America's most popular sport kicks off in a few weeks. High school football? .....no. College football....no. The NFL......yes...and no.
I'm talking about Fantasy Football. Yes Fantasy Fooball. It gives millions of people of all ages the opportunity to vicariously feel the thrill of victory each Sunday....or conversely suffer the agony of defeat.
For those unfamiliar with the hobby (addiction), Fantasy football allows you to compete against other owners (lost souls). You draft skill players, a kicker, and a defense. Then you pile up points for touchdowns, field goals and extra points. Some leagues also give you points for stats, but you have to be an accountant to figure out the scores.
A warning up front. If you are passionate about a favorite NFL team, DO NOT get involved in Fantasy Football. It will ruin your enjoyment of the real NFL season. Unless you draft all your favorite team's players (unlikely and unwise), you will eventually find yourself rooting AGAINST your beloved team. Don't believe me? Well your fantasy QB is in the red zone in the final 2 minutes. He's flushed out of the pocket by your favorite REAL team's defense...takes off and scores the game winning touchdown. Your favorite REAL team has just suffered a crushing defeat. But you leap off your couch pumping your fist because your Wood County Woodchucks just won and YOU took over first place in your division!
Don't believe me....we've all been there.
The Fantasy Football season is divided into 3 parts. The Draft. The Regular Season. The Playoffs.
It can be a party....or a never ending night of humiliation if you haven't done your homework before hand. The early rounds are easy. Its like shopping at the deli. " Gimme a pound of Peyton Manning with a side of Plaxico Burress please!) And while it is a party, friends don't let friends draft drunk? A clear mind makes for a clear conscience at the end of the night
An important bit of draft etiquette. DO NOT LAUGH at a fellow league owner's draft choce. Even if he uses his first round pick on the Atlanta Falcons defense....or a player who just had season ending knee surgery the week before.
The Regular Season
The regular season....or as I like call it "14 weeks of Second Guessing Sundays".
Okay, you 've drafted your team, You've got 15 positions on your roster. The only problem is that you can only start 8 positions. So when the quarterback you started throws up a goose egg, your backup QB throw for 3 TDs and runs for another. Then the following week your NEW starting quarterback looks like Ryan Leaf, while the guy you just benched does his Peyton Manning impression.
Or the guy you cut loose the week before, becomes a reincarnation of Jim Brown....for a rival owner who just snagged him up.
I don't know, I've never made it that far.
But say YOU do make it to he Fantasy League Super BowL. It's the final week of the NFL regular season. That means your "Go to Guys" are going to the bench after the first quarter, so the can rest up for the playoffs.
So your Fantasy Football League Championshp is decided by mediocre players on mediocre teams just playing out the string. But hey, who says life is fair...even in the Fantasy world?
Once the season is done, you have to turn the page ...and gear up for your Arena Football Fantasy League team in the spring...but thats the subject of another blog.