I’m relatively new to the fantasy sporting game, but this is what I’ve figured out so far: 1) winning is awesome and 2) playing in a fantasy league is a totally bizarro way to experience a sporting season. (Yes, that’s just the first ground-breaking observation I’m about to lay on you. Buckle up.)
Last year, my first foray into football fantasy, I finished 8th out of 12 in my office’s fantasy football league, with a record of 6-7-0. I had no idea what I was doing, but I was happy with any wins that I got.
As I write this, my record is 4-0 for the season, though I fear that my streak will come to an end this week. I am currently No. 1 in my office fantasy football league and this is pretty much the most absurd thing. Mostly because I am the lamest fantasy football league owner ever. I’m not making any sort of anti-feminist commentary here; I’m just talking about me, and how I deal with the very complex feelings that go along with playing fantasy football.
Case in point: I drafted Peyton Manning in my second round. He was very, very good to me on Game 1, Day 1, Week 1 of this season. And he’s been good to me ever since. I feel like I owe my standing to him. But do you think that, when I woke up on the Friday after Peyton tied the NFL record of 7 TD passes in a game, my first reaction was, “F*CK YEAH PEYTON! THROWING IT LIKE A BOSS! PLAYA GONNA PLAY!”?
(I just heard how ridiculous those words sound coming out of my mouth. I’m happy to re-enact upon request.)
Nope. My exact words were: “Awwww Peyton! Way to go! I, like, want to send him flowers!”
I’m not even joking. My first instinct was to send Peyton Manning flowers.
I have developed a weekly fantasy football ritual. Every Tuesday morning, I take a screen shot of the current standings, as I sit on top, and then text my brother “STILL #1!” Is this totally lame? You betcha. But every player on my team has become close to my heart. My drafting strategy was doing a lot of research, little of which I understood, and then selecting players in a panic and in vain hope that I was choosing well. But now that they’re Team Puck Bunny, I want to hug every one of them.
(Actual text conversation)
For me, the hardest part of playing the fantasy points game is that you’re inevitably rooting for at least 8 players and 1 team to perform below expectation that week. Let’s say you’re playing against Wes Welker, and he suddenly starts sucking at catching, you’re super happy. But do you stop to think about what happens to Wes Welker if he plays a mediocre game? He probably gets yelled at, guys. Shouldn’t we feel a little bit sorry that this guy has failed to do the one thing he needed to do this week?
Maybe not. I Googled Wes Welker’s wife and she’s pretty hot, so my sympathy only extends so far.
I can’t participate yet in the smack talk game because I’m still learning and I would feel badly making do by indiscriminately insulting these players’ mothers. So, apologies to my fellow fantasy football league owners for maybe not being the most engaging person to play against. But I’m having lots of fun.
And PS, I’m still looking for Peyton Manning’s favourite flower. The Internet doesn’t know the answer, and I’m no fool — my #1 status is basically all him. Thanks, Peyton!!!