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The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards

Illustration for article titled The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards

A few months ago, we compiled a Fantasy Football Almanac of results from 1970 to 2011. Now we're ready to update the almanac for the 2012 season, with awards for the best players and some new data as well. Take a look, then add your comments, analyses, quibbles, and rants in the discussion below.


No fantasy scoring system is more valid than any other, but we used the following, from Pro Football Reference's fantasy stats page: 1 point per 25 yards passing, 1 point per 10 yards rushing/receiving, 6 points per touchdown, and -2 points per interception. The raw stats are also based on PFR's numbers. PFR and Chase Stuart of Football Perspective provided us with some extra stats for this edition, for which we're very grateful.


For records from 1970 to 2002, check out our original post.

The Brady Award: Given to the quarterback with the highest point total. Named after Tom Brady for his record-breaking 2007 performance.

The 2012 Brady Award goes to Drew Brees, whose 5,177 yards and 43 touchdowns both led the league. His 19 interceptions allowed Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers to come within just a few points of his 346 total. Those three quarterbacks have won every Brady Award for the last six years, with each winning twice.

2003Daunte Culpepper333
2004Peyton Manning460
2005Carson Palmer332
2006Peyton Manning371
2007Tom Brady498
2008Drew Brees373
2009Aaron Rodgers405
2010Tom Brady373
2011Aaron Rodgers487
2012Drew Brees346

The Emmitt Smith Award: Given to the running back with the highest point totals. Named after Emmitt Smith, who won the award four years in a row.

The 2012 Smith Award goes to Adrian Peterson, who out-rushed his nearest competitor by over 400 yards. His overall point total, 307, would certainly have been higher had the rest of the Vikings offense cooperated. This is Peterson's first Smith Award in his third nomination.

2003Priest Holmes373
2004Shaun Alexander307
2005Shaun Alexander364
2006LaDanian Tomlinson431
2007LaDanian Tomlinson310
2008DeAngelo Williams284
2009Chris Johnson347
2010Arian Foster330
2011Ray Rice303
2012Adrian Peterson307

The Rice Award: Given to the wide receiver with the highest point total. Named after Jerry Rice, who won the award eight times in 10 years.


The 2012 Rice Award goes to Calvin Johnson, who becomes the first player since Marvin Harrison to win the award twice in a row. Johnson broke the NFL record with 1,964 yards, but his low touchdown total (five) allowed Brandon Marshall to come within a few points of beating him.

2003Randy Moss267
2004Muhsin Muhammad238
2005Steve Smith237
2006Marvin Harrison209
2007Randy Moss287
2008Larry Fitzgerald215
2009Andre Johnson212
2010Brandon Lloyd209
2011Calvin Johnson265
2012Calvin Johnson220

The Christensen Award: Given to the tight end with the most points. Named after Todd Christensen, who won the award four years in a row.

The 2012 Christensen Award goes to Jimmy Graham, who put up 152 points despite struggling with a dislocated finger in the last half of the season. Graham fought off Rob Gronkowski, who came within nine points of a repeat after putting up a record 241 in 2011.

2003Tony Gonzalez152
2004Antonio Gates174
2005Antonio Gates170
2006Antonio Gates146
2007Jason Witten157
2008Tony Gonzalez166
2009Vernon Davis175
2010Jason Witten154
2011Rob Gronkowski241
2012Jimmy Graham152

The Tomlinson Award: Given to the player who has the highest value with respect to his position. The award is named after LaDanian Tomlinson for his 2006 season. Value is measured in VBD, which stands for "Value Based Drafting." VBD takes the player's point total and subtracts the point total of the baseline starter at that position. PFR's VBD calculation uses the 12th best QBs and TEs, the 24th best RB, and the 30th best WR as the baseline starters. It also adjusts the totals for years with shorter schedules. While the exact value of VBD can vary depending on the baseline level, the important thing is that it allows us to compare across positions. It's the best stat for a basic MVP award.


The 2012 Tomlinson Award goes to Adrian Peterson, whose 191 VBD beat out rookie Doug Martin's by 45. The top six players by VBD were all running backs this year, and only one quarterback appears in the top 10.

