Random Firings of Neurons

The rest of your life is going to be spent getting back up after life has knocked you down again. You might as well just get used to it.

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Location: Round Rock, Texas, United States

Monday, August 23, 2004

On Chaos

Okay, I have a confession to make. It is a source of shame for me, so I have to get this off my chest, or else I will feel that every thing I have told you will be a lie.

I am a Fantasy Football geek.

Yep, that's me. I am one of those pinheads who watches a game, and doesn't care who wins, as long as MY PLAYER SCORES! Or my opponent's players don't. Heck, I have even cheered for my favorite team(s) to give up a bunch of points, just my players can get me some touchdowns! So, since my draft is coming up in about 6 days, I thought I would take this opportunity to discuss the situation in my Fantasy Football league, AFTER I talk about the NFL. I will give a warning when my football talk is going to end, and my geekness will begin.

I am a die-hard Green Bay Packer fan. I am (barely) old enough to remember Lynn Dickey throwing passes to Paul Coffman, and I grew up watching James Lofton catch passes. Also, I remember when the only two games us Packer fans cared about winning were the two games we played against Da' Bears. Which were the only two games we had a chance of winning, anyway. The Packers were just that bad.

I am also an Atlanta Falcons fan. I don't like to admit that much, since being a Falcons fan is kinda like being a Cubs fan, in baseball, only without the fan loyalty. The Falcons have just been a bad team, for a long time. But, I'm hoping that a certain young quarterback might help turn that around. It worked in Green Bay...with a former Falcons quarterback.

My next four favorite teams change from week to week, since those teams are whoever plays Da Bears, the Viqueens, the Cowgirls, and the Niners, in no particular order. And if two of those teams play each other, I hope for a tie, so both teams lose, since the odds of a God pointing at each team and saying "You BOTH lose" are quite slim.

On the AFC side of the ball, I could really care less. The Tennessee Titans are the only AFC team I can even muster the energy to care about, much less like or dislike. I happen to like the Titans, but not enough to watch them, or even see how they are doing. But, if they are on, and I happen to be watching, I will pull for them. Every other team in the AFC could dissappear tommorrow, and I don't think I would even notice until Week 9 of the season.

Okay, here is where the Geek Stuff starts, so, if you don't like FF Geekiness, GO AWAY! If you do, sit back and enjoy the ride.

Okay, it is a rule in Fantasy Football that running backs win championships. It is a rule that I learned WAY too late, but I have now at least learned it. So, the A-list, stud running back is worth WHATEVER you have to do to get him. In our league, though, this is going to get interesting.

Our league is awfully weird, compared to other leagues I have compared it to. We are a "keeper" league, which means we get to retain players from year to year, but we are also an "auction" league, which means you don't get a player just because you call out his name. We also have a MUCH higher salary-cap than most other auction leagues. (we have a $500 cap, most leagues have a $100 cap) Also, I have NEVER seen a Fantasy Football magazine rate players on a scale that even comes CLOSE to our scoring system. In other words, we have a lot of goofy rules, which makes it difficult, not impossible, but still difficult, to rate players according to the "professional" Fantasy Football geeks.

Now, one of the entertaining things about a "keeper-auction" league is free-agency. Since we can keep players from year to year, but we also have to bid on them, we have contracts for those players. So, if I sign Daunte Culpepper to my team for $69 (out of $500) in his rookie year, I will have him on my team for as long as I want him, or until his contract runs out, OR until the final year of his contract, when he becomes a restricted free-agent...when other teams can bid on him, I just have the option to match whatever salary is offered, to retain his services. So, restricted free-agents can cause a lot of havoc on a team that is trying to build around a stud-quality player. If the owner wants to retain the services of that player in his restricted year, he will usually have to pay, sometimes more than he really wanted to. Which can really ruin an owner's plans for his draft. (for the record, I DID get Culpepper, in his rookie year, for $69, AND got Donavan McNabb, the same year, for $15...too bad I forgot to get a running back)

Now that I have explained our Byzantine contract structure for our league, I want to tell you about the chaos that is going to be happening at our auction this year. It seems that all but three of the top ten, and five of the top fifteen, running backs are either unsigned free agents, or restricted free agents, this year. With Ricky "the Smoker" Williams taking a permanent vacation from the NFL, that now means that six of the top ten running backs in the NFL are now fair game in our league. I am not the only one who has noticed this, since I noticed EVERY team with one of those restricted free agent running backs has cut most of their team, to free up money for those backs. Now, to give you a little glimpse into the chaos that will be erupting, Ricky "the Inhaler" Williams was the highest paid running back, and player, in our league, at $190. The next TEN running backs, ranking-wise, don't make much less. So, there are going to be some BRUTAL bidding wars on these running backs. I would not be surprised to see owners having to pay half their salary cap to ONE player. I, for one, will only go as high as 40% of my cap, or $200. But the odds are, I can finally get that stud-running back who has been the missing link in my otherwise fine Fantasy Football team. One year, Stacey Mack was my best running back, and HE was the best running back available when I signed him.

Okay, enough geek-speak. I didn't really have anything to say today, but I feel guilty for not posting on Sunday, so I am trying to make it up today.

Semper Fidelis: Always Faithful, to God, Corps and Country