This article is not for you, but I am certain it will help you win your fantasy season. In fact, this may be the most important fantasy football article you will come across this pre-season. This article will help you dominate your draft, select the right players, set your best lineups and allow you to watch more NFL games.
Yes, with this article you will win because it’s for your loved ones- your parents, partner, significant other, your in-laws, girlfriend, boyfriend or anyone else in your life that doesn’t have the fantasy football sickness and stands in your way of achieving greatness in the game you love. This is an article for them. Because if that person is anything like my better half, they think Football is just a dumb game; a violently explicit game with men tackling, tumbling and slamming themselves into each other. They think it is about a pretty boy quarterback and a bunch of meatheads trying to hit each other while moving a ball across the field. But as we football conoissuers know, this is far from the truth. So to allow you the time necessary to properly dedicate yourself to assembling the best fantasy football team possible (and to help you to watch every NFL game during the season) I have penned this open letter for you to share.
There is nothing more important in life than the love, support and companionship that you provide. Believe me when I say this, as I know it to be true to my core.
As you also know, I am a person of great passion, and one of my greatest passions is the game of football and playing fantasy football. To you it may be just a game, but to me, it is so much more. It is ballet, a beautiful choreographed dance and true poetry in motion. It is Love Actually, Vogue Magazine, Sex and The City, it is Beyonce. It is truly a thing of beauty. It is art.
While you may see a violent game, a simple game, in reality it is anything but. It is often stated that Football is 80% mental. It takes years of film study and practice to master complex techniques, formations and plays. Take the wide receivers for example, those are the guys that run down the field and catch the ball. The best athletes are not always the best wide receivers and many of the most physically gifted wide receivers in college often flame out in the NFL. To succeed in the NFL as a wide receiver you need to master the craft of getting off the line of scrimmage with proper hand technique and footwork to gain separation. You then need to be able to read the defense while you are running at full speed and use your footwork and technique to make the right move in order to break down a defense and get open to catch the ball. Even then, it is about mastering the timing and anticipation of the quarterback to put you in the best position to finally make the catch with the proper placement of your hands and body. A wide receiver studies and masters all of this the same way a medical student studies and masters the art of surgery.
World-renowned UC Berkeley professor of sociology, and former San Francisco Forty-Niners advisor, Harry Edwards, teaches that the ability of a receiver like Jerry Rice is just as genius as any brilliant physicist. A physicist can look at a complex physics problem and solve it in the same way a professional athlete could run down the field and catch a football.
Jerry Rice could run full speed, dissect a defense, turn on a dime and catch a pass 40 yards down the field being thrown at him at 50 mph all in seconds. He could intrinsically calculate and process how to do all of this literally in mere nanoseconds. Yet no matter how much the physicist could break down the physics of what Jerry Rice was doing, there was no way for him to replicate the feat. Jerry Rice may not have been able to solve a physics question, but the physicist could not replicate Jerry’s abilities when it comes to playing football. They may do different things, but both are geniuses at what they do.
Another example of the complexity and beauty of the game can be found by watching quarterbacks initiate an offensive play. I’m sure you have heard of some of the famous quarterbacks such as Tom Brady and Peyton Manning. Watching Peyton Manning do intellectual battle with an opposing defense is a sight to behold. It’s a choreographed dance.
One of the great battles over the years has been Peyton Manning leading his offense against the New England Patriots defense coached by Bill Belichick. It’s truly a game of chess as Peyton Manning reads the defense and then starts calling audibles at the line of scrimmage, shuffling his players as he alters a play before the ball is snapped to try and beat Bill Belichick’s defense. On the other side of the ball, the Patriots Defense is reacting to the movement of the offense. Watching the two teams move and countermove is truly magical. It’s a game of disguise and calculation as Peyton Manning tries to get his players in the best position to win once the ball is hiked and the play starts, while the defense tries to hide, disguise and fool Peyton Manning.
Yes there are big tackles that make highlight reels, but these plays are just a small portion of what makes football so thrilling. It is the art of the sport that we truly love.
The best part of all is that fantasy football allows use to live out our football dreams and participate in a sport we love by building our own teams and competing against other fantasy players in our own game of chess. Scouting, drafting, trading and acquiring different players that we feel gives us an edge to beat our fellow competitors. This is not a game of luck, but a battle of wits and a game of skill. And like anything in life that requires great skill, fantasy football requires putting in the time to master our own craft. This is why it is necessary that we read articles on Footballguys, watch video clips, listen to podcasts, study film and most importantly, watch the football games as they happen.
I hope, dear loved one, that you realize that you are such an important part in my life. You understand me like nobody else. So I thank you deeply for allowing me to pursue, and master, this passionate art form called fantasy football.
Now pin this to the fridge and don’t look back. Time to play!
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