I’m sure Castillo and J.P. might feel differently but it's hard to argue that a majority of what we've witnessed this postseason and especially in round 2 was sloppy, anger inducing, and soul crushing. You probably don’t want to hear me get all emo around here, put on my black trenchcoat, and type about fantasy football for the next 10 minutes, but I’ve been dumped by this league and my heart is broken into a thousand little pieces. This recap isn’t going to make you feel any better about playing this stupid game and based on the minimal sleep I got last night and the general shitty mood this league put me in, I have to question if you want to read much further. The amount of readers of these recaps have understandably diminished as we’ve gone through the playoffs and I actually have a new job that won’t allow me to find ways to type and edit for a good two hour stretch at work so this will be a basic, bitter, and depressing look at our semifinal round. Try not to slit your wrists in the process.
#4 I’m Your Huckleberry vs. #8 Graham’s Crackers
The problem with projected scores on the ESPN scoreboard is that they give you a false sense of hope. I know all the byes are out of the way, which means all the stars are playing, and all of this should lead to a lot of fantasy points and optimism when you check your phone. But do yourself a favor and just ignore the projections and expect the worst because there's not a worse feeling than thinking you have a game in the bag only to see your projected points fall like Hans Gruber at the end of Die Hard. Castillo was looking at a blowout victory based on all of the 100 yard, 1 touchdown projections he had for his RB’s and WR’s and when these yards and touchdowns never came, it sunk Castillo’s hopes as quickly as the projected score sunk. Luck wasn’t very good, Charles was banged up and not explosive, Watkins was crappy again, Donnell can’t be trusted, and the Rams D lost their magic. Thank goodness Le’Veon Bell stayed hot because outside of his effort, this team was pretty bad across the board. That opened up a hole for Ch. Marvel to blow through and if he was monitoring the projected score, he likely got a twinge of excitement when the Sunday night game kicked off.
Chris saw a potential shootout with the Eagles-Cowboys game, which helped him make the switch from Stafford to Sanchez with the hope that Sanchez and McCoy could find the endzone a few times to send this fantasy team to the finals. But here’s why fantasy football is so fucking depressing and stupid sometimes. We all know McCoy is the best running back on his team and based on recent history, he should be getting the ball pretty much everywhere on the field. This was the thought process when Chris drafted McCoy in September and relied on him in round 2. Fantasy football doesn’t give a fuck about that shit, though, as the Eagles kept knocking on the goalline and Chip Kelly kept giving the ball to anyone besides LeSean McCoy. Sproles vultured a touchdown from Shady and some bum named Chris Polk came in and stole two goalline carries which I can only assume sent Marvel to his basement to scream into a pillow and sob uncontrollably. These vulture carries not only burned McCoy’s projections, they also took away from Sanchez’s numbers, which were an awful 6 total fantasy points on the day. It ended up killing Chris’s hopes at the Granger Cup and we learned that once again you don’t always need your quarterback to carry you in the playoffs but you certainly can’t afford for him to bury you. Chris will again question why the fuck god hates him in this league and Castillo will hope his guys step their shit up next week.
#6 Dirk Diggler vs. #7 Nerf Turbos
I genuinely believe that John Fox lacks basic coaching knowledge and wherewithal when it comes to on-the-fly decisions during a game. He routinely fucks up challenges, is overly conservative, and is a pretty piss poor clock manager at the end of the half and game. And yet, he was coaching in the Super Bowl last year. Really good teams can make up for shaky coaches and that’s what we saw this week when Dirk Diggler’s squad was able to overcome the inexcusable oversight of playing Julio Jones and still manage to send J.P. to his fourth Fantasy Bowl. Of course we know that Jones didn’t play and of course it didn’t matter because some of his fantasy teammates stepped up and because J.P. is J.P. Matt Ryan kept chucking the ball to the tune of 25.1 points, which is pretty good considering that he didn’t have his #1 option. DeMarco Murray didn’t break any huge gains but he did break a bone, and he did get the ball around the endzone a lot, which led to two touchdowns and 20.4 points. Gates had another good game against the Broncos and the Broncos D held every Charger besides Antonio in check, which gave J.P. 14 more points. When Colston scored on MNF, it pretty much locked up a win and diZerega could then breathe a sigh of relief that his inability to make a kindergarten roster change on Sunday morning didn’t cost him money.
The commish has hung on almost every play this NFL season but with about nine minutes remaining in the Monday Night game, the commish willfully shut off his television. He couldn’t stomach any more awful Jay Cutler throws, any more Bears three n’ outs, or any more bad coverage attempts by the Bears secondary on Colston. The commish checked out, tried to catch up on some sleep, and it was only a couple of friendly texts later that alerted him to how close he was to pulling off a crazy win. And let me be clear, it was beyond garbage time when Jeffery came alive and it would’ve been a lucky and undeserving win for me. I’m not here to complain about how I got fucked because I’m far from the only fantasy owner that got burned by shitty performances this week but once you realize how close you were at a chance to win $1,000 and collect about $300 at minimum, it kind of pisses you off. If Jordy Nelson doesn’t drop the easiest, wide open-est pass I’ve ever seen, I advance. If Fred Jackson doesn’t drop a standard screen pass in that same game, I advance. If Eddie Lacy doesn’t get a 20 yard gain called back on a crappy holding call, I advance. I literally could go down the entire list of my players and find .6 points that I could’ve got but the problem with doing that is that I know J.P.’s team left some points out there as well. How many points, I have no idea but there’s no question that there was about 25 plays that could’ve changed the outcome of this game. If anyone wins the playoff MVP this year in fantasy, it probably should be the Bills D/ST that shut down Peyton Manning for 2.6 points last week and held Rodgers to 6.1 this week. There’s probably as many Manning and Rodgers owners playing in their championship game as there are Matt Ryan or Jay Cutler owners across fantasyland and this is yet another reason to hate fantasy football temporarily and one more reason to question why we spend so much time on a game that makes little to no sense at the most important part of the season. I too was lulled into a false sense of security by the projected points and was in such disbelief at the outcome that I checked my score four times this morning, hoping the score would change. Pathetic, really.
This is why we’ve allocated more money to the regular season and points awards and it’s another reason that we’ll all be excited about the possibility of getting hot in the playoffs next year knowing full well that more will probably go wrong than right. I'm not trying to wrap all this up by saying Castillo and J.P. are unworthy of advancing or that a fantasy football champion is 100% luck but what I am saying is that in the playoffs all that research, sound logic, and roster construction gives you only a slight advantage over anyone else in the big dance. The playoffs are pretty much a hail mary pass where eight owners settle under the ball and one dude gets it to bounce the right way into his hands. Sometimes, like last year, the bounce is true but more often than not it winds up in the hands of the guy that was in the right place at the right time.
I’ll try not to throw my computer out the window between now and this weekend and if I can accomplish that, I’ll punch up a little Fantasy Bowl XV preview that only two people are excited to read. Hopefully it'll be a little less ranty and a little lighter next time around. I know most of us want nothing to do with this game right now but I also I know most of us will be pretty excited to get back in bed with this succubus come next September. She's a dick crushing temptress, that bitch.