Too early to tell
Posted Sep. 14 at 05:52 AM
In addition to the NFL, I watched some college football this weekend. I was especially impressed with the way underdog Alabama beat up heavily-favored Penn State. It was a strong performance from a team that wasn't expected to win.
Yeah, I know. You're going to say that Alabama wasn't an underdog. They're ranked No. 1 and were favored to win. But you're wrong. I know I'm right because I conducted my own poll, and 100 percent of the people I surveyed predicted a Penn State victory. I only asked two people -- my friend and his wife, both Penn State alums -- but they both said the same thing. I assumed that meant Alabama was the underdog.
You think I'm being silly because I formed my opinion based an unreliably small sample size? Well, isn't that what you're doing right now? After one week (one game-hour of football) you're declaring some draft picks busts and some league MVPs. You're regretting some choices and patting yourself on the back for others. You can probably look back on your draft or auction and see where it all went wrong. And you can do all of that before week 2.
Even in the abbreviated fantasy season (usually 13 or 14 games), you've still played less than 10 percent of the year. While it's great to finally see your guys in action, don't overestimate what you saw in the first week. Things might not be as bad as you think. They might be better. Or worse. We really don't know. We all saw the same things, but there are differing opinions as to what it means. Arain Foster might be one of the best backs in the league...or he might be a great back...or a good back that can take advantage of a favorable matchup. Or the Colts defense might just be really, really bad against the run. Any of those scenarios are possible, and they'd all be important to know.
Maybe the 49ers are worse than we thought, or maybe the Seahawks are better than we thought. Or maybe it's a little of both. Sam Bradford looked good in his first start at home against the Cardinals. But maybe things will look different against the Raiders. Maybe the Giants aren't that good on defense, and maybe the Panthers aren't that bad on offense. We don't know yet.
What we do know is you're either 1-0 or 0-1 in your head-to-head leagues. Beyond that is really just speculation. I'm not telling you not to be happy or disappointed by what you saw. Go ahead and cheer your good performances and lament your bad ones. Reacting is fine; overreacting is not.
In other words, be careful with that waiver wire. Don't look to dump those "mistakes" just yet (except for Ryan Grant. Sorry). Be careful when trying to acquire the "good" players of 2010. You don't really know who they are yet. I know that being patient is boring, and exercising caution isn't all that much fun. It's bad to sit by do nothing when you could turn your losing roster into a winner.
But you know what's worse than that? Turning your winning roster into a loser because you panicked based on one week of information. It would be like betting heavily on Penn State because "everyone" told me they were going to win. I'm not going to risk my money based on what two homers say, and I'm not going to risk my fantasy roster over one week of football. I'm definitely concerned about some developments -- and happy about others -- but I'll save the panic for a bit further down the road, and I suggest you do the same. Good luck in week 2.
You can reach Michael Murillo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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