We spend the majority of the NFL offseason praying for the days to go by twice as fast as they normally do, all so we can draft our fantasy football teams and try to put last year’s losses behind us. But just as slowly as the new season comes, it’s behind us in a flash, and are we worried about the time that we’ve lost and the opportunities that we’ve missed to make our lives better? No, we’re more concerned with whether or not CJ Spiller is back and if he’s going to get us 20 points again this week, because that’s why we f*cking traded for him when his value was in the dumpster.
For most of us in traditional leagues that view Week 17 of the NFL season as fantasy football purgatory, this week marks the beginning of your playoffs. There’s very little we can do for each other from here on out, if you were lucky enough to make the playoffs. But we can take one last look at the guys who may have f*cked us out of our playoffs this week, while paying tribute to those who did us right and so, so very wrong this year.
You Probably Lost This Week If You Played Against: Alshon Jeffery (45 points), Josh Gordon (44), Peyton Manning (43), Eric Decker (40)
My big thing when drafting a fantasy team is pairing my QB with his No. 1 WR – I call it the Double Whammy because I’m so cool – but with Peyton Manning, your choices are vast when you’re drafting. Last season, I picked Eric Decker as his top target, but this year, had I had the chance to take Manning again, I would have probably gone with Wes Welker or Demaryius Thomas because Decker had a reality show, and that sh*t is season suicide to an athlete. But if you had the Manning/Decker combo – the Upper Decker, if you will – this week, then holy crap, you probably made your opponent cry.
I grabbed Alshon Jeffrey with my waiver pick around Week 3 or 4 in two of my leagues, and I love him so much, because he made me completely ignore the pain of losing Justin Blackmon. I just hope that Jeffrey saved some for the playoffs. As for Josh Gordon, how hard are the teams that “tried” to trade for him before the deadline kicking themselves right now? Like, do you think the Falcons and 49ers have watched him put up almost 500 yards in the past two games and wondered what he could have looked like on a team that isn’t stuck in perpetual clusterf*ck mode?
I hope Gordon stays in Cleveland beyond his rookie deal and helps take them to the playoffs soon. Now on to the suckbags…
The QBs That Broke Our Hearts: Matt Flynn, Geno Smith, Mike Glennon, Andrew Luck, Drew Brees, Andy Dalton, Eli Manning, Philip Rivers, Case Keenum, Tony Romo, Robert Griffin III
I made this week’s qualifications for inclusion “Pretty much any QB that finished with less points than Chad Henne,” but I still included RG3 because he has just broken everyone’s hearts this season, from the Redskins fans that thought he came back too fast to the Redskins fans who blame him for not healing fast enough. And somewhere in between there are the fantasy owners who took him as the last “sort of elite” QB option on the board – before the dropoff to Andy Dalton and Eli Manning – as they knew they shouldn’t get their hopes up, but what fun is fantasy football if we don’t convince ourselves that everything will always be better?
While I wouldn’t be concerned about one horrible performance by Drew Brees – that saved my ass, thank you sweet fantasy gods! – I would be very concerned about Andrew Luck. I’m a very superstitious guy, so I’m blaming Luck’s woes on his return appearance on Parks and Recreation. I don’t have a reason for this yet, but I’m standing by it.
The RBs That Broke Our Hearts: Danny Woodhead, Eddie Lacy, Giovani Bernard, Marshawn Lynch, Zac Stacy, Ray Rice, Darren Sproles, LeSean McCoy, Frank Gore
Marshawn Lynch was probably the biggest surprise of these duds, as all of the rest of these guys either had really tough matchups or are just mostly inconsistent. Eddie Lacy probably could have had a better day if the Packers had somehow invented a new form of medicine that fixed Aaron Rodgers’ collarbone in a matter of seconds or turned Matt Flynn into a good quarterback. Of course, Flynn is also a bad QB who got paid a whole bunch of money this season, so what the hell do we know?
The WRs That Broke Our Hearts: Jordy Nelson, Jarrett Boykin, Hakeem Nicks, DeSean Jackson, Marques Colston, Dwayne Bowe, Brandon Marshall, T.Y. Hilton, Antonio Brown, Vincent Jackson, Pierre Garcon, Victor Cruz
This Packers wide receiver situation is a mess, not that I’ve been starting Boykin each week, but it would be nice to have him for depth this week in case I make it past the first round in my leagues. Then again, I have Jeffrey, and I fully expect him to score 45 points each week, so I really don’t have anything to worry about.
Serious question, though: If you’re facing the guy who has Josh Gordon this week, how scared are you that he throws up another 200-yard game? I’d be at “pants-poopingly scared.” That’s amazing because he’s a Browns receiver.
I’m going to skip the tight end love – sorry, ladies – and get right into a few superlative fantasy football awards for this season, so I can wrap this up and get back to staring at my lineups for the next five days…
I want more like this!
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