Sunday, September 11, 2011

Fantasy Football - a brief draft history at Paddy's Game Shoppe

We run a couple of Fantasy Football Leagues at the store.  We started the first football season that we were open. There were 10 of us. We were going to run a keeper league, so even this first draft was going to be important.  I went in feeling, well, unprepared. This wasn’t a completely new world for me. I’ve been playing ESPN’s fantasy games for years. The big difference being, none of those games were drafts where we were going to be competing for the same players! In the games I was playing, if everyone wanted Tom Brady for quarterback, you had him.

We had some white boards to write draft picks on. Which lasted about two rounds, and then they were full. Many times someone picked someone, only to find out they had not heard when someone else picked them. These days, we have Commish kits from Big graphs with our team names and logos (yes, we have logos!) and bright, color coded stickers with the players names on them. No more desperately trying to spell Houshmanzadah (?) or even BenJarvius Green-Ellis.  Troy who?? Pala –what-a? Now I just have to remember if he’s a wide receiver (white stickers) or a running back (green) only to sheepishly start digging through the yellow stickers to find him. Who takes a tight end in the 1st round??

Well that year, it was my Uncle Glen, and laugh at his strategy all you want. He took Jeremy Shockey in the first round of the expansion draft. I do have to admit that his next two picks, Tom Brady and Randy Moss, probably had more to do with his winning the championship that year than Jeremy Shockey did. But it stands in the league annals. The guy that took a tight end in the first round, won the championship.

In the six years the league has existed, we’ve never had a repeat championship. Five years, five winners and last year, it was me!  We have both An individual trophy and one that stays at the store. That way past winners have proof for their trash talking at the draft. Which is all part of the fun. The groans and moans and snickers as the draft continues. We actually have two of them. We have a Dynasty league and we have another league. That league has changed format and will be an interesting draft next year. Each person will be deciding how many they are keeping, but it’s only going to be revealed round by round.  I can’t wait to see how it plays out next year.

The end of the year, we have a party and watch the Big Game. You know which one I mean. The one in February, the one that comes with all the new commercials. We have snacks, and play games during the afternoon. We eat pizza and watch the game.  At half times, prizes and trophies are awarded. 

We have a lot of fun during the year. We chat online during the games. We sweat out scoring changes. We prowl the free agents. All for a silver trophy and our name on the plaque.  And the bragging rights. You can’t forget the bragging rights. Did I mention that I won last year?

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