I hope everyone is enjoying the fantasy football season, and that your squad is a solid 3-0, or 3-1 as mine is, due to a double-header week.
This is our league’s 9th year and it’s the only league I’m a part of. As soon as you cross the rubicon and join multiple leagues, your emotions are torn, you’re rooting for and against the same player and the time you spend researching whether or not to pick up Leonard “Hank Time” Hankerson can seriously affect your career, family life and personal well-being.
But when you’re a member of the Group 1 Fantasy League, 1 league is plenty. Our league isn’t your run-of-the-mill fantasy league. For example, I didn’t draft until the 8th round this year and I’m currently banned from trading until after week 6. How is this possible? Here are a few things that make our league brilliant:
1. Each team gets to franchise 3 players. Over the years you build an identity and have an extremely emotional attachment to “your boys.” Franchise tags are due before the draft each year. When you franchise a player for the first time, you get him for 1 year. If you franchise him a second time, he’s on your squad for 3 more years. If you franchise him a third time, he’s on your squad for 5 more years! For the record, no player has ever been franchised a 3rd time (9 years total), although Drew Brees may be the first, though his owner has been shopping him
2. Franchise players cannot be dropped to waivers, but they can be traded. And if you trade a player who’s just been franchised for 3 more years, for example, you lose that franchise tag for that time. So the team you traded him to now has 4 franchise tags.
3. The key to our league’s success (or inevitable demise, depending on your tastes) is the ability to trade future draft picks. This rule has been changed back and forth due to certain teams taking it to the extreme, but current rules allow you to trade picks up to 2 years in advance and there’s no limit on the number of picks you can trade. So in theory, if i’m gearing up for a playoff run around the trade deadline (week 8), I could offer an opponent my entire 2013 draft for Megatron. Is a better chance at fantasy glory this year worth being a bottom-feeder next year? It’s a question every member of our league has to face. For me, it’s always been a simple choice. Carpe Diem! This is also the answer to why I didn’t draft until round 8 this year (For the record, I took LaMichael James and he was on waivers by week 1).
4. We have 3 double-header weeks: week 3, 12 and 13 (we don’t want them to fall on bye weeks, as it would suck a fatty to have Aaron Rodgers on a bye during a double-header week and having to roll with Jake Locker). This allows for big-time shakeups in the standings. I could be 4 games out of the playoffs going into week 12 and be in first place by the end of week 13.
5. Our commish is an irrational dictator, but he works his ass off and we love him. Fireworks, trade conspiracies, collusions, back-alley deals, and death threats are all part of our wild west atmosphere. Never a dull moment in our league. There have been times when friendships have been strained and trust kicked to the curb (our treasurer once gambled away the entire league pot and he’s now running a campaign to be reinstated). But we always circle the wagons and remember that fantasy football is at it’s heart and soul a game played amongst mates.
I guess we never got to discussing why I’m banned from trading until after week 6. That’ll have to wait until next time
Work the waiver wire, never forget to submit a lineup, trust in the fantasy gods and may the odds be ever in your favor!
Ps – We use a group chat app called GroupMe and it’s absolutely blistering with trash talk, highlights, and side bets on a Sunday…and pretty much any day now that I think about it. It’s basically replaced our fantasy site message board and I highly recommend it.