By: Kara Owens
Week 14 signals the start of the playoff hunt in Fantasy Football Leagues around the country. While fans are cheering on their hometown teams, fantasy owners bask in the glory of advancing to the first round of playoffs. For their success to continue, owners must pour countless hours into analyzing the player matchups and pay close attention to outside factors affecting each game. They must position players into a winning lineup, hoping to move forward towards the Championship Game.
The abnormally crisp air in Miami Florida quite possibly gave Jay Cutler’s arm the extra spark he needed to get the job done on Monday Night Football. Two AFC rivals came to battle in a divisional game that is known for unpredictable endings. Grounded fantasy owners certainly had an unsettling feeling, knowing the New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady doesn’t always have guaranteed success against the Dolphins. He is now 7-9 as a starter, in Miami, for his career. His less than stellar performance was still the best on the Patriots side of the ball. The game began with Miami Dolphin’s Cornerback Xavien Howard letting Brady know, he would be what the hype was all about after the game! This future star forced two interceptions, and the Dolphin’s defense halted Tom Brady’s ability to complete a single third down conversion throughout the entire game.
In preparation for this game, frantic fantasy football owners scrambled through the leftovers on the waiver wire, locking in a replacement to fill the gaping hole that losing a dynamo like Rob Gronkowski would inevitably leave. Last night’s performance clearly displayed the absence of Gronkowski. The Patriots paid, for his inability to control his frustration on the field last week against the Bills. For some fantasy owners, losing Gronkowski meant the end of having the winning recipe to place a “W” in the quarterfinal playoff round column.
I curiously stare at the screen of my fantasy team and wonder, what is currently on the minds of fellow owners who have built their teams around the undeniable talents of the Patriots offense? Was last night’s loss due to the coaching staff over thinking their game plan? Maybe the unavailability of Flowers and Gronkowski affected the team’s momentum to perform at a higher level. Losing to the Miami Dolphins may have only been a slight hiccup in the team’s voyage to secure another ticket to the grand finale nevertheless they face a team next week ready to give their aging quarterback a fairy book ending to his career; with one more Super Bowl ring. Fantasy owners should have quite the sweaty palms when placing that final player into that last position! This season they have poured numerous hours into researching their game plans and have endured endless nights of trash talk from fellow league owners. Victory is close at hand, then again, the unpredictable outcome on any given Sunday, leaves all of us reaching for another beer.
#dolphins, #patriots, #nfl, #fantasyfootball