Can you smell that? It’s the scent of victory, of determination, and of reward. It’s the sweet aroma of promise mixed in with the allure of a blank slate. It’s the best part of the fantasy football season: the playoffs.
They are fast approaching in many leagues, or, as is the case in my 16-team PPR league, here already. No matter what type of league you play in, the playoffs are an exciting time to put forward your best roster, cross your fingers, and pray that your months of research, trading, and plotting will pay off in a two/three game winning streak to take home the crown.
Personally, ever since I joined Fantasy Sharks last year, this time of the year has become even more fun, as I am flooded with emails from readers who are nearing this hallowed ground. This allows me to not only provide advice and answer questions, but also see a great array of personalities. Some of my favorites:
The Cocky – “I’ve got this in the bag. My team has been rolling all year long. My competition? Puh-lease. The only competition I have is within my own head in deciding who among my amazing players I should start. Start polishing that trophy for me, turkeys.”
The Confidant – “It’s been a tough season, but thankfully, luckily, I have survived the massacres that have occurred at each position, handcuffed my most important running backs, and prepared for the postseason. I’ll certainly have a tough matchup no matter what my seed, but at this point what can you do? Put your best lineup out there and hope for the best.”
The Angry – “^@!#(@!&$5#*)@#^!@*&@!#%. What the $(@#!$^*#@&$ happened to my $#&$@)$&@)#*$&(@ season!?!?!?!?!?!?! NEVER. PLAYING. AGAIN.”
The Confused – “No idea how I won this week. I started __________ only because I had no other options and he went bananas. So now what? Is he an every week starter now? Ugh, I don’t know what to do. And what about __________? Is he as good as ____________? Or should I start _________________ instead? And my options on waivers are ________, ________, _________, __________, _________, ___________, or _________. Who would you choose??”
The Injury-Riddled – “Really??? I lose Gronkowski too? So far I’ve lost Le’Veon Bell, Jamaal Charles, Arian Foster, and Stevie Smith. How is this even possible? I swear I must have done something in another life to deserve this luck…”
The Apathetic – “Whatever. Team sucks. I suck. Go Browns.”
Secret Fantasy Consultation Update
For her first season in a fantasy football league, there have been many a tough lesson learned. From dealing with the myriad of injuries at all positions, to the unpredictability of the tight end position, each week seems to bring with it a new painful reminder of just how fickle the game of fantasy can be.
Case in point – She goes into Monday night’s game down 12. Her opponent is done, out of players and she has just one remaining: Justin Tucker, the Baltimore Ravens kicker. Now, on the year, Tucker has been averaging around 10 fantasy points per game, which, if he holds to that, would give her the L for the week. But there were several things working in her favor as we headed into Monday Night, including both the sieve-like Browns defense and the replacement offensive players for the Ravens potentially not being able to score touchdowns, leading to more FGs. Simply put, 13 points wasn’t a lay-up, but it wasn’t a full-court heave at the buzzer either.
So the game proceeds and Tucker is having a nice, if unspectacular night. A couple FGs and extra points and she goes into the fourth quarter needing only a chip shot FG to win the game.
For those who watched, you know what happens next. For those who didn’t, let’s just say it was ugly. Schaub did Schaub and threw an interception with the Ravens having a chance, the Browns’ kicker played like a Cleveland Brown and had his attempt blocked and run back for a touchdown, sinking the possibility of an overtime field goal and sending her to yet another close loss.
What can you do? Dat’s fantasy, yo.
Random Football-Related Nonsense: Part I
Closed captioning this past weekend called Eli Manning, “Eli Man Penguin Boy.”
Random Football-Related Nonsense: Part II
Went to a Steelers-Seahawks’ watch party this past weekend with my Mom. I, of course, wore a Russell Wilson jersey and she asked if I had any Steelers jerseys she could borrow and wear. Not being a big Steelers’ fan, I don’t have many, but due to my keeper love shown to Markus Wheaton a few years back, I happened to have one of his jerseys in my collection.
She wore it, and he had the game of his life, amassing 9 catches, 201 yards, and one touchdown.
She’s been invited back to every Steelers’ watch party the rest of the year.