Thursday, September 12, 2013

The BenJarvus Green-Ellis Incident

Our family is crazy about football. Because of our great love of the game, we have played fantasy football for years. This year, my son "fired' my husband as his co-manager and picked me up as his helper instead.

The main reason for this personnel change was the draft philosophy.

My husband is a by-the-book drafter. He follows the recommendations of the "experts." In my son's league, my husband was drafting for one of the kids who couldn't make the draft. He picked three running backs and then three wide receivers. He didn't panic and jump out for a QB just because other folks were picking them up. He followed his plan, picking the best player available at each round.

My philosophy is that I want players on my fantasy team that I actually LIKE. As a Packers fan, I will NEVER draft Adrian Peterson, even if I have the first pick in the draft. I won't bother with players in the NFC North unless they wear green and gold. I've been in leagues where I picked Aaron Rodgers "ridiculously early" by the expert's advice. But I knew that if I left that draft without Rodgers, I would not be looking forward to playing fantasy football. So, when my son wanted Jimmy Graham in the second round, I said "Go for it." He had Graham two years ago and loved having him on his team, but he missed out on him last year. When he wanted Reggie Wayne in the third round and Andrew Luck in the fourth, I said, "Sure!" What's the point of playing fantasy football if you can't root for some guys from "your team?" The other, older players in the room kept their scoffing to a minimum and my husband kept his comments about our picks to himself.

Then, in the 5th round, my "go ahead, pick with your heart" philosophy hit a snag when my son said he wanted to draft BenJarvus Green-Ellis. With the 43rd pick in their draft. On our list, Green-Ellis was the 36th ranked running back. There were still lots of better-ranked RBs available at this point in the draft. My son's not even a Bengals fan or anything. I have NO CLUE why he latched onto this player! This was going to be his last pick for 14 picks! But he was adamant. And it was ultimately HIS team and HIS draft.

This early in the season, it remains to be seen if this will be a good pick for my son, or if it will always be referred to "The BenJarvus Green-Ellis Incident" in our home. What I do know is my son left his draft happy, looking forward to playing fantasy football this year. And that's all that really matters to me.

My husband read me this article over the weekend about fantasy-football expert, Matthew Berry's experience of drafting with his son. I'll let you decide based on my story and his which is a better draft plan - follow the plan or follow your heart. But I imagine he will hear about "The RG III Incident" at his house for years to come.

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