With Week One of the National Football League season in the books, the first week of fantasy football trading, waiving and headaches has begun.
If you have never played or even heard of fantasy football, it is basically the “ownership” of NFL players, and each week the owner sets a lineup of players that they think will have the most productive week. After draft night, which is a fun and stressful time, each owner squares off with a different league owner each week of the season. A set point system tallies up each owner’s total to determine that week’s winner.
The best part about fantasy football is that it gives fans the chance to feel a part of their favorite players’ seasons. It almost forces them to watch more than their preferred team. Obviously, there are the NFL enthusiasts who enjoy watching any team, but there is a different sense of involvement when you need one of those players to throw, catch, rush or kick for yardage and scores.
Personally, this is the first year I’ve been involved in fantasy football, and so far I think I’ve checked my team an average of 20 to 30 times every day. I’ve been following NFL insiders like Matthew Berry, John Clayton and Adam Schefter on Twitter, trying to find out the latest on injuries and even how players have looked in practice.
To some people, this may sound like insanity and a waste of time. For those of us who can’t get enough football, however, this is paradise. Thanks to the evolution of smartphones, I even have the ability to check up on my team on my ESPN fantasy football app.
Let’s be honest. Sunday, for many students, is “study day” the day we all recover from the weekend’s activities and unwind before starting another week of class. It usually takes us until about four or five in the afternoon to really get going on homework. This gives us the perfect window to watch the first round of NFL games. Coincidence? I think not.
There is nothing much better than sitting around with your friends who are all in your fantasy league, constantly checking the scoreboard and tracking their players. It makes you feel like you’re actually involved with something real, especially when you’re kicking yourself as CJ Spiller scores 24 points sitting on your bench.
Fantasy football expands the horizons of NFL fans beyond the bubble of their own team. It is a fun and exciting way to get engrossed in the NFL world and it truly is a nice escape from the everyday grind of classes and work. It may be a fantasy world, but sometimes it’s an uplifting transition from calculus to Calvin Johnson.