2003Priest Holmes231
2004Peyton Manning199
2005Shaun Alexander221
2006LaDanian Tomlinson270
2007Tom Brady241
2008DeAngelo Williams135
2009Chris Johnson197
2010Arian Foster192
2011Aaron Rodgers215
2012Adrian Peterson191

The Beuerlein Award: Given to the player who provided the most value with respect to where fantasy owners drafted him. I used My Fantasy League's average draft position (ADP) records, which date back to 1999, to estimate the draft spot, and VBD to estimate value. The award is named after Steve Beuerlein, the first winner.

The 2012 Beuerlein Award goes to Alfred Morris, the Redskins' running back. Early in the year, it looked like Robert Griffin III, Morris's fellow rookie and teammate, would be a shoo-in after being drafted 78th on average. But Morris overtook him in the long haul—he finished with a VBD of 124 (fifth overall) despite an ADP of 132. That means the average 12-team league waited 11 full rounds to pick him.

2003Priest Holmes5231
2004Peyton Manning13199
2005Larry Johnson78192
2006LaDanian Tomlinson3270
2007Tom Brady23241
2008DeAngelo Willians88135
2009Chris Johnson12197
2010Arian Foster59192
2011Rob Gronkowski104143
2012Alfred Morris132124

The Goodell Award: Given to the player who was the biggest bust by the same logic as that of the Beuerlein Award. Named after Roger Goodell, for obvious reasons.


The 2012 Goodell Award goes to Larry Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald was the second wideout drafted on average, which may have paid off in leagues that award points for running routes well. But neither Arizona nor his fantasy owners got any credit for him because of the vaudeville troupe—John Skelton, Kevin Kolb, Brian Hoyer, a cryogenically frozen Sammy Baugh—that ran the offense this year. He finished 42nd overall among wide receivers despite playing the full season. Fitz gets the Goodell over middling running backs LeSean McCoy and Darren McFadden because of a few spaced-out quality performances that kept him in fantasy lineups. Roger Goodell was another close runner-up, but no one expected anything out of him.

YearNameADPTotal Points
2003Corey Dillon2073
2004Marshall Faulk20132
2005Daunte Culpepper1095
2006LaMont Jordan1363
2007Laurence Maroney13131
2008Braylon Edwards21105
2009Michael Turner4151
2010Randy Moss1569
2011Jamaal Charles615
2012Larry Fitzgerald20104

The Cannon Award: Given to the player with the best single-game performance of the season. Named after Billy Cannon. The list below includes the top point totals at each position as well.

The 2012 Cannon Award goes to Doug Martin for his 51-point performance against Oakland. Martin became the ninth player since the merger to put up 50 points in one game, and his total was the highest since Clinton Portis's record 55 against the Chiefs in 2003. Russell Wilson and Dez Bryant put up the best QB and WR totals in Weeks 15 and 16, respectively, which may have won a few fantasy owners the championship.

2003QBSFOARI14Jeff Garcia41
2003RBDENKAN14Clinton Portis55
2003TEDENSDG11Shannon Sharpe28
2003WRNORNYG15Joe Horn37
2004QBTENOAK15Billy Volek42
2004RBKANATL7Priest Holmes42
2004TECLECIN12Steve Heiden26
2004WRTENKAN14Drew Bennett41
2005QBPHISFO2Donovan McNabb34
2005RBSDGNYG3LaDainian Tomlinson45
2005TESDGKAN8Antonio Gates33
2005WRCARMIA3Steve Smith35
2006QBPHIGNB4Donovan McNabb36
2006RBINDPHI12Joseph Addai45
2006TEATLPIT7Alge Crumpler30
2006WRDENPIT9Javon Walker39
2007QBCINCLE2Carson Palmer41
2007RBMINSDG9Adrian Peterson50
2007TENWECLE5Ben Watson24
2007WRDALWAS11Terrell Owens41
2008QBNWEMIA12Matt Cassel36
2008RBMIANWE3Ronnie Brown41
2008TEMINATL16Visanthe Shiancoe26
2008WRARIMIA2Anquan Boldin32
2008WRTAMCAR14Antonio Bryant32
2009QBNWETEN6Tom Brady39
2009RBCLEKAN15Jerome Harrison48
2009TESFOHOU7Vernon Davis27
2009WRDALKAN5Miles Austin37
2010QBPHIWAS10Michael Vick49
2010RBOAKDEN7Darren McFadden44
2010TESDGARI4Antonio Gates26
2010WRTENPHI7Kenny Britt41
2011QBGNBDEN4Aaron Rodgers48
2011RBHOUTEN7Arian Foster41
2011TENWEWAS14Rob Gronkowski28
2011WRNWEBUF3Wes Welker36
2012QBSEABUF15Russell Wilson39
2012RBTAMRAI9Doug Martin51
2012TENWERAM8Rob Gronkowski27
2012TENORATL10Jimmy Graham27
2012WRDALNOR16Dez Bryant34

