REPOST—Fantasy Football Forever
I’m really looking forward to fall, which is weird because my favorite season has always been summer. I normally get a little sad at the end of August thinking I have to wait 8 months to see live girls in bikinis again. Am I getting old? Maybe, but I think it’s a combination of my age and my full-blown fantasy football addiction. Football has always been something I look forward too but never was it an overwhelming disease that cripples my Sundays like a man with spina bifida trying to climb a ladder. With the inception of the red-zone channel and personal devices becoming more intuitive this has become an intervention-worthy problem. Not only is this a predicament for men but the women that love us also suffer greatly. Hopefully my take on FF will help ease the pain for those women that get ignored like a redheaded stepchild on Sundays.
You can track my disease all the way back to my childhood. My first introduction to gambling happened when my mom allowed me to participate in her company wide football pool. Why wouldn’t she think it was a good idea to include her children in the illegal gambling ring being held at her place of employment? It was a straight pick-em pool, 20 dollar entry fee, best record take all. To my surprise, I ended up taking first place out of 100 peeps. I guess you could say “The rest is history.”
Thanks mom for teaching me how to gamble at age 12. Surprised I’m not living the good life in my one room studio apartment in a Las Vegas gutter with my roommate Stanley.
Because of mothers responsible decision I now take part in a pick-em pool, suicide pool, two seasonal fantasy leagues and a hard-core dynasty league. My participation in these pools literally creates a FF command center in my basement every Sunday, impenetrable by any one with a vagina. I surround myself with laptops, televisions, cell phones, and remotes to keep myself updated on any sudden score change. My FF-Fortress of Solitude also requires a twelve-hour, empty caloried feeding frenzy of which I consume nothing but grease, carbs, meat, corn and hops. The only reason to get up is to drain the Purple-Helmeted Yogurt Thrower. The longer I sit in my filth consuming nothing but junk the quicker I start to lose my mind. One Sunday I discussed a potential conspiracy theory with a cheese doodle I found in the couch. Well hello Mr. Doodle. How’d you get under there? How long have you been hiding from me? Who sent you?
FF has become a multimillion-dollar industry that has turned men across the country into mindless drooling vegetables. Bottom-line, men look forward to Fantasy Football Sunday’s like women look forward to getting their hair did. For sixteen straight weeks we wake up on our holy day, run downstairs like its Christmas morning and turn on the pre-game show like Raymond Babbit getting ready for another episode of the Peoples Court.
One minute till Wapner.
Early August and the start of training camp is when the excitement seed gets planted for the upcoming season. We get to see the current draft class on the field, which causes us to start thinking about our potential keepers (in a dynasty format). When the seed roots and takes hold we start looking for a good resource to feed our enthusiasm. The Internet has become flooded with hoards of information making it a challenge to sift through and find something useful, therefore, we turn to the magazine to encompass valuable information. Does this magazine double as a security blanket? All I know is I wouldn’t go into battle without a shield.
Now normal magazines will run anywhere between 2-3 dollars were a FF magazine will run between 5-10 dollars ($15 in Canada). Men won’t bat an eyelash paying top dollar if we find exactly what we’re looking for. Relax ladies, this is our only outstanding FF expense since we play for the respect of our peers. I’m sure you assumed we wager money, but as gentlemen we accept nothing more than a handshake and/or trophy.
Now back to the magazine.
Every guy has different criteria when choosing his hand-held holy grail. Me personally, I pay extra for glossy paper and color pictures throughout (Makes me feel like I’m putting in the extra effort). Screw that black and white newsprint garbage. Nobody ever won a championship being cheap! Some standard requirements are as follows: a top 200 cheat-sheet, strong rookie evaluations, each position ranking and each position sleeper ranking.
Men will stand until our legs cramp looking for just the right combination of hints, tips and sleepers. A good comparison for this selection process is when you women go shopping for greeting cards. Finding just the right message can sometimes take a while but when found, it simply melts the heart. You know the one that makes you shed a tear right there in the store? Yeah, it’s just like that.
