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Fantasy football: How much is luck?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Dick Whitman, Oct 16, 2012.

  1. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Perhaps this topic isn't big enough to warrant its own thread, but it's something I've thought about, so here goes ...

    I participate in fantasy football, baseball, and basketball. Of the three, it seems like football is by far the most difficult to succeed in by outpreparing my opponents on both draft day and throughout the season. I think this makes sense. In basketball, in particular, players largely do what you expect them to do. Baseball, too, though to a lesser degree. In football, though, with its reliance on touchdowns for points, a player's value can fluctuate wildly from one year to the next. And, in particular, one week to the next. I'm sure that the roto format of most basketball and baseball also help normalize the luck factor. There's also, frankly, a lot more math involved in baseball and basketball. You can outwork and outsmart your opponents analytically in ways that football, as basic as the format is, does not lend itself to. In football, the intricacy is in the schemes, which doesn't translate to fantasy.

    Basically, I'm curious: Do the rest of you find football as frustrating as I do, relative to other fantasy sports? Or is there something I'm just not kind of "getting" in football that I do in the others?
  2. Big Circus

    Big Circus Well-Known Member

    The cream also rises to the top more in baseball and hoops because of the daily nature. You have to pay attention to more games, and games during the week. I consider myself to be a relatively avid fantasy baseball player, and I have a hard time actively finishing out a season if I'm not in the hunt.

    Football, you can just set it and forget it. The time commitment isn't nearly as big.
  3. Guy_Incognito

    Guy_Incognito Well-Known Member

    I agree and by a lot. Football is least subject to being accurately reflected by it's statistics, and the high stakes TDs warp things.
  4. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    Fantasy football is entirely dependent on matchups. Stevan Ridley had two 100-yard games in a row and I benched him last week because he was going against the Seahawks. And it was a good move on my part.
  5. JakeandElwood

    JakeandElwood Well-Known Member

    Football is by far the most luck based.

    YGBFKM Guest

    Skill when I win, bad luck when I lose.
  7. Bubbler

    Bubbler Active Member

    The luck part of it comes into play with your opponent too. You can have a great week, but if they have a greater week, all of the "planning" you did is for naught.

    Cuts the other way too, you can have a shit week and get away with it, but I think the former happens more than the latter.
  8. PopeDirkBenedict

    PopeDirkBenedict Active Member

    The variance in W/L -- which Bubbler identified -- is one of the reasons I eventually gave up playing fantasy football. Your W/L aren't really reflective of your team's strength. It became such a crapshoot that I lost interest.

    The one type of league I always wanted to try is this: you play every team every week. Lets say you have an eight team league and you score the third-most points in week 1. You have five wins (over 4-5-6-7-8 in points) and two losses (1-2 in points) after week 1. That would reward actually building a good team.

    There are also fewer "guaranteed" fantasy producers. I started playing in the mid-90's. Back then, Jerry Rice, Steve Young, Brett Favre, Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders, Marshall Faulk, Curtis Martin, Cris Carter, Herman Moore, etc., were all guys you could count on to produce on a weekly basis. I am not completely up on fantasy football, but is there even a consensus number 1 overall fantasy player right now in the NFL?
  9. king cranium maximus IV

    king cranium maximus IV Active Member

    The draft is everything for fantasy football, especially if you're in a big (12-team) league that doesn't do keepers. If you don't nail the RBs on draft night, forget finding game-changing guys on the waiver wire.

    A couple years ago my 1-2-3 were Michael Turner, Jamaal Charles, and Hakeem Nicks. No one else stood a chance after that.
  10. Bubbler

    Bubbler Active Member

    The major change in fantasy football in the last three or four years is the waning popularity of the featured running back and the propensity for several teams to platoon at the position.

    How many teams have one featured back? I'll bet its dropped down to no more than half.

    Running backs are a major source of points in most fantasy leagues, but it's rarer now to have a running back carry the load on an every week basis.

    Moreover, if you have a running back injury, the replacement choices are few and far between because most of what's left is crap. Obviously, this is truer if you have more teams in a league.
  11. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    This is mostly true in getting to the "playoffs" but not once you're there.

    I had Rodgers last year -- picked him eighth which was about his average draft position. Obviously that by itself locked up the points title for me (especially since I also got Gronkowski very late). But in our first playoff week, that's when McCarthy decided they should run the ball against Kansas City, Rodgers had his least productive game of the season and I was out. That happens a lot in the fantasy playoffs. And then for the overall points I had to survive without him since he sat out Week 17.

    The other thing that happens is guys start sitting out. Most leagues don't go to Week 17 for this reason, but in many cases Week 16 is even questionable for the top players on teams that have already clinched. I'm already looking to trade some Texans for that reason. Again, it's so random but you can't always count on your top draft pick in the most important games.
  12. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    This is starting to happen in basketball, too, though it's not quite as big of an issue because the importance of those games is not magnified because of fantasy playoffs.
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