Archive for Whiz News

It’s Draft Time, and the Gloves are Already Off

 

The trash talking has begun among the owners of my league (and I do mean MY LEAGUE- I’ll own them all by the end of the season), just a day before the big draft.

I can go on all day about draft strategy, players I like, and all that other crap, but since our league is skipping a live draft in favor of the computerized one, the following week I’ll devote my posts to the upcoming season- the real deal- and how I plan to conquer the fantasy football world.

But first, here’s a list of the franchises in my league, and a factoid that will allow you all to develop a more personal bond with the participants:

SD ShrinksSan Diego Shrinks

This team is owned by the league commissioner, but it took him several years before he won the championship of his own league. How much of a threat can he be if he doesn’t have the good sense to fix the outcome in his own favor?

 

 

Awesome Tigers

An analog player in a digital league. This guy screwed up one of my trades (and possibly my championship run) because he couldn’t figure out which button to press. Easy to beat when the bye weeks start to hit.

 

 

SD Reboltz

Arch rival of Team Whizzinators who continues to ride the coattails of his wife, a past champion of this league. Tough to beat when she’s in charge; otherwise, a non-factor.

 

 

Head Coach of Success

Though suffering from delusions, he soldiers on in his Quixotic quest for a championship. He doesn’t suffer from self esteem issues, just a lack of proficiency.
Malverne Mules

The world-record holder for player transactions. Revels in trading out bad players for REALLY bad players.

 

 

 

Vicktorville Pitbulls

Last year’s champion, and beneficiary of the Tigers inability to operate a computer. Competitive despite the handicap of having the least creative name in the league.

 

Life’s a Game of Football

This guy is new to the league (and son of Head Coach), but like the proverbial box of chocolate, we don’t know what we’re going to get. The smart money believes that this guy has no chance because this apple fell too close to his tree.

 

 

Go Whiz!

 

 

 

Don’t Remove the Officials, Just the Preseason

I took my advice and saw some pre-season football. Regretfully, I will never recover that lost time of my life.

The fantasy football draft is one week away and preparations for Team Whizzinators are underway; unfortunately, this includes watching pre-season football. Team Whiz checked out the Chargers-Vikings, 49ers-Broncos, and Jets-Panthers, and learned nothing that would impact draft-day decisions.

That’s right, nothing- nothing that would give me an edge, no “sleepers”, no emerging rookies…

… no entertainment value either. The replacement referees saw to that.

It’s not as if the NFL needed help in making these games more boring, but as a result of the labor dispute with the regular officials, these games have become downright unbearable to watch. The replacement officials (including a guy fired from the Lingerie Football League) are incapable of managing the game, unable to keep pace with the speed of the game, and unable to make good calls (they’re pretty adept at making bad ones, though, and even better at not calling anything at all). The officiating on the Chargers-Vikings game caused the game to come to a crawl, so much so that I switched to the local baseball broadcast… the local RADIO broadcast!

Come on Roger, do it for the kids.

As with any labor dispute, there will be collateral damage, and this dispute is no different. Oh sure, us fantasy “coaches” will feel the impact, whether a blown call cost one of our players a touchdown, or worse yet, resulted in an injury. I doubt that the NFL gives the proverbial rat’s ass about that. Speaking of rat’s asses, the NFL probably doesn’t care whether a gambler loses money as a result of a blown call either. The NFL makes money no matter how much money any sleazy gamblers lose.

However, I think I can say for the many communities out there who have a Pop Warner football league, or any other youth football program- “WE WANT OUR REFEREES BACK”!!

Yes Roger Goodell, while you may be enjoying the boner you get from wielding your power over officials whose pay constitutes a mere fraction of the total cost of operating your league, you are depriving the youngest and most vulnerable of your fan base the experienced officiating they deserve for their youth football games.

Don’t get me wrong, I know how desirable it must be to hire officials with the right stuff- those who have the experience of withstanding the verbal assaults from parents of those darling pee-wee warriors, of breaking up fights between overzealous parents, and on occasion being the first responder to the boo-boos that inevitably result from participation in such a violent sport. All of these skills are pretty handy for a NFL official too, so I understand why you would want such capable employees .

But we should not have to sacrifice our children’s well being just so that you can save the equivalent of nickels for 32 billionaire owners. If it’s even possible, having to replace Pop  Warner officials because of your selfishness is a bigger deal than the impact replacement officials will have on fantasy football (OK, that’s nonsense- but it’s still a pretty big deal).

So come on, Roger. Don’t settle this dispute for all of us in fantasy football land, or because of your concern for the safety of your players, or for the integrity of the game itself.

Do it for the kids.

Pre-Season, Week 3 – Time to Get Serious

Most pre-season football games are a waste of time, and so far I haven’t wasted any of mine by watching them. However, now that every team has two games under their belt, it’s time to start getting serious about player evaluation.

 Weeks 1 and 2. Exercises in futility.

Everyone knows the drill. Through the first two games, the coaches allow all of their scrubs to beat on each other- during the games, that is. The veterans put the beating on them during the rest of training camp. During this time, we show up to watch the beatings (practice), and some of you even pay money to watch them all play games (scrimmages).

But let me state what should be obvious to all football fans. Most of these hapless gladiators you’ve seen during the first two weeks were fun to watch in college, but somehow lost their luster when they slipped on the jerseys of the professionals. The coaches know this, football “experts” know this (though Mel Kiper could use some convincing), and perhaps even you know this. However, only the coaches truly understand what the scrubs are here for and thus have few expectations of them. Why? Because they weren’t brought in to audition, they were brought in to prepare the real players for the upcoming season. Sort of like the temp worker at your office brought in to cover for the guy on work comp (the same guy who’s the anchor for your bowling team), or maybe a fellow like you, obediently performing as the boss’s right hand man until his son graduates college… or more likely, the Betty Ford Clinic.

Basically, what we’ve seen to this point is minor league football. If you can’t wait for college football (the real minors of professional football), the first two weeks helped to quench that thirst. But your a fantasy football “coach”, and you have more important things to do. Those things begin during week three.

What’s the fuss over week 3?

Week three is the only time during the pre-season when things get pretty interesting. The third pre-season game is the one every fantasy coach should pay attention to, and not just because the Olympics are over (and the Paralympics have yet to start- you’ve marked your calendar, right?).

First of all, game three is the true dress rehearsal for the NFL. The players you will see during the season will be featured prominently during this game, more so than the whole pre-season combined. You have a chance to see who’s ready, who’s rusty, and most important, who gets hurt. Great time to see prospective fantasy picks in their natural habitat, and with enough time remaining afterward for you to formulate a draft strategy prior to your draft day. Hell, you should even have time to create that nifty draft board everyone is supposed to have (if you’re really ambitious, a full-blown war room, too).

Consider this also- shortly after these games, the first major cuts will be made (Chad Johnson doesn’t count as a major cut- it was more like canceling a reality TV show). If your into picking “sleepers” (I’m not), or if you have a lot of teams in your league, the player movement that occurs after cut-down day will be of interest. However, if you’re in a small league like mine (8 teams), you don’t need to pay attention to any of that- just check and see if your favorite players survived without injury.

Week 4- Back to square 1.

Speaking of paying attention, you probably don’t want to miss week 4, just for the entertainment value. I know, the stars won’t see much action (probably as much as they saw in game 1), but you will have highly motivated players who truly have a shot at making a squad (at least THEY think so), and the effort they make will result in some pretty decent football. Minor league football, sure, but ENTERTAINING minor league football.

Or perhaps catch up on all those Paralympic events you missed from week 3.