By the conclusion of last fall’s fantasy football season, I thought I probably wouldn’t bother playing again. And then, just like the year before, a couple of invitations came around in August, and I caved in, dragged, kicking and fighting, into two competitive leagues. Next year at this time, the NFL may well be in the midst of a lockout, which doesn’t bode well for fantasy football. Also, these are low-stakes leagues insofar as there is no money involved. Not much on the line here: disembarrassment plus a few minutes of time and attention each week. Right? Right.
The first is an eight-team league; the second is a twelve-team league. By some stroke of fantastic luck, I scored the number one pick in both leagues this year. Rosters look like this:
Team Oblivion (eight-team league, Facebook) QB Phillip Rivers SD RB Chris Johnson TEN RB Steven Jackson STL WR DeSean Jackson PHI WR Calvin Johnson DET WR Dwayne Bowe KC TE Brent Celek PHI K Stephen Gostkowski NE D Baltimore Ravens B Jay Cutler, QB CHI B Jahvid Best, RB DET B Ronnie Brown, RB MIA B Mike Wallace, WR PIT B Mike Sims-Walker, WR JAC
Ypsilanti Juggernauti (twelve-team league, NFL.com) QB Joe Flacco BAL RB Chris Johnson TEN RB Deangelo Williams CAR WR Roddy White ATL WR Malcolm Floyd SD W/R Ronnie Brown MIA TE Jason Witten DAL K Dan Carpenter MIA D San Francisco 49ers B Greg Olsen, TE CHI B Chad Henne, QB MIA B Dez Bryant, WR DAL B Eddie Royal, WR DEN B Nate Burleson, WR DET B Davonne Bess, WR MIA
Obviously the pool of players to choose from was somewhat more diluted by the late rounds of the twelve-team draft. The second team doesn’t have an established, elite quarterback. Who knows how the 49ers defense will be this year (even in a weaker-than-most division)? And there’s not much depth at the RB position. I may be able to cover for this because the second league has a WR/RB flex slot. Even so, if Chris Johnson or Ronnie Brown was to get hurt, both teams would falter. I don’t know whether either team will contend in its respective league. That’s contingent upon so many different factors between now and December. But I do think the drafts went okay. Just two regrets I can recall: in the smaller league, choosing the Ravens D as early as I did (a ran-out-of-time pick) and, in the bigger of the two leagues, missing my chance at Colts RB Donald Brown.