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DIARY OF A FANTASY VIRGIN: Week 11

Week 11 in the NFL and we have to genuinely thank the NFL for the entertainment. We also have to thank the Masters Tournament organizers for putting on an event that was canceled in March. As Covid-19 cases along with hospitalizations creep up across the lower 48, we are reminded that the NFL is trying to do the unthinkable and get through the year. It has and it has been unblemished for the most part. But the weather is forcing teams to hunker down. Did you see that monsoon in New England at the end of the game with Baltimore? How can you possibly score when it was raining as hard as I have ever seen in a National Football League game?

Speaking of weather, the leaf blowers are out in force in New England. The all too familiar whine of the apparatus fills the Covid-19 quarantine silence with a steadfast determination that we will keep up our old traditions. Heck, while we are mostly quarantined we might as well have a lawn free of leaves gosh darn it and so it happens. The sound is less annoying and refreshing this year. It is time to talk about the march to the fantasy football playoffs. A little stress anyone?

How Do You Spell Stress? F-A-N-T-A-S-Y F-O-O-T-B-A-L-L

It is go-time for fantasy football owners. If you have been leading the whole season you are a three-game losing streak away from missing the playoffs. If you are behind, the right pickup may catapult you into a winning streak that secures you the fantasy football championship. These are tense times for fantasy football owners and NFL football teams. Just think of Buffalo and Baltimore this week and the pressure to win on them. Last week saw eight games decided by one score or less. How will I match up? Let me just say I was dreaming about 2019.

It Is Not 2019 Virginator

For the first time since Week 1, I had in my lineup a somewhat healthy quarterback in Drew Brees and a ready to go Sean Payton first option wide receiver Michael Thomas. For those unfamiliar with the NFL game, the offense flows through a primary receiver and in the New Orleans Payton offensive scheme, no less than 17 plays will be designated for the primary receiver. First.. quarterback Drew Brees has only 38 passing yards at some point in the second quarter. Then.. quarterback Drew Brees is smooshed and out for the game. All I needed was a 24-point performance from Brees and a 19-point performance by Michael Thomas and I would have won. It did not happen and now my quarterback is out for three weeks and Michael Thomas is well, all I can say is that like real life, it is not 2019 anymore. I will need to regroup and find a path to victory. It will be a bumpy ride just like the reports by astronauts referring to the second stage dragon booster on the Falcon 9 rocket.. hold on to your hats!

Week 11 is dedicated to the local New England football team.

Dear Diary

Being from New England means if you are a sports fan, all NFL roads and conversations lead to the New England Patriots. Like all other teams, we get the inside scoop on what coach Bill Belichick is doing or what he is not doing. In the previous 19 years or so I feel as though the team was always wrongly maligned by the “fanboys” calling local sports radio shows from the cellar of their parent’s home. The wailing and gnashing of teeth seemed really strange considering they had been to nine Super Bowls in those previous 19 years and won six of them. But all with one quarterback by the name of Tom Brady.

Fast forward to 2020 and not only is Covid-19 here but Tom Brady has left the building for greener pastures in Tampa Bay. The team as it constitutes now is actually worthy of the comments from the previous 19 seasons. Will you find this amongst the talk shows? Absolutely! But does it seem hollow? It probably is not hollow but strange because the description meets the product on the field.

New England going into Week 11 has a two-game winning streak to get to 4-5. That has never been written about in my Week 11 article about the Patriots. Usually this time of year, it is a forewarning to the rest of the league that while they were standing still, the team was figuring things out and accelerating toward another Super Bowl. Hey, I was only right nine out of 19 times. Last year’s team actually started getting worse after beginning the season 8-0. Oh, the humanity!

I will repeat what was said about the 9-1 Patriots from last year’s Week 11 article. How many of these stick this year?

  • They cannot run the ball
    • Sort of
  • They have no tight ends
    • Yes
  • They have no offensive line
    • Yes
  • They have no passing game
    • Yes
  • They have a great defense
    • Sort of
  • They have no kicker
    • No on this one
  • They have no weapons for Tom Brady … Cam Newton now
    • Yes
  • They have played no talented opponents yet
    • No on this one

The list is the same and roughly six of them are not that far off. Heading into Week 11 last year, the Patriots were spoken about like this and they were 9-1. This is a far cry from the current 4-5.

I wonder if anyone else is paying attention.

Stay vigilant!

Master D.

Tim Davoll can now be reached at tdavoll@fantasysharks.com and welcomes your opinions on the “Diary of a Fantasy Virgin” articles.

About Tim Davoll

Author of the Weekly Series "Diary of a Fantasy Virgin" since opening day of FantasySharks.com. That particular date? It was September 12, 2002 when my first article was published on this site. It has been a great ride ever since.