Watching the NFL without playing Fantasy Football League is liberating
I did not do any research before sitting down to write this article. Why? Because it’s about the fact that I’m not playing fantasy football in 2021.
In other words, no research was necessary.
I think I was 20 the last time I wasn’t in a fantasy football league. I was pretty green when I started playing fantasy football; oh sure i knew a lot about the nfl but i had no idea that, for example, you shouldn’t draft a kicker in the fourth round. What about quarters? I always found myself with a lot of good names in the early days of my fantasy football days. As for the ball carriers? Not really. I had no idea how important these guys were at first.
There was the one time I ended up with the second overall pick in my 2004 fantasy football draft. I picked running back LaDainian Tomlinson of the San Diego Chargers. Not bad is not it ? You’d think, but although Tomlinson had his usual Pro Bowl season in 2004, he got off to a rather slow start, at least for him. Or, maybe it was just a slow start for my slow start team. Maybe that’s why my brother convinced me to trade him Tomlinson for a bunch of other players. Did it help? Nope. I think it helped him.
Nothing really helped me do anything, even from afar, approaching the respectable in my early years of fantasy football. The one time I made the playoffs, I managed to knock my brother out of the wild card – yes, the same one that “stole” Tomlinson from me. Unfortunately, I was shot in the next round.
My incompetence continued for years after that one playoff appearance. That’s right, I would join a league every year, give someone my league fees, and then I wouldn’t get a dime back at the end of the year.
In fact, a dime would have been welcome after all the nothings I received each January.
Anyway, once I started writing about the Steelers regularly, it filled the void and satisfied that urge to be a part of something that I wasn’t really a part of. After that, I didn’t really care about fantasy football anymore. I still played. Every year someone would ask me to join their league (s) and I would. I would go to Primanti Bros. for the live draft or connect to my laptop for the virtual. However, my heart was not really there anymore.
Of course, I managed to win my league as a co-owner of a team with my uncle in 2018, and it was definitely a great feeling. It was fun making money for a change and not giving it away. But I was only there for the ride, much like Daniel Sepulveda in those last two Steelers Super Bowl appearances (don’t offend him). In fact, I think my biggest contribution came on draft night when I said to my uncle, “I heard a guy on the radio say he thinks Patrick Mahomes is going to have a year off.
In fact, it was a nice pouch in a Michael Scott from Office sort of, but I didn’t really mean to do it.
As usual, I was invited to join several leagues for the 2021 season. The former me would have accepted these requests for fear of disappointing someone. But this year, I had the courage to say, “No, Biff, you’re getting rid of my grocery money.”
It’s been so glorious, so liberating, so liberating. I don’t have to worry about those lingering injuries that always lead to game time decisions that can really screw you up if you don’t have a device handy. I don’t have to fight the Steelers, although it never really bothered me; after all, that opposing player is still going to score points, so you might as well take advantage of them.
Good luck with your fantasy football team this year, but don’t ask me to join your league. I gave to the office.