Tyler Thigpen: Fantasy Pick o’ the Week

Gretz is right: Thigpen is a hot commodity these days, #1 for the week in waiver wire pickups.

Why? Because he is out-playing more heralded, more experienced QBs.  He outplayed Favre, then outplayed Garcia, and last week outplayed Rivers.  He just turned in the best performance by a Chiefs’ QB in two years.

The thing is, I don’t give two rat’s farts about Fantasy Football.

What is more important to me is that in his 2nd, 3rd, and 4th NFL start, he delivered game-winning performances.  The only thing that kept us winless in those games is our defense was too young and too injured to prevent 4th quarter scores by the opponent.

We’ll start winning those soon, as we move into the easier half of our schedule.

Thigpen is our QBOTF.  He’ll have a bad day someday, and everyone will say, “See? We knew he wasn’t good enough.” But that’s just typical 2nd-guessing blather.  Thigpen has done enough with so little experience that I know he will be solid even if he has slumps.  He has shown awareness to hit the hot read in blitzes, accuracy to put the ball not only where only the receiver can get it, but where the receiver can keep stride and get yards after the catch.  He’s got zip to get the ball to the destination even when the opportunity is closing, the touch to put the ball over a leaping defender, the strength to get it way downfield, but doesn’t seem to ever throw so hard to increase the difficulty.  I’ve seen less tipped/caromed passes from Thigpen than from most starting NFL QBs, but that’s just an impression, not any statisical reality, m’kay?  The bottom line is he shows more skills than most starting NFL QBs, shows sufficient mental abilities equal to at least the average NFL QB, and lacks only experience to be a dang good QB.  He’s already shown the ability to get a TD when we need a score late in the game (against the Chargers).

Of course, there is no way to know when/where someone will peak.  This might be as good as he gets, meaning: great stats and streaky performance, but can go cold for several possessions at a time.  But honestly, what he’s shown after just 7 NFL games and 4 starts, I think he has the potential to increase his consistency and make the pro-bowl several time during his career.  To me, the biggest unknown is if he can still play this well and win in the playoffs.  There is a significant difference between playing a playoff-caliber team in the regular season, and then meeting that same defense in the playoffs when the stakes are far, far higher.

But that’s something to worry about after Thigpen has another 23 (or so) more games under his belt.


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