You may have heard about it, but there was an election last week and both candidates did a lot of talking about change. My guess is that you will read a lot of fantasy articles that jump on this theme. We fantasy writers love nothing so much as a theme for a column, so it's time to change your team; time to change your strategy.
But this isn't going to be one of those articles. You'll also read a lot of other writers who do what I'm doing here: complaining about the preponderance of those kinds of columns. Instead, I'm complaining about articles complaining about articles. How very meta!
In truth, we are at a fairly critical point in the season -- but change isn't for everyone. Clearly, if you are dominating your league, there's no reason to pull a Crazy Ivan and do something brash. There's a reason why a lot of NFL coaches try to get to a point where they can just run the ball and let the clock run out.
But what if your team is in the dumps and you're in a keeper league? You should be doing what you can to get guys like Tim Hightower, Steve Slaton, and Eddie Royal. Everything depends on your league rules, of course, but if you manage to own LaDainian Tomlinson or Clinton Portis and are out of it already, why not offer one of them up for a pair of guys you could protect for next season? It's trades like this -- and indeed, the planning and plotting of them -- that make keeper leagues so uch fun for all the owners. Not only can everyone stay involved much longer in the year (even if they, say, drafted Tom Brady, Steven Jackson and Marques Colston), but teams in the lead have to stay doubly focused.
You think you have this season in the bag? By the way, the guy right behind you just got Portis for his third receiver and backup running back!
I think that's all change we can believe in. (Darn it, now I'm doing it!)
The reality thing
I should get this out of the way right now -- there's a new show that I'm in love with. It is, of course, Celebrity Rehab, back for its second season. It's not funny in the sense that these are people going through real pain, and addiction isn't something I'd wish on anyone, but ... then there's Gary Busey. He states that he's been sober for 13 years, but still uses medical marijuana -- and what's more, he began the show thinking that he wasn't there to get help but, instead, to act as a counselor. It's not entirely clear yet whether he's figured this out. That's just way too interesting to watch. And while Tawny Kitaen has regrettably not aged well, Amber Smith looks better than anyone I've ever seen going through withdrawal. (In truth, I've never seen anyone going through withdrawal, but given that I don't know anyone who looks as good as Ms. Smith on their good days, I feel pretty comfortable with that statement.)
Speaking of reality TV shows, there's none better than Survivor. And possibly the most intriguing story this season is that one team has a former 4 X 400-meter Olympic track star. Crystal Cox is perhaps the worst player in the game in recent years. Not only is she crabby and anti-social, but she's a terrible athlete! (I know!) There have been former athletes on the show before, with mixed results, but Crystal is truly the most disappointing. On the flip side, there's no one better than host Jeff Probst. If the guy could have officiated my wedding, it would have made that day even more perfect. Although his brutal assessments are spot on -- this week, he stated in an immunity challenge that "Sugar is out...after 10 seconds." I can only imagine him calling your draft: "And Tommy takes the Chicago defense with his EIGHTH PICK. That is a huge reach. Tommy is really struggling to maintain any sense of dignity!"
On the disappointment track, how bad do you have to feel for Ryan Torain? Or, if you want to be even more specific, how bad do you feel for the guys who stashed him on their bench for half the season? Torain immediately showed that he was worth that faith, rushing for a touchdown and 68 yards on just 12 carries. But then he tore the ACL in his left knee and was lost for the season. That's a real bummer, especially because he works for Mike Shanahan, who very well may have a new apple of his eye come next season. (If you think otherwise, I have a slew of names for you such as Mike Anderson, Cedric Cobbs, and Quentin Griffin.)
Bye bye Romo
This is the last bye week, and I think there isn't a fantasy owner in the league who isn't happy about that. It's benefited me as much as it's hurt, but there's nothing like gearing up for a weekend and realizing you have to scrape for your third wide receiver.
By the way, did you know that Week 11 is officially being renamed The Weekend of Tony Romo? It's true. Okay, it's not true, but it should be. His owners certainly are happy that he had a bye week during his injury because it limited the damage, and all indications are that he'll be ready to go next weekend. That's good news not just for his owners, but anyone who owns a Dallas player, because they've all been crushed by Romo's absence.
But don't get too excited. Romo has a terrible fantasy playoff schedule, going against Pittsburgh, the New York Giants, and Baltimore in Weeks 14-16. I'm not saying I'd sit him during those games, but enjoy the next three weeks first as his matchups are Washington, San Francisco, and Seattle. In fact, if you can time a deal right before the playoffs and stomach trading Romo away before such a critical game, it wouldn't be the craziest thing to do.
The other thing that makes me a little hesitant about The Weekend of Tony Romo? I celebrated Big Papi Day during the baseball season, and that didn't work out so well.
Then again, it's time for a change.
Matthew Greber knows a lot about change - if by change, you mean diapers. Which aren't all that fun to change, if it gets right down to it. Instead, Matt prefers answering mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Give it a try.