the true tragedy of the nfl lockout: fantasy football

NFL LockoutMany are unsettled by the ongoing NFL lockout. But there is an even greater victim that results from the suspension of activities in the NFL: Fantasy Football players.

As University of Iowa business professor Jeff Ohlmann states:

“For many people, fantasy football has become a means to stay in touch with friends and family,” said Ohlmann, who uses fantasy football and other fantasy sports as a research and teaching tool, and also manages a team of his own. “Even if the lockout extends into the fall, I think that there will be many fantasy leagues conducting their drafts in late August and September.”

Fantasy sports has become big business in recent years and rakes in billions of dollars, and fantasy football is far and away the biggest of them. An estimated 20 million participants owned teams last season, and selling and marketing things to those owners has become lucrative. Time magazine reported that the average fantasy team owner paid $73 to join a league in 2009, and while companies like Yahoo! and ESPN.com offer membership in basic leagues for free, they add fees for premium services.”

As a fellow participant in Fantasy Football (Yahoo), I don’t know if I’ll play this season if the schedule is reduced. Fantasy Football keeps me into the season, the players, and the games. If I don’t draft well, and can’t effectively research that draft, or if the first few games are cancelled, I’ll not follow the action, lose interest, and not play.

So for the sake of Fantasy Football and statistics nerds everywhere, please end the lockout. Because it’s one thing to have drunk, die hard sports fans angry at you. It’s another thing altogether to have cyber nerds upset with you. We’re just as angry, but you don’t see us coming (probably because we aren’t burping the alphabet aloud and don’t smell like Jack Daniels).

Fantasy Football Lockout EditionAs an alternative, there is always the Fantasy Football: Lockout Edition:

“With Lockout Edition, you generate points on what a player does off the field, instead of on it,” said an ESPN.com representative. “Points will be awarded based on players who get charged with a DUI, murder, rape, possession of a firearm, possession of a controlled substance, animal cruelty, and so on.”

Top drat choices are expected to be Ben Roethlisberger, Plaxico Burress, Albert Haynesworth, Michael Vick, Kenny Britt, and others listed here in the NFL players criminal arrests database.

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