This isn’t a post about how much I hate fantasy football and all the nerds who play it. I’m one of those nerds. Playing fantasy is just a fancy way of saying “I need some sort of gambling to keep my interest in this game.” Regardless of the fact that I couldn’t give a shit about your fantasy team, I still play fantasy football and enjoy contemplating suicide when something completely out of my control happens in a game based almost solely on luck. However, I do think there is something to the notion that fantasy football puts a damper on the actual game itself.
There’s been some really bad football this year. Whether you think it’s due to Thursday Night Football or injuries or simply the lack of talent at the most important positions is irrelevant. The quality of football is down, and without fantasy football you could argue that overall interest would be declining faster than the stock market in 1929. That doesn’t mean there aren’t still good games on TV, especially now when the NFL has the ability to flex games into the national spotlight. Earlier in the year when everyone cared more about their fantasy team than watching good games, this didn’t matter. Now fantasy leagues are deep in the playoffs, and those of us who have gotten boned by fantasy luck can sit back and enjoy the games.
We only get a few weeks out of the regular season when this happens. When you can truly stop worrying about your shitbag fantasy team and actually watch the games in full. No Redzone, no scoreboard watching, just watching giant men collide at insane speeds for our entertainment. Please resist the urge to create a DraftKings lineup if your season-long team is in the gutter. Fantasy football is like a drug, so I understand why you think you can’t watch the Bucs vs. Cowboys game without having some sort of stake in it. Just try it for one week. You’d be surprised how enjoyable good football games are when you’re just a fan.