Good Fantasy: Fantasy Football Tries to Clear the Air

Last month we reported on ESPN’s Jocular “Bad Fantasy” ads, and the response that came from our hobby. This time around it’s a Fantasy Football company that sat down with us here at Elsewhere Nightly to set the record straight.

Draft is a New-York based Fantasy Football app touting almost 500,000 downloads. Wanting to bridge the gap between people who score points in football and people who score points while wearing 16-gauge steel armor, they reached out to Elsewhere Nightly to talk about fantasy football and give us a primer on what they do. And more importantly, the similarities between RPG gamers and Fantasy Football players.

Winners Plan, and Planners Win

If you’re a LARPer you’ve done downtime research, crafting, or writing. it’s just a given. Every August fans around the world get ready for the National Football League to get back into action. Fans flock around their TVs in order to watch meaningless preseason games with the sole goal of researching in order to know which players to draft for their fantasy football league. If you’ve played more than a year of fantasy football you know how great it feels to score points and get close to that championship trophy. The truth is most people go a long time before finding that winning feeling and it has everything to do with drafting poorly.

Don’t Min-Max

If you’re playing D&D, then you know that a poorly-constructed character can limit your choices and potentially be your downfall. At first glance, that barbarian with a 22 Strength and a 5 intelligence seems like a good trade-off (Looking at you, Gavin). But yeah…it’s not. It hurts in the end. Similarly, every fantasy football draft is going to be stacked with super stars at every position. Who wouldn’t want Aaron Rodgers and Rob Gronkowski as the stars of their team? You could easily get them with your first and second round pick but the question is: should you? The answer is, obviously, no. Positional scarcity is the measuring stick that must be used while drafting.

Knowing your acronyms

Fantasy Football players, like us, use huge amounts of acronyms. For us, it’s STR, THAC0, AC, MP, and HP, but in Fantasy football it’s the alphabet soup of football positions. “In most fantasy leagues,” one of the Draft developers told EWN, “you start just one QB and one TE. In these same leagues you’ll frequently run out three WR and at least two RBs.” I don’t know what that means, but the guy seemed to know what he was talking about when he said it.

Play outside your comfort zone.

If I’m picking up a session of Vampire The Masquerade you bet your butt I’m probably hitting up a Tremere or a Ventrue. But these habits are hard to break and sometimes I have to remind myself that there are other clans.

Believe it or not, this kind of behavior applies in the fantasy football world, too. If you are a hardcore Chicago Bears fan it can be enticing to grab a guy like Mike Glennon to be your starting QB. What could be more fun than watching your fantasy team score points while your real life team scores points? Unless you love the Patriots or the Falcons, picking your fantasy team based on your fandom is a surefire way to lose your fantasy league.

Let’s face it, we’re all nerds

So what does this mean? It means that just because RPG gamers and Fantasy Football gamers are passionate about different things, in the end, we’re in it for the same things: the community, the fun, and the chance to step into the role of somebody cool, whether it’s a fire-breathing mage or a nitpicky football team manager. We’re in it to win it.

The biggest difference, of course, is that fantasy football doesn’t require costuming.

Thanks to Draft for reaching out to us and setting the record straight. Check out Draft here.

Part Time Rogue
About Part Time Rogue 83 Articles
Sam Swicegood is a freelance writer, marketing consultant, and actor based in Cincinnati, OH. He has been LARPing for over a decade. He is the author of Sci-fi RPG Cold Start, due out in 2018.

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