The Vick Award: Given to the player with the best fantasy performance on Monday Night Football. Named after Michael Vick for his 49-point game in 2010.


The 2012 Vick Award goes to Cam Newton for putting up 37 against Philly in Week 12. Newton compiled 358 total yards and four touchdowns. It was a meaningless game, but Newton's performance probably knocked a number of fantasy teams out of the playoffs.

2003Ahman Green1034GNBPHI
2004Drew Bennett1441TENKAN
2005Edgerrin James634INDSTL
2006Donovan McNabb436PHIGNB
2007Vince Young1130TENDEN
2008Antonio Bryant1432TAMCAR
2009Drew Brees1235NORNWE
2010Michael Vick1049PHIWAS
2011Drew Brees1237NORNYG
2012Cam Newton1237CARPHI

Now for a closer look at the 2012 season. Here are three hypothetical fantasy teams from the 2012 season. Each has one quarterback, two running backs, two wide receivers, one tight end, and one kicker. The first, "Best Squad," consists of the best possible players from that particular week, giving you the maximum score in ESPN standard leagues. "Dream Team" consists of the highest-drafted active players at each position for that week. "Choke Artists" consists of the worst possible active players you could start for that particular week who were drafted top 10 at their position.

Week 1

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Matt Ryan31Aaron Rodgers22Eli Manning12
CJ Spiller22Arian Foster19Maurice Jones-Drew8
Alfred Morris21Ray Rice20Chris Johnson4
Kevin Ogletree23Calvin Johnson11Greg Jennings3
Julio Jones22Andre Johnson17Wes Welker1
Jimmy Graham14Rob Gronkowski12Jason Witten1
Jets D/ST1849ers D/ST5Steeler D/ST3
Billy Cundiff18Stephen Gostkowski10Mason Crosby2
169 116 34

Week 2

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
RGIII30Aaron Rodgers10Aaron Rodgers10
Reggie Bush31Arian Foster20Darren McFadden3
CJ Spiller28Ray Rice14Chris Johnson2
Hakeem Nicks25Calvin Johnson9Larry Fitzgerald0
Victor Cruz23Andre Johnson2Julio Jones1
Dante Rosario22Rob Gronkowski13Aaron Hernandez0
Packers D/St2149ers D/ST6Jets D/ST3
Stephen Gostkowski16Stephen Gostkowski16Billy Cundiff3
196 90 22

Week 3

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Ben Roethlisberger31Aaron Rodgers9Michael Vick5
Jamaal Charles34Arian Foster16LeSean McCoy7
Maurice Jones-Drew24Ray Rice20Chris Johnson2
AJ Green25Calvin Johnson22Roddy White5
Torrey Smith24Andre Johnson13Greg Jennings3
Heath Miller18Rob Gronkowski2Jason Witten0
Bears D/ST2349ers D/ST4Patriots D/ST-5
Ryan Succop21Stephen Gostkowski13Nate Kaeding4
200 99 21

