Listless: Fantasy football tips


There’s a lot of fantasy football-related information out there. Practical analysis, head-to-head comparisons and the like capture the imagination of many a sports fan this time of year. The question is, though, what do all those dandies really know about the fine sport of un-sport? I, your intrepid Listless contributor, eschew those traditional notions of numbers and reasoning to bring you practical advice for your squad based on the purest chart of all: instinct.

Five surefire tips for a better fantasy football team.

1) The close-and-point

Known in some circles as the “Jesus, take the wheel” method, and in others as the “Never Back Down” (honoring the filmic triumph of same name), this is a method in which one builds his squad and, like that one scene that was maybe in The Karate Kid, shuts his eyes and simply points at a screen. If you are fated to start Adrian Peterson, it will be so. Fate led me to Jamaal Charles, who respectively got his shit pushed by the Detroit mascot and received the creepiest fantasy football ad of all time. Any boy can pick LeSean McCoy and Peterson to start, but a man doesn’t back down. He emails Yahoo and demands answers as to why Barry Sanders is not presently eligible. Failing that, he hacks the system and makes sure that Sanders will damn well play, and put up four TDs per week. When he’s arrested for hacking into a protected database, he punches a cop in the neck. That is called letting fate play your hand.

2) Let your dog set your lineup.

Fun fact you may not know about dogs: In addition to their unsung horticultural skills and subtle methods of always showing up right when you happen to be having sex, they’re also really good at picking weekly lineups. For instance, last week my friend’s bulldog Archibald started barking at Matt Stafford’s stats page, just hours before he and the Detroit Lions ran a train on poor Kansas City. Based on this, I have reached the conclusion that dogs only see in black and white, except for when conveniently relevant and useful colors pop out to them. I will be exploring this hypothesis further in next week’s column on my Turner & Hooch-themed bounty hunting venture.

3) Don’t start Sebastian Janikowski.

I don’t care if the Oakland Raiders’ entire offensive strategy involves kicking more field goals than the actual touchdowns other teams put up. The guy looks like his life goal is to kick everybody’s girlfriend in the stomach.

4) Select teams based on their commonly played stadium music.

Never the Bears, based on the ubiquity of “Crank Dat Soulja Boi” at Soulja Field. Anybody else is eligible based on an algorithm I will not share which calculates the ratio of Queen songs against those by the Baha Men, integrated with careful gut reactions to the level of “hyphy” I observe at any given NFL stadum.

5) Start everybody who’s playing against the Kansas City Chiefs.

No punchlines here, folks. They just really, really suck. The same could be said for the Jacksonville Jaguars, who aren’t even allowed on TV in their own town. Or anybody defending against the Chicago Bears, whose offensive scheme seems to be based upon the overwhelming desire to watch Jay Cutler cry.