Sandwiched between the end of my summer baseball season and the start of my fall baseball season (I coach A LOT I know) is one of my favorite events of the year… our annual fantasy football draft. I firmly believe there is little better in fantasy sports life than a live fantasy draft. For the past four years our football league has found a way around marriage duties, work responsibilities and the birth of many a baby to meet in person and draft our favorite fantasy guys. Never a dull moment, these drafts lead to trash-talked seasons, unpredictable winners and usually a few frustrating Sunday’s watching a random Buffalo Bills game screaming at some third-string wideout to “break an f-in tackle dammit.”

And I love it.

Maybe it is because we play for cash and I have found a way to successfully bring home the pot a few times, including last season, but I love fantasy football. Like Matthew Berry love it. Like re-design my Sunday mornings to spew through podcast details for the edge that will help me squeak out an extra .7 points and survive another week love it. I might need medication… or Dez Bryant to just stay healthy… whatever I love the competition that is fantasy football.

Week 2 IR... Say it Ain't So Jamaal

This year, like your quarterback carrying it in for a touchdown, we added something everyone loves about a fantasy league, keepers. While we are only keeping two guys next season, from your draft day strategy, to a torn-ACL finished campaign, deciding not only about how to win this year, but also how to handle future roster decisions plays into our football managing responsibilities.  Draft pick trades, keeper players, and a chance to win your cash back with the highest accumulated points during the season makes this fantasy football year like chocolate and peanut butter, the perfect combination of all that is awesome.

And did I mention I. Love. It.

With the championship game long over in our league, writing the reminder of this blog is like watching a Kardashian TV series, (I’m on to you guys. You will only stay married 72 days, who cares if you have a “fight”), but even knowing the outcome (I finish third), I still love talking about the idea that we compete in this Internet sport like puppies competing for dinner at the pet store.

Or at least I thought we did, until the 2011 winner of our beloved Fantasy Football world (aptly named “The Retard Show“) won our money by making two waiver wire moves the entire year. Two. That includes bye weeks where many times he did not start a full lineup. He started Dallas Clark, a player who rarely had an impact when he played this year, in both the semi-final and championship game. Clark was inactive for both games. Now, give him credit, he drafted MJD in round one, Drew Brees round two and Bradshaw and Wallace in the following rounds. His best find turned out to be Reggie Bush, a round 9 selection that carried him through Week 16 of our season and aided his final playoff run.

So while most of my Retard League boys watch Matthew Berry like Grandparents watch the Wheel, our league proved that all the statistical love in the world does not always equal fantasy success. In fact, I am fairly certain it proves we all need is a little luck in our fantasy lives if we want to win cash. And while knowing those facts will not change the hours of ESPN fantasy bliss that I personally enjoy more than ARod loves to gamble, I do hope for a little luck my way when the fantasy baseball season starts this March.

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