The National Football League will continue NFL Thursday Night Football games going forward, according to league commissioner, Roger Goodell. The commissioner spoke yesterday and said that the league has done more than its’ fair share of injury related studies to the quick turnaround from Sunday to Thursday games, and has discovered no correlation between added injury concern.
Unfortunately, the league continues to dismiss taking into account the feelings of its’ most popular and dedicated fan base, the fantasy football owners throughout the world.
Joking aside, I have many mixed feelings when it comes to the NFL Thursday Night Football games. While having an extra night of football is great, it can be a headache for fantasy football owners who are faced with difficult decisions that can impact their entire weekend.
Who am I kidding? It effects more than just your weekend. If you lose a fantasy football game in a league – shall we say, where more than just pride is at stake – do you really get over it in just one day? Of course not. You mope around and obsess about the lineup changes that you should have made that resulted in the difference between a win and a loss. We all do it, so you might as well own up to the fact.
But these Thursday Night Football games cause fantasy football owners to suffer through even more dilemmas in setting their lineups for the week.
First, you have to consider players who are on the NFL Injury Report for the Thursday Night Football game. Can you take the risk of playing them and having them not play or not play all that well? Watching the game and seeing your fantasy player limited or out or not producing is bad enough for the evening, but having to look at that zero or even one pointer for the next few days is disheartening.
Next, what if you have a healthy player going on Thursday Night Football, but a questionable player at the same position on Sunday or Monday? Do you roll the dice that your weekend player will be healthy enough to play and contribute, or do you sit him in favor of the healthier option on Thursday, only to see them do little and have your Sunday or Monday player go off and have a huge game? I made that mistake this very season, opting to play Kyle Rudolph instead of a banged up Jimmy Graham who missed the previous game. Rudy scored 1 point on Thursday, while Graham dropped 13 on Sunday.
I love the NFL. I love watching games, and I love playing fantasy football. I hate making decisions. Generally, because I make the wrong ones far more often than not. Making decisions on Sunday is hard enough, but at least there are far more resources going by the time the weekend games roll around. Setting lineups based on Thursday Night Football is almost like going in blind.
It is not easy. But what does the NFL care? Just like the coaches, the commissioner does not care about fantasy football.
If only they knew just how strong of a group we were.
Well, maybe that is a bit of an exaggeration.