview

The Redskins' second-, third- and fourth-best fantasy options. (By Jason Reed - Reuters)

I had my first fantasy football draft of the season on Sunday night. It was with a lot of Redskins blogger types. Redskins were overvalued.

So I wanted to ask noted fantasy geek Chris Cooley for a fair assessment of where the Redskins' viable fantasy prospects -- Cooley, Clinton Portis, Donovan McNabb and Santana Moss -- should be taken.

Turns out, he had his own first fantasy draft of the season on Sunday night, and he wound up with a heap of Redskins.

"I picked Clinton in the fourth round as my second back," Cooley told me. "He's low on everybody's lists, but he's a 1 in a renowned running offense, and he's in shape, and clearly he's ready to play football. I think Clinton's a steal in the fourth round, in my opinion, but I got some sneers."

("I would say somewhere in the fourth to sixth [round] range," agreed backup tackle Clint Oldenburg, whose draft is this weekend. "I think he's primed to have a big year. He's in shape, running real well, and he looks real good in our offensive zone scheme. I can't see him going any later than sixth.")

I told Cooley some national observers still aren't sold on Portis being the clear No. 1 here.

"Well, he is now, going into the first week of the season," Cooley said. "That's what I'm going off of. It might be a reach [in the fourth]. It might be a reach. But I wanted him."

Speaking of reaches, Cooley drafted himself, early in the sixth round.

"Two tight ends had already been taken and I figured I wasn't gonna cycle 18 more picks back to myself, and I wanted to be able to talk trash to everybody in the league about myself," he said. "If you're in a league with Redskins fans, I'm maybe a sixth-round guy. If you're in a league somewhere else, I might fall to 8th, 9th. It just depends when the tight ends go off the board."


"The hard thing with Tana is over his career, he's had big games, thus producing a lot of points in the overall end-of-the-year category, but he hasn't been the guy that's had 70, 80 yards and a touchdown every week," Cooley said, accurately. "He's had 180 yards and three touchdowns, and then the next week he'll have two catches. At least for your first two receivers, you try to get a guy that's gonna get seven or eight catches a week, I think."


"If you can get McNabb in the 5th or 6th, I think that's a good pick," Cooley said. "He's always gotten a lot of fantasy points. He's a great fantasy quarterback."

Cooley labeled Larry Johnson the team's fantasy sleeper, but Oldenburg had a more creative answer:

"Double A, Anthony Armstrong," Oldenburg said. "In a late round, he could be really good. In fact, if he's available in my draft, I'm gonna take him late, like a fourth receiver. I would take Double A [over Joey Galloway] just because he's got so much speed, and you can't teach speed. I think he's gonna be a great player."

"A lot of people have been telling me they've been drafting me," Armstrong said. "I haven't looked at any rankings, but I just know some of my friends keep texting me saying, 'Hey I drafted you in my fantasy football so I need you to put up some numbers.' I'm like, I appreciate it, I'll do my best. Shoot, if I played, I'd draft me, too."

But Cooley and Oldenburg both said they'll willingly overvalue teammates, so maybe this isn't the most objective advice in the world.

"I get guys that I like, guys that I want to succeed," Cooley said. "So it's not like the guys that I actually care about do poorly, but yesssss, my fantasy team balled out! I want them to both do well."

"I don't want to go out there cheering for any other team," Oldenburg said. "If we're playing the Jaguars, you don't want to be like 'Aw man, I need Maurice Jones-Drew to score a couple touchdowns.' Nah. As many teammates as you can get."

By Dan Steinberg  |  August 30, 2010; 2:29 PM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
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I'll never forget Cooley's 3 TDs against Dallas in the 35 pt spanking of Dallas in 2005, which put us in the driver's seat for the playoffs and crushed Dallas's hopes. The only problem for Cooley was he was in the fantasy playoffs at the time, and was playing against a guy that had HIM (Cooley) on his his roster. So while his 3 TDs helped his real life time win, it cost him the championship in the fantasy world. Ironic.

Posted by: Barno1 | August 30, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Only four Redskins were taken in my league. I was the first to draft a Redskin, taking Clinton Portis in the 6th round. Santana and Cooley were both taken in the 7th. McNabb was taken as a backup in the 10th.

Portis in the 6th round might have been a little early based on his performance last year, but I just went with my gut and scooped him up. He's had a good preseason so far.

I think Cooley, Santana, and McNabb were all pretty good value picks for the respective rounds they were drafted in.

Posted by: MillBurray | August 30, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Right before that game, Barno, Santana went off too. I had both of them and they carried me to the championship!!!

Posted by: merajc86 | August 30, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Cooley won me a title that year, that game was nuts. If I remember he had all three tds in the first half too

Posted by: jpfterps | August 30, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Isn't this like Pete Rose betting on baseball? What if McNabb drafts Moss instead of Cooley, will he force the ball to Moss and avoid Cooley on the week he is playing the team that has him? I think Goodell needs to look into this.

Posted by: MrDumberton | August 30, 2010 8:17 PM | Report abuse

I took you in the 5th Cooley! Passed up T. Gonzalez to snatch you up. Fantasy Football aside, I hope you all have a great season, period. Burgundy & Gold! HTTR.

Posted by: stevo301PG | August 31, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Just don't pass up on Romo if he is still there in the 4th. He's going to have a monster year!!!!

Posted by: AaronDavistheLizardKing | August 31, 2010 11:12 PM | Report abuse

I've had McNabb in fantasy league before and he's always been good. If he's healthy I think he'll be fine.


Posted by: bricarr2 | September 1, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Isn't this like Pete Rose betting on baseball? What if McNabb drafts Moss instead of Cooley, will he force the ball to Moss and avoid Cooley on the week he is playing the team that has him? I think Goodell needs to look into this.

Posted by: MrDumberton | August 30, 2010 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Maybe you're being silly, but it does bring up an interesting dillemma if they're in a money league. One could, in fact, argue that this is gambling on football. Interesting question.

Posted by: skinsfan713 | September 1, 2010 7:01 PM | Report abuse

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