Well, last week I published a Preseason Power Rankings column. It was an attempt at judging each manager’s draft, based partly on their predicted standing at the end of the upcoming season, and partly on their projected success rate in future seasons. As usual, I tried to keep things completely PC. I complemented managers on shrewd maneuvers, nudged people in the right direction when they may have gone off course, and generally just tried to engender a harmonious gaming environment.
Which is why I can’t for the LIFE of me understand why, since publishing said document, so much vitriol has been sprayed my way from every foreseeable direction.
Responses ranged from genuine indignation...
“I don’t understand how in the world my team could be ranked so low! What are you basing these on? Is there some attachment I might have missed that includes a scoring matrix??”)
to self-assured nonchalance...
“Haha, get your head out of your anus. My team is going to roll yours like a goddamn pie crust.”
to things that could seriously be illegal in some states...
“If I see you in public, I WILL shoot you. That isn’t a threat, it’s a law of nature.”
Luckily, I was able to procure the guy with the dancing pecs/exploding brain from the Old Spice commercials to act as my part-time security detail, a la Will McAvoy from The Newsroom. Additionally, I’ve cancelled all my credit cards, started poking eyeholes in my newspapers, and checked into a hotel under my pseudonym, Dr. Martin Van Nostrand.
The JDL - Week 1 Matchup Recaps
Yo Soy Siesta (Me) -vs- YouGotChunted(Chunt) - Might as well get this swampy grundle out of the way from the jump. The Sports Gods hate me. I’ve known this for, oooh, basically all my life. There’s no other way to explain things like Ki-Jana Carter, Tattoo-Gate, and every Reds starting pitcher ever. It’s my personal brand of Murphy’s Law, wherein Murphy is Joe Dimaggio in angel form and the Law is “anything that CAN go wrong with Reed’s teams SHALL go wrong, no matter how improbable, and in the most annoying-fucking-way possible.” It’s why I was allowed by the fates to spend yesterday afternoon writing about how one of the most OBVIOUS things the Bengals could do to beat the Ravens was blanket Torrey Smith with multiple defenders, and yet on the very-first-bloody-play from scrimmage Joe Flacco and Smith gouge our single coverage for a 50-yard a-bomb. Over the years, I’ve learned to just smile wearily and mutter “of course”, which is exactly what I did when Chunt’s team curb-stomped mine up and down Oh Please Make It Stop Avenue this weekend. Granted, his Peterson/MJD/Foster combo led him to a #1 overall ranking in my present tense power rankings, but that didn’t quell the sting. Now I have to endure thrice-daily text messages about how his team bangs supermodels and runs marathons and mine french kisses donkeys. Fantasy football is fun.
YouGotChunted (1-0) - 106
Yo Soy Siesta (0-1) - 77
Gem City Juicers (Drew) -vs- Coples Therapy (Jake) - Initially, my brother Drew was elated to find out he’d received the first overall selection in the draft. As legend has it, he locked himself deep in the recesses of my parents’ basement, alone with his stuffed animals and dirty laundry, only to emerge a week later with a clear and cogent plan of domination. This weekend we saw that plan spring into action. Evidently, Drew’s Master Strategy was “draft Aaron Rodgers, set Bengals auto-draft to stun, and proceed with the sandwich-making.” And while it’s unclear whether Drew ever finished that egg salad sandie, what IS clear is that a team that relies on Jermaine Gresham and BenJarvus Green-Ellis will almost definitely lose every single time. Jake wins this one handily after a huge game from Julio, but suffers a major blow to his already-thin running back corps (Fred Jackson).
Coples Therapy (1-0) - 101
Gem City Juicers (0-1) - 84
IpoopNurSoup (Brent) -vs- Revis&Buttheads (Elise) - In an impressive display of defiance (I had her rated pretty low), Elise’s team shot out of the gate with 104 points in Week 1, obliterating Yahoo’s projection (81) and basically putting out the “WHATTUP NOW” bat signal to the rest of the league. While Brent’s 87 points were respectable, he’ll need more from second-rounder Victor “The Drop Zone” Cruz (five points). It’s been said that my league notes can get people a bit riled up, but I never expected Elise’s squad to respond so emphatically to the challenge.
Revis&Buttheads (1-0) - 104
IpoopNurSoup (0-1) - 87
Urban Achievers (Glen) -vs- Wrinkled Brown Stars (Spaz) - As is the case in most football contests, this one came down to the quarterbacks. Now, I won’t pretend I know what happened with Cam Newton Sunday. At his 4pm kickoff, I was busy reacquainting myself with my beloved fall ritual of going apeshit over fantasy for the entirety of the one o'clock games, only to collapse into a hoagie-induced slumber during the late afternoon. From what I can surmise, Cam completed his descent from Cloud Nine, only to crash head-first into a mediocre team from Tampa and ultimately doom Spaz’s youth movement. Glen didn’t get much from Eli either, but Shonn Greene took a vacation from sloth for a day to put up 15, and that proved to be enough.
Urban Achievers (1-0) - 84
Wrinkled Brown Stars (0-1) - 80
THE MACHINE (Tim) -vs- Cromartie’s Kids (Howard) - Two impressive point totals from two teams I expected to be impressive. For Tim, Michael Vick showed why he’s regarded as such a fantasy weapon. Despite throwing four picks, attempting to throw like seven more, and perfecting the “please end my career” headfirst slide, Marley and Me managed to put up 17 points. On Howard’s side, Drew Brees continued his ongoing campaign to make New Orleans forget about hurricanes/toothless citizens by putting up a solid 20-spot. In the end though, this battle came down to Andre Johnson vs Greg Jennings, and in an all-time role reversal, Jennings left limping badly. If I’m Tim, I’m happy about the win but concerned that injury risks like Vick, Johnson, Kevin Smith won’t always be there to carry him.
THE MACHINE (1-0) - 96
Cromartie’s Kids (0-1) - 90
you already know (Jen) -vs- NoVA Bath Salts (Don) - It’d be one thing if Jen and Don hadn’t spent the week exchanging friendly banter which steadily escalated into not-so-friendly banter until finally arriving at people threatening to eat each other's body parts. Or, if Jen hadn’t spent the week leading up to the draft wringing her hands over her strategy and grousing about how it wasn’t fair that all the boys knew so much more about football than her (“Isaac Redman? Who the f%ck is Isaac Redman??”) Unfortunately, both of those scenarios absolutely happened, leaving the Journeywoman high and dry when her team barely managed to outscore the ACTUAL Baltimore Ravens. Of course, it didn’t help that Don’s squad (ranked by me as the WORST team, as it pertained to success in the current season) got double-digit contributions from unlikely sources (Demaryius Thomas, Stevan Ridley, Malcom Floyd). All in all, Jen exited the match-up feeling almost exactly the same as Ralphie when he realized the message he’d finally managed to decode was nothing more than a crummy commercial. Son of a bitch.
NoVA Bath Salts (1-0) - 105
you already know (0-1) - 44
Tune in next week as the JDL web continues to be spun. Hopefully by that time me, my wife, or someone in my extended family will stumble our way into a victory. Until then, the Domer-Shank flag will be at half-mast.
JDL Commissioner and Fantasy Simpleton