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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Commentary from the Edge - Week 12
Kevin Ratterree
November 24, 2009
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If you have ever had children, you learn as a parent never to give the kids too many options.  By that I mean you learn to say to the child, "do you want Lucky Charms or Cocoa Puffs?' Presented with two distinct choices the child can be decisive and make the correct decision based on his or her personal morning sugar requirements.

If only it were that easy in fantasy football.  We all draft teams that we hope will be deep and chock full of potential.  But what happens when we do?  Chaos.

Let me clarify that.  In leagues like WCFF, where there is no trading allowed, too many roster choices can lead to chaos.  I found myself in an interesting position last week when I had to choose a WR3 from three top 23 receivers on my roster.  I could have put any of the following players in that spot:  Derrick Mason (23 pts), Nate Burleson (16 pts) , Pierre Garcon (16 pts), or Miles Austin (8 pts).

Guess which one I picked?  Yeah.  Austin. It's a knack I have.  My deep roster is kicking my own ass.

Nate Burleson got me again.  Was gonna start him despite my rant last week.  Turned chickensheet.  Here he comes back from the grave.  Another Burleson kick in the groin.

Right now I would like to give thanks to the horrible Cleveland Browns for finally allowing Calvin Johnson to run wild against them, thus rendering my Miles Austin horror of little consequence.  Yes, my little WCFF team that could is going to the playoffs.  Sporting an ugly 4-7 record, but the second most points in the league, I have a 4 seed in my WCFF online championship.  The unlucky team in the league thrust upon the playoffs because of that nasty little "total points" provision in the rules.  Greatest thing since Sunday Ticket I tell ya!

The guy that finished third in total points ended up at 3-8.  Talk about an upside down league.  I just can't believe that someone got screwed hard here and it wasn't me.  I avoided "assuming the position" by a mere 11 points.  Reaper's been chasing me all season but he was really breathing down my neck the last two weeks.  Relief.

I will be matched up against the league #1 seed in the first round.  That's the guy who would be the luckiest guy in the league.  He cruised to a 9-2 record and finished in the middle of the pack in points.  My team is a bit better than his.  I should beat him this week and advance to the league championship game.  But first I need to find a dart board and write 4 receivers names on it. 

Bob Costas made one of his impassioned pleas on Sunday Night Football.  It seems Mr. Costas is a bit miffed about the NFL's overtime rules.  He says it "just isn't fair" and "there has to be a better way."

Look Bobby boy, you picked your sport, and it is baseball.  You remember baseball?  The strikes, the steroids, the hallowed records felled by mighty syringe.  The four hour games officiated by big blind hunks of humanity that work under the protective umbrella of "no replays."  The sport where the strike zone changes from umpire to umpire, day to day, and is never where it is supposed to be according to the rule book. 

The sport that lets an exhibition game decide home field advantage in its championship.  Seriously?

The sport where tied games can actually last until until the wee hours of the morning, long after all the people that gave a damn went home and went to bed. 

Don't try to turn football into baseball Mr. Costas.  I realize it might seem barbaric and offensive to your high-brow analytical thinking, that a team in overtime never gets their hands on the ball.  But that's the way it is in the NFL. Either you win in the allotted time or you suffer the consequences of the coin-flip.  You play offense.  You play defense.  You do what you have to do to win, coin flip be damned. 

And in case you haven't noticed, overtime football in the NFL is really really good.  It is dramatic.  It is exciting.  It is one of the best things in sports.  Period.  We aren't into "less exciting."  Are you telling us the NFL needs to make its product less exciting Mr. Costas?  Are you trying to bring us down to baseball's level Mr. Costas?  Perhaps you would like us to make one of our owners like Jerry Jones our commissioner.  Or let the individual franchises decide how big their playing field will be. 

Maybe we should do away with our instant replay system so we can squeeze in time to stand up and sing "take me out to the ball-game" in the middle of the 4th quarter.

