Attention to detail is without question my biggest strength as a fantasy owner. I’m constantly keeping track of all the latest news and I try not to let any nugget of information slip through the cracks. Listen, there’s enough luck involved in fantasy sports that you might as well do your best to control what you can, right? This is especially important in fantasy football, as one misstep could mean the difference between a win and a loss. Failing to replace a hitter who is out of the lineup in a daily transaction rotisserie baseball league is annoying, but there’s a good chance that the blunder will not determine whether or not you win your league. And even in the rare event that it does, you won’t know it, as six months worth of stats tend to drown out four missed at-bats. Football is a different story. There’s something about seeing a “0.00” next to one of your player’s names that makes your heart sink. And when you know that it’s all your fault, well, like I said, Thursday night was rough.
I’ve never been a fan of Thursday Night Football. When the NFL first added regular Thursday games to the schedule a few years ago, the Thursday schedule didn’t start until the second half of the season. Now it begins in the very first week. One of the main reasons why I’ve enjoyed playing fantasy football is that after an intense six months of combing through baseball box scores multiple times a day, it was nice to play in leagues where you can actually take a few days off each week from managing your squad. Not anymore. And even from a non-fantasy perspective, I think it sort of cheapens Sunday. But all of this is no excuse for what happened on Thursday, November 6, 2014.
One of my four football leagues is NAIFFL. Lord Zola is the commissioner and fellow Mastersballers Lawr and Rob are two other league mates. In three tries, I have yet to qualify for the playoffs, just missing the cut on two occasions. At 4-5, I’m still very much in playoff contention. NAIFFL is a PPR league, and this is the key reason why I opted to grab Andrew Hawkins late in the draft back in August. With Josh Gordon serving his suspension,
Hawkins was expected to fill the role of top wide receiver for the Browns. Hawkins got off to a fast start, racking up a combined 21 catches for 244 yards over his first three games, but he hasn’t been quite as consistent since. Still, in such a bye-heavy week, he was clearly a better option than any of the waiver wire wideouts, and I actually felt pretty good about starting him. The only snafu was that he was officially listed as questionable due to a thigh/knee injury. But all indications, as late as 1 PM ET, were that he would suit up. At around 7:00 PM ET, I began to watch a movie, and my mind temporarily drifted away from the world of fantasy football.
By the time the movie was over, it was roughly 8:35. What? Hawkins inactive? Frantically heading over to the league site, I clicked on my lineup, but it was too late. So I’ll be trying to win this week despite that dreaded “0.00” next to Hawkins’ name. This is so unlike me. Hopefully, it won’t mean the difference between a win and a loss.
Thursday night was rough.
That remains to be seen.