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There is a fine line inbetween a hobby and pure obsession. Fantasy Football has the ability to bridge that gap and take it about a mile over the line to insanity. For the past two weeks, since the beginning of preseason, I have been mulling over cheat sheets, projections, sleeper lists, depth charts, red zone targets, yards per carry, PPR points, IDP lists (which I don’t want to talk about) and mock drafts to prepare for this years Fantasy Football season.

Full Disclaimer: I’m playing in four leagues this year, i.e. I will have no life this season other than football. I can hear my girlfriend already yelling at me from weeks away.

Nerdy? Yes. Overly obsessed? Maybe a little. In 10 years, I’m scared at how seriously I will take Fantasy Football.

On Sunday night I had 12 team draft with my keeper league which is gearing up to be a very competitive season already. I had the fourth pick, not my favorite, but I’ll live.

This draft is completely different than any fantasy draft I have ever done. For this draft we incorporated IDP (Individual Defensive Players) and half PPR (Points Per Reception) for our scoring system. Not being prepared for IDP or PPR, my draft strategies were pretty busted. Lets just say I didn’t have the ideal draft I would of wanted to have. Most of my sleepers picks got picked up, leading to a lot of risky picks and spontaneous decisions on players like QB Tony Romo and defensive players I have never heard of. Might as well put a big WTF?! on my forehead.

Well, lets get this party started.

Pick 1 (4) – Chris Johnson RB, TEN– Yeah, I know what your thinking. “Why on earth would you pick CJ2K?!?” Well, I know he’s not playing right now due to contract issues, but do you really think that he will hold out the entire season? I don’t at all. At the fourth pick I think this is an absolute steal. 316 carries, for 1,364 yards and 11 touchdowns last season. My point exactly.

Although, I would of killed to get Ray Rice. C’es’t la vie. Chris Johnson will be back, and if he’s not he will be fabulous trade bait. I guess I’ll know if I made the right decision in a couple weeks.

Pick 2 (21) – Calvin Johnson WR, DET– This was my “you gotta be kidding me” pick. I couldn’t believe that he fell to 21st overall. In most leagues he is top 15. If Matthew Stafford can stay healthy the whole season, Megatron is going to be dynamite.

Pick 3 (28) – Frank Gore RB, SF– Yeah, I have a thing for players in contract negotiations, but how could the Niner’s survive without Gore, he is too explosive of a back to pass up at the 28th pick. Yeah, 28th pick. I did however pass up Vincent Jackson for Frank Gore and the led to humongous cognitive dissonance.

Pick 4 (45) – Tony Romo QB, DAL– With Rodgers, Vick, Brady, Rivers, and Roethlisberger all getting snatched up in the previous rounds, 1st and 2nd to be exact, I had no choice but to draft Tony Romo. This is where my Cowboys fan heart comes to worry. Romo was out all last season, and had other unlucky ones throughout the years. However, I believe that Romo has the pieces in place this year, to bust his way into the elite QB club.

Pick 5 (52) – Jeremy Maclin WR, PHI– He’s back, got a clean slate of health, and has one of the best QB’s in the league throwing him the ball. Boom.

Pick 6 (69) – Steve Johnson WR, BUF– I’m a little worried about Stevie Johnson as my WR2, but you can’t doubt his talent and you have to remember one thing. He is the Bills #1 Wide-out and Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick isn’t too bad.

Pick 7 (76) – Fred Jackson RB, BUF– Yeah, two Buffalo players, not my favorite thing in the world in the world, but Fred Jackson is a beast. I don’t care what you say.  Jackson is one of the most unappreciated guys in Buffalo and pretty effective despite their middling oline play the last few years. Even if Spiller hangs onto the starting role, Jackson will get a lot of play and i expect him to put up good RB2-3 numbers whether Spiller gets carries or not.

Pick 8 (93) – Sidney Rice WR, SEA– Risk factor, SUPER HIGH. He’s got the talent, the Seahawks definitely need him,  he will get plenty of looks, but the Quarterback is Tavaris Jackson. We’ll see how this one pans out.

Pick 9 (100) – Robert Meachem WR, NO– This is my sleeper pick. Meachem wasn’t consistent last season, but he reportedly had his best pro camp this year. With Colston wearing out and Lance Moore’s new groin injury, I think Meachem will be getting plenty of looks from Brees this season.

Pick 10 (117) – Tony Gonzalez TE, ATL– Meh, no comment.

Pick 11 (124) – Brandon Jacobs RB, NYG– This is a steal right now. Amhad Bradshaw wont last the whole season if he can’t get his fumbling problems together. Jacobs already looks like the starter right now. He’s guaranteed a workload and the Giants goal line back holds inherent value.

Pick 12(141) – Saints D/ST– Picked up a D way to early because everyone was taking defenses in the early, early rounds.

Pick 13 (148) – Lee Evans WR BAL– PPR sleeper machine. Evans is a nice fit in this format because the Ravens will throw deep to him and it’ll pay off for a couple games.

Pick 14 (165) – Aaron Hernandez TE, NE– Hernandez and Gronkowski have been in an on going TE fight, but this preseason Hernandez has been Brady’s go to guy. I’m noting Hernandez as my sleeper tight end and I think he will have an explosive year if he continues to get looks from Brady.

Pick 15 (172) – James Laurinaitis LB, STL– IDP B.S.

Pick 16 (189) – Ryan Fitzpatrick QB, BUF– 3rd Buffalo player drafted. Great. At least Fitz is poised to be a great back QB.

Pick 17 (196) – Garrett Hartley K, NO– Usually never pick up a kicker this early, but everyone went  into a kicker frenzy so I had to.

Pick 18 (213) – Eric Weddle S, SD– IDP B.S. He’s the highest paid safety so I assume he’ll do something.

Pick 19 (220) – Roy Helu RB, WSH– At this level, this is a definite steal. I think this kid is legit. Helu has been explosive lately and if he keeps up the good work, he will ultimately be starting over Ryan Torain.

Pick 20 (220) – Terrell Suggs LB, BAL– IDP B.S., Needed another player and Suggs is a 4 time Pro Bowl selection with close to 70 sacks. I’ll take my chances. I mean, I have to.

Now that I had to live through the pain once more, I will leave you with advice from my mistakes.

1. Draft handcuffs

2. Don’t panic

3. Take less risks

4. Trust your gut

5. Get players from different teams for gods sake, I don’t know why I picked so many Buffalo players. One, they play for Buffalo. Two, they play for Buffalo.

I thoroughly hope I made the right choice on some of these picks. Nothing sucks worse in Fantasy Football than being the one in last place. Fingers crossed. See you in the playoffs.



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