Week 4

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Tom Brady31Aaron Rodgers27Tony Romo6
Michael Turner22Arian Foster14Matt Forte5
Steven Ridley22Ray Rice8Darren McFadden3
Brian Hartline31Calvin Johnson5Calvin Johnson5
Roddy White28Andre Johnson23Julio Jones3
Scott Chandler18Rob Gronkowski14Vernon Davis2
49ers D/St2749ers D/ST27Packers D/ST-3
Greg Zuerlein18Stephen Gostkowski8Mason Crosby4
197 126 25

Week 5

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Drew Brees28Aaron Rodgers24RGIII3
Ahmad Bradshaw26Arian Foster22Maurice Jones-Drew5
Arian Foster22Ray Rice11Chris Johnson0
Marques Colston31Andre Johnson1Mike Wallace1
Reggie Wayne27Roddy White (Fitzgerald & Megatron on bye)6Andre Johnson1
Tony Gonzalez18Rob Gronkowski3Jimmy Graham0
Bears D/ST2849ers D/ST11Packers D/ST0
Blair Walsh13Stephen Gostkowski7Mason Crosby1
193 85 11

Week 6

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Aaron Rodgers38Aaron Rodgers38Eli Manning11
Shonn Greene34Arian Foster15DeMarco Murray9
Ray Rice22Ray Rice22Marshawn Lynch5
Jordy Nelson30Calvin Johnson13Julio Jones6
AJ Green25Andre Johnson7Hakeem Nicks4
Antonio Gates20Rob Gronkowski6Jermichael Finley1
Broncos D/ST2849ers D/ST2Eagles D/ST-1
Jason Hanson16Stephen Gostkowski11David Akers2
213 114 37

Week 7

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Drew Brees29Aaron Rodgers25Tony Romo14
Chris Johnson31Arian Foster21DeMarco Murray9
Adrian Peterson21Ray Rice5Marshawn Lynch5
Vincent Jackson27Calvin Johnson3Calvin Johnson3
Randall Cobb21Andre Johnson8Larry Fitzgerald2
Rob Gronkowski19Rob Gronkowski19Vernon Davis0
Texans D/ST2249ers D/ST10Ravens D/ST-4
Nick Folk18Stephen Gostkowski11Blair Walsh3
188 102 32

Week 8

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Matthew Stafford31Aaron Rodgers13Eli Manning5
Doug Martin31LeSean McCoy (Foster on bye)18Darren McFadden13
Willis McGahee19Chris Johnson (Rice on bye)10Chris Johnson10
Titus Young22Calvin Johnson4Hakeem Nicks4
Michael Crabtree19Larry Fitzgerald (Andre on bye)5Roddy White3
Rob Gronkowski26Rob Gronkowski26Antonio Gates1
Dolphins D/ST2049ers D/ST12Seahawks D/ST0
Lawrence Tynes19Stephen Gostkowski9Greg Zuerlein1
187 97 37

Week 9

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Carson Palmer28Aaron Rodgers25Eli Manning3
Doug Martin51Arian Foster17LeSean McCoy12
Adrian Peterson31Ray Rice15Darren McFadden1
Brandon Marshall30Calvin Johnson12Andre Johnson11
Eric Decker21Andre Johnson11Hakeem Nicks1
Brandon Myers17Jimmy Graham (Gronk on bye)13Jermichael Finley0
Bears D/ST26Ravens D/ST (49ers on bye)8Eagles D/ST4
Phil Dawson16Mason Crosby (Gost, Akers on bye)6Garrett Hartley3
220 107 35

Week 10

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Joe Flacco29Tom Brady (Rodgers on bye)17Eli Manning2
Adrian Peterson25Arian Foster17LeSean McCoy10
Fred Jackson21Ray Rice12Matt Forte3
Calvin Johnson24Calvin Johnson24Mike Wallace7
Danario Alexander19Andre Johnson3Andre Johnson3
Jimmy Graham26Rob Gronkowski9Vernon Davis3
Broncos D/ST2849ers D/ST-149ers D/ST-1
Stephen Gostkowski15Stephen Gostkowski15David Akers6
187 96 33

