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This Is When We Turn Into Savages

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Football matters can become something worth fighting over. Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images.
Football matters can become something worth fighting over. Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images.

There’s something about fantasy football that turns some of the best people I know into the worst people in the world. Every year I’m amazed at the level things can sink to. All in the name of a few hundred dollars and some meaningless bragging rights.

And it seems to be getting worse. Maybe it’s because my friends I are getting older and we’re too fat to compete at real sports. We have children and wives and lawns to mow. Being a part of real sports leagues is pretty much out of the question. In the summer there is beer league softball but the fall offers no such release. The fall finds this generation’s version of the weekend warrior sitting on the couch watching the Red Zone channel on Sundays.

The couch, or in my case, my buddy’s deck. We smoke cigars and eat really fatty, salty food, drink beer and yell at a television like mental patients. The neighbor’s stare and we get annoyed at them for doing so. “Stupid losers mowing their lawn and cleaning their gutters. If he were a real man he’d grab a beer and join us on the deck and watch football.” Of course, we’d never actually invite him but that doesn’t matter. We hate him and that’s the way it is.

And we hate our fantasy teams. We picked them in the draft and off the waiver wire and we really hate them. We yell at them and wish awful things on their teammates and coaches. Every time Fred Jackson touches the ball this year some owner of CJ Spiller says out loud, “I hope he breaks his leg.”  Every time Tom Coughlin benched David Wilson someone wished Coughlin dead. That’s right, when playing fantasy football it’s perfectly acceptable to hope people break limbs or drop dead because you need 12 points from your flex position.

Our wives hate us. They want to go apple picking and pumpkin gathering and to their mother’s house for brunch. Not on Sundays. And don’t bother making plans on Thursday or Monday nights either. We have players playing! And we need to watch the game or else they won’t perform. You call it stupid superstition. We call it common sense.

Some of our wives and girlfriends are in our leagues. We really hate them. Especially if they win. We declare we'll quit the league if that happens. 

Our friends hate us. They hate our team name. They hope our players drop dead and our team finishes 1-12. They hate every trade we make and call us morons for making them. “You traded Cam Newton for Calvin Johnson? You got robbed.” “You traded Calvin Johnson for Cam Newton! You got raped!” Yes, we use terms like “raped” way out of context because nothing in fantasy football involves any context of reality.

Our friend’s friends really hate us. Most of them have never met us and because of this they feel like they can say anything to us in the lawless wasteland of the leagues message board. They insult our wives. Question our manhood. Accuse us of not being able to get it up in years while ignoring the fact we have infant children at home. They threaten us with bodily harm. In the past year we’ve been threatened with hand to hand beatings, arrows through the heart and being run down in the street with any vehicle available. You would think motorcycle hit and run would be hard to pull off but some fantasy owners swear by it.

We hate the commissioner. It’s the one thing we actually all agree on. The commissioner is a moron! He’s lazy! He's involved too much! He approved that trade? He’s a moron! And when presented the opportunity to take over the league and become the commissioner we’re all way too busy. We tell the current commissioner he’s doing a great job and tell him if he just tweaks a few things the league will be perfect. We’re scared he’ll kick us out.

Because, in the end, the thing we hate most of all in the idea of not having a league to join next year.

After all, next year is the year we are going to draft the perfect team. Be a perfect 13-0 in the regular season and roll our opponents in weeks 15 & 16 on way to the championship. Next year is the year we draft that sleeper in the 13th round that winds up being a top-10 stud. Next year is the year we win the money, the trophy and the bragging rights!

All of that happens next year.

If we can just manage to not kill each other first.

The Week 11 Blitz

Apparently Rob Ryan’s voodoo doll of Jerry Jones that he purchased upon arriving in New Orleans was money well spent.

Ed Reed may be the missing piece in the Jets secondary. He also may be retired by Week 13.

Andy Dalton has to be the most borderline franchise quarterback in the league.

The Green Bay secondary made Nick Foles and Riley Cooper look like Montana and Rice. I don’t care if Aaron Rogers comes back at 100 percent—there’s no way that team is making a run with those defensive backs.

Andrew Luck is at risk of not finishing the season if he keeps taking the hits he has been taking every week.

The NFC East is wide open. And the worst division in the NFL.

Carolina’s defense looks so good I’m assuming management is wishing they had spent a little money at the wide receiver position, as opposed to investing in three starting running backs.