Come with me, and you’ll be in a world of pure football imagination.
Yes, now that the lockout is over and the babied millionaires have decided to get along with their billionaire owners, it’s time for the professional football season to begin and, with that, the realm of fantasy football.
Basically, it’s Dungeons and Dragons for sports fans (again, fan is short for fanatic).
You get to become the owner of your very own team (without the billions), drafting real NFL players to your ultimate team of superstars in order to show if you really know your football.
It’s a role playing game using real people as the characters. It’s a choose-your-own adventure based on the successes and failures of Tom Brady or Brandon Jacobs.
In short, it’s one of the most addicting things I have ever been involved in.
I started out as a fantasy baseball freak, but six months of trying to keep up with stats and injuries and who’s hot was just too much of an investment of time. In fantasy football, you can take the whole week off and spend a few minutes on a Saturday picking your lineup and setting your roster.
One of the best parts of the whole spectacle is the draft, a chance for everyone to look at and then belittle your football acumen.
(“You took a kicker in the third round? Why don’t you use your next pick on a cheerleading squad.”)
Then there are the mistakes that you make with your rosters. The first week of last season, I was in a family league with my wife and some of her siblings. She sat Houston Texans running back Arian Foster because she “had never heard of him.” Long story short, he finished with day with something like 250 rushing yards, five or six touchdowns, a few receptions (all worth points in the league), sold five cartons of popcorn and sang the National Anthem. He would have gained her almost 50-60 more points on a week where she lost be three.
Fantasy football also leads to the great sports morale debates. You see, I am a Giants fan, but I had Miles Austin of the Cowboys and a running back or two from the Eagles on my fantasy team. Do you root for your team (Giants) or “your team” (last year known as the Weakside Sackerz, this year known as the HeadBangin’ Collies in honor of Colts receiver Austin Collie and his two severe concussions suffered last season).
You can go to all of the experts for help with your fantasy team, but here is my advice:
Never pick your favorite players. Not too many points on a team made up of BYU alums John Beck (Redskins quarterback) or Max Hall (Cardinals backup quarterback), Harvey Unga (Bears second team running back) and Collie. It’s a case of your heart will not lead you to fantasy happiness.
Quarterbacks and running backs are like gold; kickers and defenses are like socks.
Remember, you will wake up one morning to hear that your top producer is out for the season. It’s just a fact.
By the way, if anyone wants into a fantasy league, go to the Valley News Facebook Page and post your interest. We have room for 19 teams right now and hope to have a fun season. You never know, we may also be able to get some “loot” for the winners.
So, good luck with your teams. Unless your playing against me.
Keith Lobdell is the editor of the Valley News. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org