Last Week's Question: Do family leagues
need special protections for youngsters?
In last week's column,
I asked whether family leagues that allow kids to play have any
special provisions to prevent other owners from fleecing the children
I only received one report of this ever being a problem. According
We've never had to interfere in trades between adults and children
in our league. Most of the adults go out of their way to make
sure trades benefit both partners. I did have to reverse one trade
between two kids. [My 14-year-old nephew] was trying to take advantage
of his younger brother. The adults knew better than to initiate
such a trade (or to let it stand).
A reader whose screen name is glc would presumably have supported
Marty's decision, as s/he recommends that "the commissioner
approve all trades [involving youngsters]."
Bill responded to my question about whether most family leagues
have some kind of tacit understanding about trading with kids.
Apparently there isn't a need for any such thing:
You've obviously never been in a family league that makes room
for 10 year olds. The adults in my family league don't take it
seriously enough to worry about trades. [These leagues] just give
the adults something to talk about and the kids a way to feel
Fair enough. Thanks to everyone for their feedback.
More Funchess? How is your league impacted
this week by the movement at the trade deadline?
This Week's Question: Whose
fantasy league will experience the greatest impact in Week 9 from
recent NFL trades?
But it's easy to lose sight of the impact of these unexpected
team changes in hindsight. Christine Michael has done his share
of midseason bouncing around, but I can't remember if I ever won
or lost any fantasy contests because of Michael suddenly appearing
in a different uniform.
So this week I'm challenging readers to pay attention to the
fallout in their leagues from the Benjamin/Ajayi/Garoppolo trades.
(With the suspension of Ezekiel
Elliott looming more certain than ever, Drake might crack
my starting lineup in one league.) Please don't limit your attention
to the players who were traded. If Funchess usually rides the
pine on your roster but you're starting him this week in Benjamin's
absence, please email
me or post a comment below, especially if you can attribute
a win or loss in your league directly to a midseason NFL trade.
After losing their first two games by giving up a combined 65
points, the New Orleans defense has been resurgent, keeping opponents
under 20 points per game. But when a division rival comes to town,
all bets are off. Don't let Tampa's record fool you; Jameis Winston
has thrown for 1853 yards and 10 TDs, which is just a hair behind
Drew Brees' productivity as a passer (1951 yards and 11 TDs).
If Winston's shoulder is mostly back to normal by game time, then
a divisional contest against a feisty opponent could be just the
recipe for snapping the Saints' five-game win streak.
#3: Seattle over Washington (4-4, BUF,
TB, CLE, NE, NYG, ATL, PHI, MN)
The Redskins, in spite of last week’s loss to the Cowboys,
remain the “other” team in the NFC East to watch out
for. Now that Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension has been upheld—a
game too late for Redskins fans—Washington has a major reason
to surprise the Seahawks after their 41-38 shootout with Houston.
After last week’s monsoon at home, rain showers in the Pacific
Northwest will feel like a summer day, even if game-time temperatures
hover just under 40. Seattle is built for these games, and the
Redskins definitely proved that they couldn’t prevent turnovers
in the wet conditions. As such, the nod goes to the home team
. . . grudgingly. This will be a true gut check game for both
teams looking to stay in the playoff hunt.
The Jags are a surprising 4-3 and in second place in the AFC
South behind the Titans (also 4-3). With Houston hot on both of
their heels at 3-4, the Jags need to win at home—something
they have done only once this year. Leonard Fournette (who racked
up over 300 rushing yards in just two weeks before being sidelined
with an ankle injury) should return to the backfield. Meanwhile,
Joe Mixon seems to have taken over as the primary back for the
Bengals—not that it matters from a scoring perspective.
When Mixon says that the Bengals “need to run the ball more,”
it's probably because a mere 8% of Cincinnati's points have come
via rushing touchdowns. The NFL average is 31%. Until the Bengals
figure out how to improve their running game, it's hard to take
them seriously—especially when they face defenses as stout
as their own (e.g. the Jaguars). Take Tom Coughlin’s Jags
as they make a run for the AFC South crown.
#1: Houston over Indianapolis (6-2 ATL, OAK,
NE, SEA, PIT, DEN, DAL, PHI)
The Texans return home after getting outgunned by Russell Wilson
and his Seahawks. The Colts aren’t Seattle, and Deshaun Watson is averaging four passing touchdowns per game over his
last four games. That combination alone should be enough for you
to pick this one. Without J.J. Watt, the Texan defense would probably
be exploited by Andrew Luck. But with Jacoby Brissett filling
in for Luck, the home team definitely has the advantage.
Mike Davis has been writing about
fantasy football since 1999--and playing video games even longer
than that. His latest novel (concerning a gamer who gets trapped
inside Nethack after eating too many shrooms) can
be found here.