Just When I Think I’m Out…

I swore I was out.

I wasn’t going to be pulled back in. I was retired! I wasn’t going to let myself get dragged back into it.

I blame Gronk.

See, after finally winning a Fantasy Baseball league, I’d given up on Fantasy sports. I mean, when you’re a multi-time champion, having a title in each of the major fantasy realms, what’s the point of going back for more? The great ones know when to walk away, and with the 2008 victory of Lasorda’s Swollen Goiter (my team name), I’d conquered every mountain possible. I hung up my keyboard, walked away from the stats books and obsessive strategizing, and decided I would never, ever play a fantasy sport again. And all was right with the world…until 2011.

See, I always subscribed to the theory that to win a fantasy football league you need three things: A solid, but not spectacular Quarterback — one that’ll give you consistent points 12 out of the 16 weeks of the season, a star running back, and finally, a Tight End that can do some serious work as a receiver. Being a fan of the New England Patriots, I’d seen amazing TE’s like Ben Coates and Ben Watson light up the fantasy scoreboard for years – but neither held a candle to the superstar that is Rob Gronkowski.

Gronk is the type of player that comes along once in a lifetime — strong, fast, and juuuuust dumb enough to put himself in the line of fire on every play, always willing to take or make the hit necessary to move a play forward. As such, he’s a goldmine for fantasy owners – strong receiving stats, sure hands make him a constant target for Tom Brady in the red zone, giving him numerous touchdowns – all of which translates into a stud of a player for any fantasy team. Seeing him play last year and really develop into a true superstar, the fantasy bug started to grow again.

So this year, I resisted. I rejected invites to leagues at work, and didn’t want to get back into the game. Sadly, my resolve wasn’t strong enough to stay away forever, and I broke the week before kickoff. I signed up for a Yahoo and NFL.com league…swearing that this would be the last time. I set Gronk as my number one pick in each league, hoping to score a player that I know could turn the tide just by showing up. I’m pleased to report that Tom Brady’s Haircut have Gronk as their tight end, and in week one, put up an impressive 109 points to start the year 1-0. Unfortunately, my NFL.com team — Sad Tom Brady on a Waterslide — didn’t fair as well, so we’ve made some roster moves.

I swear, this is my last year of Fantasy sports. I swear it.

Say, did you see the game RGIII had against the Saints? He could be a stud next year…

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