"As the great "LT" recently announced his retirement, I decided to wipe the dust off my bifocals and abacus, and take a look at the pure awesomeness of LaDainian Tomlinson, the fantasy football running back."
The name OrangeBru does not mean that Jeff Brubach has a thing for citrusy beers. He is an alum of Syracuse University, which I am told still fields a football team. Jeff writes for the fantastic The Fake Football site.
All fantasy writers name-dropped will get a link to their Twitter feed. We’ll keep with the theme of my questions/comments in Titan blue and Jeff’s in not blue.
How did you get into fantasy football writing?
Fantasy writing was always something I wanted to get involved with, and as a huge fan of Razzball, I jumped at the chance to compete in Razzball’s "Next Great Fantasy Football Writer" contest last summer. I didn’t win it, but good old Chet was nice enough to let me stick around anyway. [Zach note: That contest was great and got some of the youngsters a foothold in the industry.]
What’s it like working with Chet_G at The Fake Football? Did he give you some of the HGH he uses so he can never sleep and write 45 fantasy articles an hour?
Working with Chet is awesome. Besides being a fantastic writer, he is a great dude and has been extremely kind in helping me get involved in the fantasy world. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better person to look up to in this industry and I couldn’t be more thankful to work with him. I’m still trying to find out his secret to living on 27 minutes of sleep a night, but I haven’t gotten it out of him yet.
Tell me about your real-life NFL rooting interests.
I was born and raised in the Seattle/Tacoma area, so naturally I root for the Seahawks (save the follow up question, I am NOT done crying about Super Bowl XL). I’m really looking forward to watching their defense this season, which should be pretty solid, especially at home. Also, Century Link Field is an outstanding venue to watch a game, and I highly recommend visiting fans make the push to Seattle if they get the chance.
Should we officially mourn the passing of the 300-carry running back? I see that your projections have two 300-carry guys for this year.
[Zach note: Read Jeff's RB projections.] Ya, the projection of carries is tough, but I really think that NFL teams are beginning to come to the realization that the life of a running back is EXTREMELY short. Just this offseason, teams (Eagles/Falcons) have publicly announced plans to reduce carries of their main back, and a large chunk of the NFL’s best ball carriers (DMC, Charles, AP, Forte, etc..) are coming off injury and have other quality backs to ease their workloads. I think this is why you will see solo backs like Mathews and Richardson continue to climb the ADP charts this summer.
Where do you live?
I recently relocated from the Los Angeles area to my original hometown, which is about 30 miles south of Seattle.
Tell me about your day job.
My day (and sometimes night) job is in the container shipping industry. I work in operations for a container terminal, where we plan how the containers load/discharge the ships and manage the labor union that does the work. It’s sort of like an airport, but instead of planes and people, we deal with ships and giant steel rectangles.
Are you in the kind of softball league where you have to chug a beer for every base, or are you in the other kind?
I play a bit more competitive type softball, but there are definitely tons of beers involved on the weekends when we play. Fortunately, I’m friends with some great athletes, so they just hide me in right field and let me hit.
From Rummy: One NFL player mano-a-mano, in an MMA style match…who could you take?
This one is easy. I immediately thought of an NFL player I would enjoy pummeling, and the fact that I have a couple inches and about 30 lbs (*cough*) on him doesn’t hurt either. My choice for an MMA battle royale would have to be DeSean Jackson. Jackson’s propensity for jogging out routes and shying away from contact over the middle makes me think I might have a shot. Joe Rogan would definitely give me the edge in the fight, as my big noggin can take some serious punishment. Brubach by knockout in the 2nd round!!! [Zach note: I would have "challenged" a punter instead.]
The spouse question: Does your wife/gf/sig other have any issues with your obsession?
My fiancé is generally alright with the amount of football on our television, and she does like watching the Seahawks. As long as I don’t protest the endless episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress” and “American Idol” during the week, she doesn’t bug me on Sundays too much.
Football or sex: which do you think of more?
On Sundays during football season between 10am-4pm pacific standard time, the answer is football. Any other time, the answer is sex.
Where are you on the usual football Sunday? I assume there’s a man cave.
My football Sundays generally consist of four main ingredients: My tv, my laptop, my dog by my side, and whatever beers are leftover in my fridge from the weekend. Often times my buds from my main league will lounge their hung over carcasses around my living room on Sunday mornings so we can make fun of each other’s teams in person.
Do you have long-term goals with your fantasy football writing?
Being so new on the scene, I haven’t put a lot of thought into any long-term goals. I am extremely happy where I’m at and am excited about working to make The Fake Football as successful as possible. I guess I just aspire to become a quality writer like those that I respect and enjoy reading.
Tell me about a hobby/interest outside of football.
During the spring and summer months (July and August in the Seattle), I enjoy hitting the golf course with my old man. During the winter, I don’t miss a single Syracuse basketball game. ‘Cuse hoops may be the only thing that rivals my obsession with fantasy football.
How has Twitter changed the way you follow fantasy and football in general?
Twitter really is an amazing asset to fantasy players. Next to the live box scores of my fantasy matchups, Twitter is something I can’t live without on Sundays. The way you can find local information from NFL beat writers during games is extremely helpful. I really used to hate noticing one of my players on the sidelines and trying to figure out why he was out. Now, that information is immediately available. The humor aspect of Twitter can make Sundays more enjoyable as well.
Which fantasy writers are on your must-read list?
I always check out my man Chet’s stuff, and I am a big fan of anything from the Rotoworld and Yahoo crews. I make a point of devouring Evan Silva’s matchups article every week during the season…that thing is awesome. I always try to stay up on the tweets from the 2MugsFF crew as well. In a world full of Twitter jokesters, my homeboy Rumford Johnny definitely leads the league in laughs per tweet ratio.
Tell me about any plugs that you’d like. Podcasts, sites that you write for, expert leagues, anything.
Thanks to Jeff for answering my questions.