What I'm about to say is going to make me sound like a sore loser, but I don't really care. Much like the fact that Imagine Dragons blow, and are just the Big Bang Theory of rock music; this needs to be said.
I like many of you, love fantasy football. It's a great excuse to stay in touch with your friends (although I'm not too sure the dudes in my league feel the same way, but that's not what this is about), it let's you flex your sports-knowledge muscles, have an avenue to be competitive, and (most importantly) potentially win yourself some money. It's fucking awesome, I don't need to try to sell you fantasy football right now. We're all on board here.
At the same time it's incredibly frustrating and frankly infuriating because at the end of the day it's out of your control. To me fantasy football is skill-based, but luck is for sure a huge factor. It takes skills because you have to have some sort of clue how football works, and who is worthy of being rostered. You can make all the "right" moves, but at the end of the day you have no impact on what a player does on a given day. Dudes get hurt, game plans change etc. You start some dude who scored 23 points the week before and follows it up with 3.4. Killer stuff. You can dominate all season, but in a one game scenario anything can happen.
To me it's like the whole theory of Moneyball with the analytics getting on base by any means necessary and run prevention. Over the long sample size of the regular season it worked out, and the A's won, and won a lot, but come playoff time it doesn't matter. The numbers that over 162 games even out, do not in a one game situation. It's similar to that in fantasy as well. You can do everything to put your team in the best spot to win. You can have two of the top 5 scoring running backs all season on your roster and still lay and egg. But it's not like you're gonna bench a Todd Gurley type. So what do you do? You see games like last week where fullback James Develin scores two touchdowns for the Patriots inside the one-yard line instead of a Tom Brady, Sony Michel or Rob Gronkowski.
Not to make this post entirely about me, but in the last four years in my league I've finished either 1st or 2nd in the regular season stands AND in points scored. I'm 37-15 over that time frame. Hands down the model of consistency. I win at a .712% clip. However I have become sort of a Washington Capital, Andy Reid like figure with my playoff futility. I am a joke. I am a laughing stock. I cannot seem to win the big one.
It's not just losing, but how I lose. Dez Bryant gets held to one catch against the Giants, and then fumbles on that one catch, scoring 140+ points and still losing, years back in another league I started Matt Stafford over Russell Wilson in a game where Wilson ran for three touchdowns.
Here's my last four seasons:
2015: 1st overall 9-4
Lost in semi-finals by 1.1 points
2016: 1st overall 10-3
Lost in first round by 4.6 points
2017: 2nd overall 9-4
Lost in semi-finals by 3.8 points
2018: 2nd overall 9-4
Hoping like the Capitals that 2018 can be my time.
Although I'm the 2 seed again, I was the unlucky one to match-up against the arguably the most talented roster in the league (on paper) despite dominating throughout the regular season, I do not like my chances. As of now I'm like a 14 point underdog AS THE TWO SEED. It's looking like for yet another year Ole Dozo is gonna have to wait to have his Steve Young moment.
It just sucks because it's like I'm talking to a wall with people. It's like the office trying to convince you Hilary Swank is hot. I am good at Fantasy Football, damnit!!! I get it, winning championships is how sports are judged, even fantasy sports, but I think what I have done in fantasy has shown how much luck is a factor. The numbers speak for themselves. I've been top 2 in my league 4 years in a row, and as of now still haven't even made the finals. The playoffs are kind of fluky. The 8 seed has won my current league 3 times since 2013. Going back to 2010 I've been in 3 different leagues, and made the Final 4 like 8 times in 12 overall seasons with no ring. FUCK THAT. I am Andy Reid with better hair and clock management skills. Sure I could make better decisions throughout the year, but to year after year be consistently among the best teams in the league with nothing to show for it. It's sooooooooo frustrating to be better than a team for an entire season only to have it go up in flames against a 6-7 team that backed into the playoffs. I feel like I'm just venting to nobody right now but God damn it feels good to get it out. Fuck the fantasy playoffs, unless of course I win it all this year, in which we can all agree the playoffs are the only way to truly measure success.