By Noah Stern:
Ah yes, the great American pastime: fantasy football. To celebrate the start of the season, our group of professional football analysts at the Milking Cat wanted to release a helpful guide to help all of our readers navigate this complex world.
However, we discovered that, until very recently, TheMilkingCat.com has been working off of the Julian calendar. It turns out that, similar to the Miami Dolphins, we missed the start of the season by about a month.
Our only regret is that we kept our millions of dedicated readers hanging on the edges of their respective seats, desperately awaiting a fantasy football article from the kings of sports analysis. Well, without further ado, here is your 2019 Milking Cat guide to fantasy football.
A Brief Overview: The History
The game of fantasy football was started in 1986 when Tommy “Fantasy” Patterson and David “Football” Silverstein got caught in the rain at a South Bend, Indiana bus station. Both men were on the way to see their beloved Indianapolis Colts take on the New York Jets at the Hoosier Dome.
The bus was so delayed, however, that the two men decided to just simply draft fake teams of 7 players plus a kicker and defense, keep track of every game that week, award 0.1 points to a player every yard he gains, add in bonus points for touchdowns, allow for the trading of players, and develop an entirely new and different world of sports media centered around this game, which was all much easier than catching a different bus.
Based on a combination of their childhood nicknames, Patterson and Silverstein decided to call this new game “Fantasy Football.”
Types of Leagues
Woah there big fella! We get that you’re excited to go right into drafting your favorite NFL players, but there’s much more that goes into fantasy football than that. Before you start thinking about who you’re going to draft, you first have to consider what kind of league you’re going to join.
Standard Scoring: This is the most basic fantasy league there is. Points awarded for yards, touchdowns, etc. Very simple stuff, mostly targeted at people who consider oatmeal a “fun treat.”
PPR Scoring: PPR, or point per reception, scoring is quickly becoming the most popular format for fantasy leagues. It awards a bonus point when a player catches a pass. Basically, this is designed to completely undermine the value of an old-school power running back and make Vince Lombardi turn in his grave.
IDP League: In this type of league, instead of drafting an entire team’s defense as one “player,” you have to individually draft defensive players and even a head coach. That means that the draft is considerably longer and all members must also analyze an entirely new batch of players in addition to their picks for offense. Ergo, this kind of league requires a serial killer-esque level of research and attention. People who play in IDP leagues aren’t fun at parties.
Only Kickers League: As the name implies, in this league you are only allowed to draft kickers. Points are awarded for field goals and extra points, but an extra 100 points can be earned if your kicker registers a tackle in a game.
CFL Fantasy League: If you really want to be that guy, you can also play fantasy football with players from the Canadian Football League. We assume. Also the kicker league was a joke.
Anti-League: In this very niche league-type, no one actually ever plays fantasy football. They instead spend their free time pursuing meaningful hobbies that enrich their lives and give them interesting things to say in a conversation.
The most important day in your fantasy season is draft day. Like in most leagues around the country, you will only be able to find *one* feasible two-hour window in between mid-August and early September that works for everyone in your league. So, for the love of God, please don’t schedule something for that day.
Drafting strategy is fairly simple. Here are some of the most important points in a nice, orderly list
-Look at running backs first -Don’t discount the value of a premier wide receiver if you can’t find a running back you’ve heard of -Don’t reach for a quarterback
-Don’t wait to pick a quarterback -If you don’t get one of the top 5 tight ends you’re screwed at tight end -DO NOT reach for a tight end -Pick a good defense in a late round -Never pick a defense, just stream them weekly -OJ Simpson picked Saquon first this year -Keep track of bye weeks -Draft for value, disregard position -Draft by position -You’ll never really know when to start Marlon Mack -Draft the player the next guy wants the most -Draft a running back in a committee backfield. No really, we dare you -We just really have a feeling about Corey Davis this year -Set your queue if you’re going to leave the draft -Honestly just take Mahomes first round -You can always make trades -If you don’t ride with the team you drafted you’re a failure
And that’s pretty much it.
Well, this guide should set you up to dominate your fantasy league this year. Or really next year since this article is going to come out in October. Also, please remember that fantasy football is just a game and should not be taken extremely seriously. Just know that if you don’t win on a given week you will take it personally and hold it against the person who beat you as well as add entries to the list of players who have scorned you. Jamison Crowder, we’ll see you in hell.
Any fantasy questions can be asked in the criminally-underused comments section here on The Milking Cat.