Fantasy Football Files: Halfway Through, Says the Optimist

Last week was Week 8 of the fantasy season. That means in pretty much all leagues, you’re halfway through the season and that’s the glass is half full (of AJ Green and David Johnson shares) version.

Insert Moment of Zen with me sneaking into a double kitty nap sandwich

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One of my weekly fantasy chores includes setting my lineup on Tuesday morning. I get to see exactly where I need roster help this week, and if I’m paying attention, the next two or three as well. My favorite leagues are either deep or best ball. This is what I’ve discovered this year. When I have limitations, I chafe.

Zealots 34: Yup, this is year 11 of the endeavor and I’m in a weird holding pattern. I had five rookie draft picks this year (picks 4 and 6 included) and they’ve scored exactly zero points in my starting lineup. I failed to start Corey Coleman the week before his broken hand and this week I started Matt Asiata instead of “not the fuzzy kind” handcuff Derrick Henry. Jaylon Smith’s living on IR, Cardele Jones will be “the guy I drafted instead of Dak Prescott” and Daniel Braverman didn’t even make the Bears team after an avalanche of injuries. I went from playoff contender to man I hope I lose in about four weeks. Naturally at 1-6 I pulled off a comeback win on the wings of that awful Bears/Vikings game to finish out the slate.

I want to ‘rebuild’ but this isn’t much of a trading league. I hoped to turn such late-career studs as Michael Crabtree and DeMarco Murray into younger players or draft picks but I haven’t taken the time to investigate. The best offer I’ve received is a second-rounder for Crabby.

The team isn’t bad but my blind spot is IDP. I’ve been spot-starting at DL and DB all year and doing about as good a job of it as the Jacksonville offense. Sadly my two straight 1.04 picks, Kevin White and Corey Coleman, have been goose egg city and man do I wish I sold high on Coleman. Maybe Tyler Lockett as well. My Eddie Lacy/Demaryius Thomas for Mike Evans deal has been a disaster. The top three teams in the league are set for a while so I’m not sure how to play this. In this league I’m a Browns fan blind to other sports.

Scott Fish Bowl

Things have turned up for Jennifer Aniston. She’s on every other commercial and may be a “leading woman” only in terms of appearing in the grocery tabloids, but my team in this division is looking pretty. I’m 5-3, and this is one evenly matched division with 11 of 12 teams between 5-3 and 3-5, and the one 2-6 team is ahead of five other teams in points. I had to hold off the mighty Mike Tagliere to win, with his Jay Cutler and Jordan Howard coming less than five points short of the win. Of the five 5-3 teams I’m number 3, so I’m solidly in the money. I have one dollar left of free agent bucks.

Good picks: Zeke at 1.02, and while my four tight ends in the first nine picks strategy hasn’t blown away the competition it means my later round WRs can compete for attention. I did well in free agency, picking up Dak, Tyrell Williams, J.J. Nelson, and Rob Kelley. If I get a healthy Doug Martin back for the home stretch, and Dak holds onto that starting gig, I’m a playoff team and more. This is a really fun and unique league and you know the competition is top-notch and more important, engaged.

The League of Laws

When you are the Commish of a new league and after 8 weeks you have a two-game lead, it’s key that I stacked the deck in my favor. A slightly more accurate narrative is I went on a winning streak putting up barely enough to win totals and the past two weeks have put up my second and third highest scores of the season. I’m streaming QB, D, and K like a good boy and it’s worked except when I picked up Trevor freaking Siemian. Nobody’s going to miss spelling that name. I beat my three top rivals from the local home league in a row, including a 1.18-point nailbiter over my dad that was clinched when Eli failed to get sacked by the Vikings. I assume the mighty murderer’s row of opponents I’ll face are paying more attention to their other leagues.

A deep league means nearly zero at RB and WR on waivers and I think that’s swell. I picked up Booker after he was dropped and that might save my season. I’m not sure if I can survive with Crowell and Gore having 40-yard rushing days salvaged by a TD. Receivers are stupid deep with AJ, Larry Fitz, Michael Thomas, Donte Moncrief, and oh yeah, Gronk + Bennett. Six of my eight bench spots are on a bye.

The Best Ball Game

King of the Hill D – Velociraptor

After roaring out to a 100-point lead three weeks in, my team started taking in water. I’m up 65 points which is great (Mr. Scott Fish is the runner-up) but I bet I slip a bit this week considering that my only active RB in Week 9 is Mark Ingram. I have Bernard/Hill/Howard on bye, DeAngelo Williams and Darren McFadden on ouch, and CJ Spiller on not on an NFL team. I also have only Cameron Brate at TE. Drew Brees has been worth the third-round pick as my QB1 and I’m surviving with Tannehill as my QB2 now that Blaine Gabbert’s been benched. It’s tough to feel too confident when the team behind me has Brady/A-Rod/Jay Ajayi, David Johnson, Eddie Lacy (whew), and Josh Gordon (double whew).

MFL10 and 25 haul

I invested $120 in my MFL 10 and MFL25 leagues and I’m on pace for my worst year ever. I’m in 4th place in one MFL25 and the rest are dead meat. Because it’s fun to be the half-empty guy every once in a while, here’s my worst team, MFL25 league #46647 which sadly is the one MFL25 I joined with Sharona (she’s killing me). I’m in 12th place and the 11th place team is 185 points ahead of me. Yeah, I’m more than 20 points a week behind the second to worst team in the league. Out of my first ten draft picks, the #3 scorer is Michael Floyd. I took Keenan Allen, Jeremy Maclin, Floyd, and Lockett with consecutive picks. I made fun of the guy who took Dak in the 18th round (this was pre-Romo injury) and guess who’s in 11th place.

I spent an entire weekend at a beach and one subsequent weekend getting sick from too much beach (apparently) and oddly have not tried a new beer in a few weeks. I’ll have to up my game there. To catch up for missing Halloween, I have a couple of special pumpkin beers to try next weekend.

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