Somewhere, an unfortunate soul in a two-quarterback league started Matthew Stafford, Kevin Kolb and Ryan Grant on Sunday. For you, it’s going to be a tough road to travel to the playoffs and you have my sympathy.
But for most everyone else, don’t panic. It’s week one. Since football is often equated to military action, was the outcome of the American Civil War decided after the Battle of Fort Sumter? Scoring was down, but defenses are usually ahead of offenses to start the season. While everyone was making a big deal of the lack of offense, I kind of expected it.
There isn’t a lot you can glean from the opening week and I’m not going to freak out just because Andre Johnson, DeAngelo Williams and Brandon Marshall didn’t turn in fantastic stat lines. Depending on how you rank them, five of the top-six WRs in fantasy drafts were held out of the end zone. Chris Johnson and Rashard Mendenhall were the only top-10 RBs to score more than 11 fantasy points in standard leagues. That doesn’t mean Maurice Jones-Drew and Frank Gore are going to have down seasons.
But that doesn’t mean that nothing I saw in week one concerned me for the future. For a list of what I am worrying about today, keep reading …
Today is the first full Sunday of NFL football, which means I know where I’ll be 30 minutes from now: At a sports bar less than a block away watching every game on the schedule. I’ll get there at about 9:45 a.m., order a breakfast burrito, start drinking by 12 and return home — all the way home — by 5 p.m. It’s a full day.
And it’s a nerve-wracking endeavor because I play fantasy football (Ray Lewis doesn’t). I don’t know if I play more than I live it. This will be my 10th season competing in the one league I do every year. It’s just me and 11 other high school friends with nothing more than bragging rights on the line. But we take it seriously. Especially me to an absurd point.
In 2004, I got so “emotionally involved” in my fantasy matchup, I fainted while watching the games. True story. ‘Cause I’m sick like that. I’m sick like that. I’m sick.
I have never won this league, a point that continues to bring much joy to the league participants because I do the most research. I honestly should have won last year, but the Elias Sports Bureau denied me. It was the cruelest fate I’ve ever been dealt in fantasy.
But it’s not like I still think about it.
Anyway, since I’ll probably be writing many fantasy-centric posts on here during the season, I’ll probably be talking a lot about the guys who are on my team. So here is my team, at least for right now. I’ll probably trade half of them by week 3.
This year, we decided to do an auction-style draft for the first time. For 12 teams and 18 picks per team, it was extremely enjoyable. And long — 3 hours, 51 minutes. I think it’s clear where my weaknesses and strength lie, but I’ll stop talking and present the players who make up “17 Wasted Sundays” (It’s a double entendre, folks. And a lame one at that).
Yes, the NFL season officially began about 32 hours ago. But that doesn’t matter. That game sucked anyway. We’re still eight hours away from the start of the first full day of NFL football, so here is a quick rundown of my picks to make the playoffs and celebrate at the end of it all in Dallas.
AFC DIVISION WINNERS
First, a note: No, this blog is not dead. It’s just frequently idle these days. That’s all. Big difference. And with that …
Let’s start the 2010 NFL regular season!
5:20 p.m. Now that I have expressed my excitement for tonight, let me backtrack just a bit. I think I’m more excited for the first Sunday of the regular season than the first game. Sundays in the fall are football. It’s an event. I adore going out every Sunday morning in September through December and spending seven hours at my favorite watering hole. To me, that’s fun.
The first game of the season? I’ll take it. But it’s a little different being played on a Thursday and not a Sunday.
5:23 p.m. As far as a prediction, I think the Saints will ride the emotion of the banner raising and really get after Favre. The spread is New Orleans, minus-5. I think they will cover that. Saints 23, Vikings 16.
5:24 p.m. Yesterday, Adrian Peterson said he’s the best running back in football, saying Chris Johnson is not “faster stronger, anything.” Johnson responded today. You wonder if the comments have made it to Peterson’s ears.
5:26 p.m. In a strictly personal note, I have a rooting interest in this game. Robert Meachem and Ryan Longwell are on my fantasy team this year. I am facing Reggie Bush this week. So I hope Bush’s annual leg injury occurs earlier than usual this year.
5:29 p.m. I really think Favre is going to struggle in this game. The Saints’ D is overrated, but they are going to get after him hard and test that ankle, the ankle they injured. I think you will see a ton of Peterson in this game. Think of it like the same offensive game plan the Vikings opened up with last season … just against much, much, much, much, much, much, much better competition.
5:32 p.m. I’m guessing Harry Connick Jr. can’t hear the music because his singing is atrocious.
5:34 p.m. If you won the 2009 Super Bowl, why would you also choose to hang up a 2009 NFC Champions banner? That’s already insinuated.
5:38 p.m. C”mon, Colbie. We’ve been waiting seven months for this moment. No reason to keep us hanging any longer as you spend your sweet time on stage.
5:40 p.m. I have no doubt that there will be a collective bargaining agreement before next March. If for no reason other than I can’t imagine another scenario. It would be the most shameful moment in the NFL’s history.
5:41 p.m. Ryan Longwell kicks off aaaaaaaaand … EXHALE!!
5:42 p.m. Courtney Roby takes it up to the 23 and here comes the first play from scrimmage of the year. … It’s a deep middle throw to Colston for 27 yards. Well, the Saints’ offense hasn’t changed.