Fantasy football woes


I was screwed. I knew it, deep down, felt it in my gut.

Another bad decision.

Another bad week.

Another player down.

I wanted to stamp my feet, throw my hands up in the air, cry foul and start anew. It just wasn’t FAIR! It wasn’t supposed to be like this! I had great plans in store for this year, and it all had gone to hell in a handbasket. There would be no do-overs.

My Yahoo! Sports Fantasy Football team was giving me almost as many fits as my New York Giants, who FOUND ways to lose week after week. And it was fugly.

I was having a major crisis. I was flopping around like a freshly caught fish on dry land trying to find its way back into the water. It wasn’t a pretty sight.

The football gods guffawed at many of my draft-day choices, as did a few of my fellow league members. I felt like I was doomed before the season had even begun, and I had no one to blame but the person looking right back at me in the mirror.

I didn’t do my homework.

I usually research the players I’m hopefully going to get the chance to draft, make sure they’re healthy at the very least. But I had gotten lazy, didn’t bother checking, didn’t even do anything as simple as click on the information squares by their names BEFORE adding them to my team.

I couldn’t clean the egg off my face fast enough before another one hit me.

The first three rounds came and went without incident. Calvin Johnson. Drew Brees. Victor Cruz. I was coasting right along, so damn pleased with myself.

And then I picked David Wilson. Total bust. He fumbled twice in the first game of the season, played sparingly the next four weeks and then suffered a herniated disc.

Jason Witten was a solid fifth-round pick, as was Reggie Wayne. But Wayne went down with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in Week 7. Finito!

That wasn’t nearly the worst of it, though.

Next, I selected Ahmad Bradshaw. Sure, he had foot ailments his entire career, but he played through them just fine. The Indianapolis Colts, who signed him after he was released from the Giants, swore that he was their No. 1 guy in the backfield. They lied. In a shocking turn of events, the Cleveland Browns traded former first-round draft pick Trent Richardson to the Colts on Sept. 18. Bradshaw played in just three games before he was placed on injured reserve with a neck injury. He also is kaput for the year.

I chose Eli Manning afterward. Boy, was I ever stupid with that one. The Giants’ quarterback leads the league in interceptions with 15, although New York has won two games in a row after starting out 0-6. He put up some crappy points the one week I did start him, when Brees was on a bye, but both the Giants and myself ended up winning. Double bonus!

After taking the New England Patriots’ defense, I saw that no one had swiped Michael Crabtree and couldn’t fathom why. He had a breakout season the year prior, and yet, he still was sitting there undrafted. I should have known better. Hello? Anyone home in there? That’s when clicking on the info box by his name would have come in handy. Out with a torn Achilles tendon. Not expected to return until late in the season. Helpful tidbits. But I was too busy patting myself on the back for scooping him up to notice.

I regretted Chris Ivory immediately and dumped him almost as quickly. I must have been hitting the crack pipe to have picked a player from the New York Jets.

Then came Sidney Rice, who was dealing with injury issues during the offseason, and now is done after tearing his ACL on Monday. Not that he was much of a factor in most of the games he played, anyway. I turfed him early on, too.

I snagged Justin Blackmon – who kicked off the season with a four-game suspension for violating the National Football League’s substance-abuse policy – in hopes that he would do me proud. And he was doing just dandy until he was suspended indefinitely last week for violating that same policy. He won’t be eligible to apply for reinstatement until 2014. All kidding aside, I sincerely hope he gets the treatment he needs. He obviously has a problem, which, at the very least, dates back to his college days at Oklahoma State.

I dropped Heath Miller, yet another dud. And Justin Tucker, my final draftee, was an afterthought at kicker.

Only six of those 14 selections remain on my team. Sad, indeed.

Not surprisingly, I lead my league in moves with 19. The real surprise – after a 2-3 start that included a three-game losing skid – is that I’ve somehow managed to reel off four wins in a row for third place overall. Go figure.

Maybe, just maybe, there’s hope for me yet.


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