Postcards From Camp: Big Boys

Bobby Sansone, Senior Writer

August 18, 2005

Aged to Imperfection
Eli Manning
Will this be the year that Eli awakens the Boys from their drunken stupor?

QUINCY, MA Chris Davidson strolls through morning workouts and seldom glances up at the sound of a great play. Hidden beneath the brim of his size 6 3/4 baseball cap is an owner who critics say has passed his time. The "Joe Paterno" of the YFFL insists he still has what it takes to lead the Boys to the playoffs despite only accomplishing that feat once this century.

Davidson doesn't listen to the critics that flood WEEI's switchboard daily with calls that say he should be fired and his draft strategies to target TEs in the first round is killing the team's future.

Davidson doesn't listen to fellow owners who criticize his unwillingness to trade. He doesn't listen to the fans, the media or unhappy players for that matter either. He insists he'll step down on his own terms just like the man he is most compared to...Joe Paterno.

Biggest Question Facing Owner Chris Davidson

When will Manning be ready? Eli Manning should be vastly improved after a so-so rookie season. Meanwhile Favre is slowly seeing his fantasy numbers decline. At some point this year, Favre will take a back seat to Manning. The key component in this move is Jeremy Shockey. If Shockey gets hot than that could be the signal that it's time for Manning to start.

Bolling for Kylebine

Lost somewhere between the Favres and Mannings of the world is Kyle Boller. Boller, a former first round draft pick, has just 2 career points and is now 3rd on the depth chart. Boller appears to be the epitome of what Davidson is doing wrong - drafting guys early and then not playing them. With Davidson's knack for not trading, guys like Kyle Boller become wasted first round draft picks.

Fast Fact: The Boys' last three first round draft picks have combined for 82 career points, dead last among all YFFL teams

Probable Starters

Favre, Bennett, Jones, Price, Wayne, Shockey, Janikowski, Randle El

Final Observations

The Boys had a few pleasant surprises in 2004 from Reggie Wayne and Reuben Droughns which made them competitive in the NFC East. However, Michael Bennett and Peerless Price were disappointments again so the foursome just essentially cancelled each other out. Shockey scored a career-best 36 points last season but still not close to the numbers Davidson expected when drafting him 4th overall four years ago. Manning will be a top fantasy starter before the year is over but he will have to wait his turn behind Favre. Favre, Wayne, Shockey and Janikowski will be the only consistent scoring threats for the Boys week in and week out.

Projected Record

5-8; 3rd NFC East