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Casualty Report: Fantasy Football?

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Let’s say that the NFL lockout does not get resolved. Let’s say there is no football on Sundays, Monday nights, and some Thursdays. Will life go on? Of course. Will it be weird not to watch the Jets or anyone else? Yes. Will that be the worst part of the NFL lockout? No. Absolutely not. The worst part about losing the NFL is the loss of fantasy football. I love fantasy football. I have had at least one team every year since I was in middle school (so at least the past eight or so years). Nothing compares to last year though.

A group of friends last year decided to make a league and we had a blast. It was a way to keep in touch with one another, which is vital since some of us had graduated college and others were finishing up. The only downside was that I was in Europe last fall and the draft did not go exactly how I wanted. First, it was around one in the morning in London. Second, and more importantly, I just got back from the pubs and was drinking with some friends in the common area, so I was running back and forth between rounds. Timing it pretty well, I do not believe that I missed a round. Anyway I still drafted a solid team, but would not update it on time for a few weeks, mostly due to traveling. Would I trade my time in Europe to be more devoted to fantasy football? No, probably not. What I really enjoyed about the league was that I was able to keep in touch with friends while I was not in the country.

That brings me to the part about fantasy football that I will miss the most: the social aspect. I know people will argue that fantasy football is not a social activity or that it counts as being social as much as video games (they are social, I swear). But that’s not true, at least with my friends. Even after I got back stateside in December and I was only around for the fantasy playoffs, everyone would gather together and watch the games at a person’s house or at a local bar and we would catch up with one another all while lambasting someone for sitting a player that did well, or dropping another player.

When it comes down to it, I know the Jets will be back at some point – if not this season than next. I am not so sure that my friends will put a league together next season, since people are starting to move and get full time jobs. We will still see each other, but losing the football season and by extension fantasy football, will hurt. More importantly, this is the last season that I will be able to fleece my friends when it comes to trades, best them at waiver wire pickups, and draft better. After all, most of them are still picking up on fantasy football and I don’t have much time left to take advantage of that.

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