Week 11

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Matt Schaub37Aaron Rodgers15Matt Ryan2
Marcel Reece19Arian Foster8Arian Foster8
LaRod Stephens-Howling18Ray Rice9Matt Forte6
Andre Johnson33Calvin Johnson18Mike Wallace0
Justin Blackmon29Andre Johnson33Larry Fitzgerald1
Rob Gronkowski25Rob Gronkowski25Antonio Gates1
Patriots D/ST2449ers D/ST18Texans D/ST-4
Josh Scobee15Stephen Gostkowski10Greg Zuerlein1
200 136 15

Week 12

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Cam Newton37Aaron Rodgers10Aaron Rodgers10
Bryce Brown26Arian Foster23Marshawn Lynch4
Arian Foster23Ray Rice15Matt Forte2
Dez Bryant24Calvin Johnson20Mike Wallace0
Calvin Johnson20Andre Johnson18Larry Fitzgerald3
Charles Clay14Jimmy Graham (Gronk out)3Vernon Davis0
49ers D/ST2349ers D/ST23Jets D/ST-6
Rob Bironas13Stephen Gostkowski6Garrett Hartlet3
180 118 16

Week 13

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Cam Newton28Aaron Rodgers14Drew Brees3
Adrian Peterson28Arian Foster10Arian Foster10
Bryce Brown27Ray Rice13Chris Johnson5
Calvin Johnson23Calvin Johnson23Roddy White2
Donnie Avery21Andre Johnson5Larry Fitzgerald2
Brandon Myers19Jimmy Graham (Gronk out)5Vernon Davis1
Texans D/ST2049ers D/ST5Bears D/ST-1
Jason Hanson18Stephen Gostkowski11Blair Walsh2
184 86 24

Week 14

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Cam Newton36Aaron Rodgers13Tony Romo12
Marshawn Lynch30Arian Foster13Matt Forte11
Adrian Peterson28Ray Rice19Chris Johnson5
Mike Wallace23Calvin Johnson11Greg Jennings2
Brandon Marshall22Andre Johnson9Larry Fitzgerald0
Aaron Hernandez17Jimmy Graham (Gronk out)5Vernon Davis0
Seahawks D/ST3949ers D/ST9Texans D/ST-3
Steven Hauschka16Stephen Gostkowski6Greg Zuerlein1
211 85 28

Week 15

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Russell Wilson39Aaron Rodgers24Eli Manning2
Adrian Peterson27Arian Foster16Darren McFadden12
Beanie Wells24Ray Rice3Ray Rice3
James Jones24Calvin Johnson12Roddy White1
Michael Crabtree22Andre Johnson21Larry Fitzgerald2
Dennis Pitta24Jimmy Graham (Gronk out)6Vernon Davis1
Cardinals D/ST2549ers D/ST4Ravens D/ST0
Blair Walsh25Stephen Gostkowski11Greg Zuerlein2
210 97 23

Week 16

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Tony Romo32Aaron Rodgers32Eli Manning10
Reggie Bush28Arian Foster0Chris Johnson3
Jamaal Charles26Ray Rice21Arian Foster0
Dez Bryant34Calvin Johnson20Mike Wallace1
Roddy White27Andre Johnson9Hakeem Nicks0
Lance Kendricks17Jimmy Graham (Gronk out)8Vernon Davis1
Bears D/ST2749ers D/ST049ers D/ST0
Justin Tucker15Stephen Gostkowski11Greg Zuerlein2
206 101 17

Week 17

Best Squad "Dream Team" Choke Artists
Drew Brees29Aaron Rodgers28Cam Newton10
Alfred Morris39Arian Foster17Darren McFadden5
DeAngelo Williams33Ray Rice0Ray Rice0
Michael Crabtree29Calvin Johnson7Larry Fitzgerald1
Greg Jennings24Andre Johnson14AJ Green2
Jimmy Graham17Ron Gronkowski10Vernon Davis0
Titans D/ST3649ers D/ST11Packers D/ST-5
Blair Walsh15Stephen Gostkowski4Nate Kaeding0
222 91 13

Finally, here are some graphs that show how fantasy point totals have changed over time.

The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards The Deadspin 2012-2013 Fantasy Football Awards

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