The Obsession of Fantasy Football Ownership
Freelance Submission Posted 8/19 by Sandi L. Edmonds, Special to Footballguys.com
You don't have to go far to find out how psychologically unstable fantasy football
owners can be. Just ask the wives or husbands of those involved and you'll hear
more than you ever wanted to know!! It's almost as though we have split personalities
(I say "we" because I have to admit I'm as guilty as anyone in this
respect) --- the responsible family-person appears from February through July,
and the distracted soul with other obligations and commitments appears from
August through January.
From the time we begin preparation for our draft until after the league Super
Bowl is a period of distraction from our families, friends, jobs, household
chores, or whatever else requires our time and attention. Please note that I
specified the "league" Super Bowl, not the actual NFL Super Bowl.
That's because the serious, hard-core fantasy football owners don't care as
much about the NFL after playoffs begin because our fantasy league championship
trophy has already been awarded!! Watching football just isn't the same when
you aren't fielding a team yourself.
Okay, so we all can admit to being a little distracted during the season. But
how many of us will admit to being obsessed? Probably not many, even though
most of us really are obsessed with all the details related to the success of
our team. And the obsession multiplies with each team we own.
We spend endless hours on the computer searching website after website. We
go through countless reams of paper and ink cartridges as we print off the weekly
rankings from 20 or more web sites EACH week. When preparing for the draft we
have to worry about projections, and depth charts, and average draft positions,
and mock drafts, etc. We can't rely on just one source, so we constantly search
for more and more "experts" on the web. We create links and we add
them to our bookmarks until we have so many they don't even fit on the screen!!!
If anyone else in the house needs the computer, they'll just have to wait. After
all, everyone should just understand how important fantasy football really is
and why it should be the priority!
The phone line should operate in much the same fashion as the internet connection.
Priority goes to fantasy football - no questions asked. After all, I might need
to call in a last-minute roster change. Or we should probably keep the line
open in case anyone wants to propose a trade. Rules for the kids usually include
no phone calls after 10 p.m., but it's okay if a fellow owner calls wanting
to "make a deal". After all, it's not THAT late and it's not like
it'll wake anyone up!! It's frustrating when the mother-in-law calls on Sunday
morning and interrupts a quiet family brunch or makes us get up while reading
the sports section of the paper, but it's always forgivable if the commissioner
needs to call and give some important, lifesaving fantasy information!!!
Work can be a double-edged sword during the season. If you work with people
who are in your league, or even in another league, many water cooler conversations
revolve around fantasy football topics. It can progress to mutual agreement,
disagreement, or even an occasional argument. Countless work time is wasted
having fantasy discussions or doing fantasy research on the computer. After
all, maybe the spreadsheet program on the work computer works a whole lot better
to compute individualized stats, projections, results, or whatever. If you're
like me, and no one else at work is an owner, you're almost viewed as a deviant.
They aren't as forgiving when a fellow owner calls to make a trade during work
hours. They don't understand why your computer history includes so many fantasy
sites. And they sure as heck don't understand what you're talking about half
the time - they claim you are speaking a different language when you use terms
like "starting QB", "VBD", or "IDP". I've even
been asked, "So do you REALLY 'own' those players?" They just don't
seem to grasp the concept of "fantasy"!!!
As a fantasy owner, I will admit to a strong distraction, and maybe even an
obsession with the game and all it entails. Maybe I need to make some promises:
- I vow to spend an equal amount of time with the family as I do with my fellow
- I vow to share computer time with others in the house
- I vow not to get angry when others in the house receive phone calls late
at night or early in the morning since I get them also
- I vow to actually "work" when I'm at work and not spend work time
surfing the fantasy sites, talking stats, or making trades with fellow owners
- I vow to stop making excuses to go to the store just so I can see if there
is a new issue of my favorite fantasy magazine on the shelf yet
- I vow to pay more attention to those who talk to me during Sunday pre-game
shows (as long as it isn't while the fantasy advice is scrolling along the
bottom of the screen)
- I vow to go to Sunday church service once in awhile during the season (provided
the service ends early enough to get me home before game time!!!!)
This all sounds good, but I seriously doubt that I (or any other serious owner)
can stick to all of these promises. There are some serious psychological ramifications
affixed to fantasy football ownership. We are all very, very impaired by the
impact of our addiction to this "disease". Admitting it is the first
step, and I've conquered that.... maybe I'll work on actually doing something
about it next year!!!!