Why You Shouldn't Be Playing Fantasy Football: You Didn't Set Your Lineups


Every fantasy football player has had this moment of panic right when they settle in to watch some NFL action. You see Matt Asiata in the backfield for the Vikings, and it suddenly dawns on you that you never took Adrian Peterson out. This is a terrible feeling that's been magnified in recent years with the addition of a weekly Thursday Night Game.

Like most working class Americans, my day job is tedious, monotonous, and sometimes arduous. I'm ready to go home as soon as I turn off my phone's alarm—a 30-second clip of Big KRIT's, "Rise & Shine." I would prefer life to be like video games, where gobs of money and useful items are found in random treasure chests and trash cans throughout town. I can't even get too excited about Fridays because I work on Sundays, cutting my beloved weekend in half.

But I'm going to focus on the day before the weekend and present a scenario that includes you as the reader. You work an average retail job, and it's your Thursday to close. The shop closes at 8 pm, and it's abnormally busy an hour before the doors lock. It finally slows down, and you close up the business for the day at 8:05. It takes you 30 minutes to get home. When you get home, you remember the Dolphins and Bengals play tonight and you've got a wager on with one of the best online bookmakers. Pleasantly surprised yet unenthusiastic about watching a duel between Ryan Tannehill and Andy Dalton, you turn to the NFL Network because football.

And then it hits you. You left Jarvis Landry in your fantasy football lineup. Now "I've Got JJ Watt's Back" or whatever semi-clever name you thought of for your team is at a disadvantage headed into Sunday. It's because you made the very easy mistake of forgetting the Thursday games not only exist but count towards fantasy stats. Congrats. When the owner of "Jim Bob's Cooter Cats" is gloating in your text messages, he's going to ignore the fact you forgot there was a game. It's okay. Your 1-3 start doesn't doom you in the league. I mean, you can't control how the players you selected will perform. But that's the fun, right? Right?

—Johnathan Tillman

As a West Coaster, the fantasy football lineup setting struggle is very real. Aside from the aforementioned Thursday Night slip ups, remembering to set lineups on Saturday night or waking up early Sunday morning to make last-second injury adjustments.

This dawned on me when I trudged in to work for the 6:30 AM game in London on Sunday morning between the Colts and Jaguars. Waking up to do the job that I love was tough. Waking up at that hour just to make sure Andrew Luck was playing and in your lineup? Yuck.

Games in the Pacific Time Zone typically already start at 10 in the morning. That’s not heinously early, but on a Sunday before the work week starts, it’s nice to sleep in and then take your time waking up before shuffling to the couch for a day full of football.

Waking up extra early is absolutely not fun, and one of the many reasons I’ve not regretted quitting fantasy football. Try waking up on a Sunday stress free for a day full of stress free football watching. It’s an incredible feeling that tops even the most satisfying fantasy victories.

So whether it’s forgetting to set your lineups mid-week or needing to wake up super early on your day off, there are benefits to quitting fantasy football. Don’t just take our word for it. Try it sometime. It’s wonderful.

—Kyle Madson

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