So, I am an avid Fantasy Football fan. I define avid as someone who has at least one team, maybe two. They can check the stats a couple times a weeks. And they have discussions with their fellow players about the games. That is a far cry from the Fantasy Football Fanatic. That is the person that has five to ten teams, checks their stats every hour, and has the live stat tracker. They also refer to themselves as their team name all the time. The last level is the Fantasy Football Loser. This is the person who has no life and only feels they can exist in the Fantasy world. They are very similar in personality and complexion to addicts to MMPOGs and Star Wars freaks.
Anyway, one of my leagues ends this week and the other ends next week. So I will be forced to actually watch real football with no outlet for my amateur General Manager feelings. There is a debate going on about fantasy football and whether or not it has destroyed football. After thinking about this, here is my opinion. Football destroyed football. Fantasy football is merely the offspring of the changed NFL.
I grew up a Dallas Cowboys fan. That used to mean something. I knew the coach, the players, the playing method. The uniform was simple - white at home, blue on the road. Tony Dorsett. Tom Landry. Danny White. They were standbys. Even the new look Cowboys of the 1990s had the same approach. Aikman, Emmitt, Irvin, Novacek, Moose. The same players, same approach. Coaches would change, but still. It was the Cowboys. I even could take the alternative jersey for special occasions. It was because they are still the Cowboys.
Well now, things are different. I know maybe five players on the Cowboys. They change coaches every other year. Now they are coached by Parcells - ugh. I don't even cheer for them. I moved to Tampa and started to follow the Bucs. But Tampa is just as bad. Every year, they cut players that were cornerstones of the team. And we are left cheering for a team - without a personality. Personally, I don't want to just cheer for a uniform. There is no loyalty anymore in the league. I always attached myself to the players. And now, we are asked to have loyalty to a helmet. We don't know who will wear that helmet, so it is just a piece of equipment.
I think that Fantasy Football took off when people wanted to continue to follow players, even as they switched teams. I know that is what I do. There are certain players I really like. And I follow them. I love Priest Holmes. He is a great player. Derrick Brooks, Dante Hall, Curtis Martin. They are players that I really like - even if I detest the Jets. It didn't used to be that way. I hated the Redskins with everything I had. It didn't matter who it was, if they were on the Redskins, they were dirt. Now, though, there is Mark Brunell. True, he would lose a passing competition to a one-armed Girl Scout. But he is a great person. And so I root for him, even as I hope his team gets shut out and dies.
So that is the world of Fantasy Football - wanting to be in control of a team, and wanting to see the old way of doing things return. At least that is what I think. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go scan the fantasy waiver wires.