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News-Herald Assistant Sports Editor Kevin Kleps doesn’t just write headlines and stories. He also checks on his fantasy sports teams. A lot. See if the moves and news from the world of sports affect your fantasy teams.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Fantasy football: Can you take Michael Vick in Round 1?

When I ranked the top 12 players in fantasy football in a News-Herald column not long after the lockout ended, I placed Eagles quarterback Michael Vick ninth.

As fate -- or cruel luck -- would have it, I landed the ninth pick in a random draw for the fantasy league in which I take the most pride. (I'm as goofy about fantasy as the most addicted guy or gal you know, but I want to win this league more than any other because of the amount of family who participate. And what is more fun than taking money from your brothers, even as you approach 40?)

Now I'm asking myself: Can I take Vick ninth overall? Can I pass on a running back, a draft route I select in the first round 99 times out of 100?

The short answer is no. The long answer is I'm confident I won't have to make that choice, because Vick is such a tempting choice he probably will be long gone before No. 9, since passing touchdowns also count as six points in this league.

In what amounted to 11 games of work last season, Vick threw for 3,018 yards and 21 touchdowns, and he ran for 676 yards for nine TDs.

That's 30 total TDs in about 44 quarters of work.

The bad: It was his first 3,000-yard passing season, and the first time he had more than 20 touchdown passes.

We know Vick will put up numbers, and if he stays healthy, he will be among the top scorers in a fantasy league regardless of format.

Will he stay healthy? Can you take that risk in the first round?

As much as I like what Vick could bring to my fake team, I'm hoping I don't have to make the decision.

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