Maybe you can interest the NFL in a "throw count" similar to the "pitch count" and see if we can start developing "closer" quarterbacks.  Of course these closers would be allowed to come onto the field and take several practice throws, while the coaches and referees stand around talking, and the people in the stands doze off. 

And why stop there?  Instead of limiting teams to 6 time outs a game, just give them as many as they want like in baseball.  Who cares how long the game takes?  We need to make sure this is fair!  You need a time out to scratch your groin?  You got one.

No Mr. Costas.  You helped build your world, you stay in it.  Don't try to make your world our world.  I moved to this world for a reason.  The NFL "gets" me.  The NFL caters to me.  The NFL knows far better than the MLB what I want.  And they know I don't want some watered down namby pamby overtime system.  I want to see real football, right until the end.

Mr. Costas, things are going just fine over here in our world.  Why don't you take all that idealism over to the MLB.  That's a mess that could use some help.  We're fine, thanks.  Could you pass the Cocoa Puffs?

Misery Index  

10)  Bears:  Could someone get Devin Hester some pants that fit?  Please?  And, could we  have more opposing quarterbacks tutor Cutler on national TV after every game he blows with an interception?  That was awesome.  Shouldn't have wasted your time Donovan.  Dude will only spent time with team-mates that like to bend it.  Party boy in a party town.  Hard to believe this isn't working out... 

Chug a lug Chug a lug.
Throw the ball high and low
Burns the fans and owners don't you know
Chug a lug Chug a lug.

9)  Redskins:  I saw a deal on TV where they were talking about Tom Cruise trying to move inanimate objects with his mind.  Maybe you can talk Cruise into trying to move your team up the standings with his mind.  Hey, it's worth a shot.  

8) Broncos:  Maybe I missed something, did the Chiefs and the Broncos magically switch places a few weeks ago?  Because that team that got toasted by San Diego sure looked like the Chiefs circa week 3.  6-4 probably doesn't usually earn you a spot in this rarefied ground, but that putrid performance was so noteworthy on the back end of the 4 game slide, I have to give you style points.  And suddenly my world is starting to make sense again.  Hmm.

7)  Jets:  Captain Sully couldn't bring in this one in one piece.

6) Seahawks:  Dear Nate Burleson, please stop trying to destroy me from within.  If my head explodes over the next five weeks, its on you.  And trust me, you don't want what is in there on you.     

5) Bills:  Well, the coach took the bullet.  Now Buffalo fans are looking forward, dreaming big with names like Shanahan, Cowher, and even Schottenheimer being tossed around.  So hope reigns supreme.  Meanwhile the team only lost by 2.  Owens got to re-live his glory days of "big star on a losing team", and no old dudes flipped you off after you got your asses kicked.  All in all, a pretty good week.

4) Rams:  Let me get this straight.  You knocked Warner out of the game.  You were within a touchdown and you couldn't get over on Matt Leinart?  Wow.  This is even worse than I imagined.

3)  Buccaneers:  I hate to break it to you, but the only team whose defense blows worse than yours is the Lions.  And you thought you had nothing to be thankful for on this holiday...  

2)  Lions:  You seriously didn't think that barely surviving the offensive juggernaut that is the Cleveland Browns would get you anything but this did you?  If you thought that, I''ve got a  football stadium I'll sell you for a half million dollars.  Seriously.

1)  Browns:  What can I say?  We saw this coming.  You lost to the other most pathetic team in the league so here you are.  But suddenly, none of that seems to matter as we can focus our attention on the next "savior" head coach.  I keep hearing the name Bill Cowher.  Which tells me that Browns fans are probably expecting more than they will get in the next transition.  Why do you people set yourself up for disappointment?  Why would Cowher quit Pittsburgh and then come here?  Why?  Sadomasochistic?  Just consider yourselves lucky if they don't bring in the next Matt Millen and Rich Kotite.

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