DRAFT DAY, HELL YEAH!!!!! The sun rises with a smile as men everywhere welcome this day with open arms and hug it like their grandmother. What’s not to love? All your work and preparation is about to pay off! A common strategy for a FF draft is having a first round target and a plethora of middle-to-late round sleepers in your back pocket. As long as you’ve done your homework the rest should fill in systematically. You should feel unstoppable heading to your draft. OH YEAH! I’m a high-speed, Coors Light silver-bullet train and nothing can derail me; my confidence is sky-high. I got this! I’ve been training all month for this day and when it’s my pick I’m going to FUCK-SHIT-UP! I get there a half hour early, grab a beer and a prime seat for the festivities. After everyone arrives and its greeted accordingly (depending on last years finishers) its down to business. The draft order is determined by the numbers in the hat routine. “Who wants to pick first?” “I do!” C‘mon pick number 1! I choose pick 7. FUCK! I didn’t prepare for pick 7.
It’s too early to take a quarterback and all the backs and receivers I’ve been targeting are gone. *Panic ensues*
“Give me Miles Austin” WHAT!? And just like that your day is ruined. NICE PICK ASSHOLE! THANKS FOR THE DONATION DOUCHE! Everyone knows Austin is a mid-to-late second rounder at best. You spend the rest of the day trying to rectify your mistake.
The rest of the draft moves rather quickly and is usually filled with friendly banter throughout. We like to repeat quotes at nauseam from commercials that we’ve seen over and over on our favorite sports station. This year between all the screams of “Championship” and “T.J. who’s your momma” I noticed we do something that is completely unorthodox in all non-gay males circles; we compliment each other. The more I analyzed this the more I realized it’s about the ONLY situation a group of 10-12 men will sit in a room and be supportive. “Ooooooooo nice handcuff!” or “Savvvvvvy value pick.” Of course as I proved earlier the compliments are intertwined with insults and sarcasm but we compliment each other nonetheless. Hmmmmmm, what other scenario has a group of men sitting together, drafting other men to achieve a high “scores” while showering each other with compliments?
You’ve checked your starting lineup 10-thousand times comparing matchups and stats. You’re still left with one receiver or running back dilemma that keeps you up at night. Whichever way you go it’s inevitably the wrong decision. The guy you start will have 2 receptions for 26 yards and the guy on your bench will blow up for 100 yards and two touchdowns. You vow to never sit your stud again, and all he does is suck balls for the rest of the year. The good news is, when you shit the bed, it’s always best to have an accident week one since you get the first pick on the waiver wire.
There’s one guy in every league that submits the most ridiculous trades ever. “Ill give you a six-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon and Chris Henry for Aaron Rodgers?” No? Okay I throw in Donnie Avery’s ACL? It’s always the same guy that sends you about 10 trade proposals on the same day. His tactic is to flood the market and see who bites, then take THAT interest and annoy you into submission. I’m not a trade master and unfortunately lost two leagues last year because of my boneheaded decisions.
In conclusion, I could go on forever but feel the need to stop here to protect myself from myself.
It’s only a matter of time before women jump on board with this phenomenon by starting a “Dancing with the Stars” or “American Idol” fantasy league.
I won my dynasty league last year by beating my twin brother in the championship game because he didn’t start Brent Celek. Loser. Is there anything sweeter? Actually, YES there is…He bet a future 2010 11th round pick that he lost in our head-to-head, mid-season match-up (that has since stirred a lot of controversy, thanks Scott (nice team)).
The cou’de gras, my brother called begging for his pick back. His tactics were as transparent as a wet t-shirt contest.
- Guilt trip-“Dude you won last year, you’re not really going to keep that pick are you?”
- Offer money-“How much for the pick back?”
- Desperation-“Is there anything I can do or say to get that pick back?”
- Reverse psychology-“Screw you man I don’t need you or your stupid pick anyway!”
He will never admit it, but losing the championship game will eat at him like a leech attached to his testicles.
The Grid Iron (keeper league): 1st The Grid Iron Guru
Glenside Pub: Did not make playoffs because of a horrible trade
Freight House: Came in third place because of another horrible trade
The Grid Iron (keeper league): 3rd Place
Glenside Pub: 1st Championship Bitches!
Freight House: 1st Championship Bitches! I drafted this team while driving and appropriately named my team “Drafting while Driving.
The Grid Iron (keeper league): TBA
Glenside Pub: TBA
Freight House: TBA