The Fantasy Football Equivalent To "The Secret"

Ed SheahinCorrespondent IJuly 6, 2009

ATLANTA - NOVEMBER 9: Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints sets to pass against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome on November 9, 2008 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

I know what you’re thinking: "Here we go again—another one of those self-proclaimed fantasy football gurus who thinks he possesses the FFL version of the Holy Grail."  

However, that is not the case as it pertains to this article. As a matter of fact, no such fantasy football reference manual currently exists or ever will.  

Author Rhonda Byrne's cleverly wrote a book titled "The Secret", in which she embraces the importance of positive thinking and behavior thus creating positive energy particles—neutrons, electrons, and protons that make-up all things of matter and ultimately radiating positive energy to others—a cycle Byrne's believes brings peace, happiness, and tranquility to one's life.   

“The Secret” is a good book in theory, if you are one of the few who have a strong mind and can filter out all the negatives that surround us humans daily. But for those like me who are a traffic jam or a crappy boss away from possessing some highly negative particles, the theories behind Byrne’s book just won’t work.

You can say the same holds true in the world of fantasy football owners. Hundreds, even thousands of internet sites, magazines, newsletters, and cheat sheets flood our FFL world.  Most of them help in some little way, but rely on the perfect world scenario much like Byrne’s book.

I’ve been a FFL owner for over 20 years and during that period of time, I’ve endured one losing season and only missed the playoffs twice.

In the same fashion Byrne’s shared her life philosophies, I’ll share my FFL “Secrets of Success” with you eagerly anticipating owners.

Here is the answer you so desperately search for as a FFL owner—the one thing that will make or break your 2009 season. The elusive difference maker you seek is………luck!  Thank you and good night!

Okay, I can’t leave you hanging with a single word serving as an answer to FFL fulfillment. But the simple truth of the matter is, luck is the real difference maker in a FFL season.

Indulge me a second and allow me to elaborate. 

There are factors outside FFL owner’s control that, simply put, makes participating comparable to that of rolling the dice in Vegas.

For instance, injuries play the biggest factor in any FFL season. How lucky was the guy who drafted Tom Brady in your league last season? Prior to the start of the season, he probably felt pretty good about snagging a 50-TD pass QB with the third, fourth, fifth, or sixth pick last year. It only took two quarters to change that luck (and create plenty of negative particles).

Another factor is scheduling (head-to head leagues). How many times have you had a horrendous scoring week but won your matchup because your opponent was a weaker team? How many times have you lost a matchup when your quarterback threw five-TD passes and had over 400-yards passing? It happens, and there is nothing you can do to prevent it. 

For the most part, your FFL draft is a crap shoot. 

Last season’s mock draft will more than prove my point. If I gave you the first 10 picks in the draft, according to the experts at Fantasy Football Guide you would’ve probably selected the following players in no specific order:

Tomlinson, Peterson, Westbrook, S. Jackson, J. Addai, M. Lynch, L. Johnson, Brady, Portis, and Gore.

Only Peterson, Westbrook, and Portis came close to matching FFL owner’s expectations, and still fell short of their potential.

Now, with all that said, you can most certainly create your own luck by preparing for the season, but there are no guarantees. Following injuries and picking up key free agents in some way puts a little control in your hands. 

Looking at the schedule to see who your key players’ defensive opponents are in the playoffs can help as well. But no matter how much an FFL owner thinks he is prepared, you can’t control the luck factor. Just ask the Tom Brady owners who selected Derek Anderson as their back-up QB.

I will leave you with this, as you walk in to the local Barnes and Noble to read through the numerous issues of FFL magazines before deciding which one to use as your draft day bible. Unless it was published by Nostradamus, it holds the same value and insight as your hand-written cheat sheet.

Success in FFL comes with luck and reacting quickly to change (free agents and injuries).