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Q&A - What a Long, Strange Trip It’s Been
Week 1

It is September, and my inbox is full of notes from people who are new to the world of fantasy football and have just discovered the FFToday website along with my Q&A column. Scott asks if I have ever written any columns about collusion. Janice wonders if any of my readers keep their fantasy leagues going during the NFL postseason. Chad wants to know if there are any FF leagues that don’t use kickers.

Fantasy football is an evolving phenomenon, so most questions about FF can stand to be asked more than once. However, most of the emails that I receive from newcomers to FF each September do not require me to reopen discussions that readers have had in this column over the years. The writers of these notes simply want me to direct them to the appropriate columns for the answers to their questions.

For a few years, I was able to keep a pretty good handle on which answers were in which columns. But I have been writing for FFToday for a decade now, and I suspect that a general index of the questions and answers in my columns will be as useful to some readers as it is to me.

For a complete list of my contributions to FFToday, please visit this page. The columns are listed in reverse chronological order. The Q&A series is my attempt to facilitate a discussion between FF players and commissioners, which makes the column a bit ragged from time to time. In most cases, a question is posed in one column and answered in the column that follows. Occasionally the discussion will require multiple columns. Every now and then I receive a really good answer to a question a few weeks after the discussion has moved in a new direction, so a commissioner with a single concern may have to sift through several columns in order to soak up everything that readers had to say about a particular question. The index below should help readers find their way to different topics, but once they get to the appropriate column, they will still have to do a bit of skimming and sifting.

This Week’s Question:
What is the most pressing FF topic that the Q&A column has neglected over the years that you would like to see addressed? For responses to this week's fantasy question please email me.

General League Categories

Scoring-only Leagues & Performance Leagues
Week 17 of 2004

Keeper Leagues
Week 9 of 2004
Weeks 14 & 15 of 2006
Week 14 of 2009

Auction Leagues
Week 3 of 2004
September of 2005

Defensive Scoring and IDP Leagues
Week 8 of 2005
Weeks 7 & 8 of 2006
Week 16 of 2006
Week 16 of 2007


Scheduling Fantasy Drafts
Weeks 1 & 2 of 2004
Week 2 of 2006

Missing the Draft, Drafting by Proxy, Automated Drafting
Week 6 of 2004
September of 2007
Weeks 1 & 2 of 2007
Weeks 1 through 3 of 2009

Draft Order
Week 2 of 2007

League Mechanics

Trading & Collusion
Weeks 10 through 13 of 2004
Week 6 of 2005
Weeks 5 & 6 of 2006
Weeks 9 through 11 of 2007
Week 15 of 2007
July of 2008
Week 1 of 2008

Retroactive Scoring Adjustments & Midseason Rule Changes
Weeks 16 & 17 of 2005
Week 17 of 2008
Week 5 of 2009

Unusual Scoring Categories & Practices
Week 13 of 2004
Week 16 of 2004
Week 3 of 2005
Weeks 13 & 14 of 2005
Weeks 9 through 11 of 2006
Week 12 of 2007
Week 10 of 2008
Weeks 13 through 15 of 2009

Fantasy Championships (and other matters related to Weeks 16 & 17 of the regular season)
Weeks 4 & 5 of 2004
Week 17 of 2007
Week 16 of 2008
Week 12 of 2009

Transaction Fees
Weeks 7 & 8 of 2004

Leagues with Multiple Conferences (Mega-leagues)
Week 14 of 2004

Playoff Seeding
Week 14 of 2007

Week 15 of 2004
Week 17 of 2006

Waiver Wire Activity & Roster Freezes
Weeks 5 & 8 of 2005
Week 12 of 2006
Weeks 6 & 7 of 2007
Week 11 of 2007
Week 13 of 2008

Injuries and the IR Category
Weeks 7 & 8 of 2005
Week 3 of 2006
Week 11 of 2008

July of 2006
Week 1 of 2006

Defensive Scoring and IDP Leagues
Week 8 of 2005
Weeks 7 & 8 of 2006
Week 16 of 2006
Week 16 of 2007

Fee Collection and Purse Distribution
July & August of 2010

Tools for Players & Commissioners

League-Hosting Services
Week 11 of 2004
Week 6 of 2009
Week 16 of 2009

Information Sources for FF
Weeks 4, 9, 10 and 11 of 2005
Week 4 of 2006


Trophies and Other Ways of Adding Flavor to Your League
Weeks 2 & 3 of 2005
Weeks 3 & 4 of 2007
Week 14 of 2008
Weeks 7 & 8 of 2009

Fantasy Football in the NFL Playoffs
Week 15 of 2005

Skill Vs. Luck
Weeks 13 & 14 of 2005
Week 13 of 2007
Week 16 of 2007

Week 8 of 2008
Week 9 of 2009

Women in FF
Week 15 of 2008

Fantasy Football in the Workplace
July of 2005
Week 1 of 2005

Popularity of Fantasy Football
Week 12 of 2005
Week 13 of 2006

Last Man Standing

Trap Game: Indianapolis over Houston
Never pick against the Houston Texans on opening day. They embarrassed this writer by winning their inaugural game against the Cowboys in 2002. They were terrible for the rest of that year and then surprised us all by defeating the Dophins in their first game of 2003. Even if you think that ancient history (under a different coaching regime) doesn’t matter, then you should bear in mind that this is a divisional match-up with the underdog at home (which is poison for LMS participants).

#3 San Francisco over Seattle
Both Seattle and San Francisco have worked to improve their O-lines this offseason, but Seattle’s major acquisition (LT Russell Okung) will be riding the pine for Week 1. The offensive line advantage is big for SF, but even bigger is the potentially explosive offensive talent of the 49ers. I have bought into the hype surrounding Frank Gore, Vernon Davis, and Michael Crabtree—and expect SF to coast to a divisional championship on the strength of that dynamic trio. It’s difficult to imagine how the Seahawks can keep pace with the 49er offense, but this game is yet another divisional match-up with the underdog at home, so my advice is (as always) to steer clear of it if you can.

#2 Tennessee over Oakland
This could easily be my top pick of the week. The Raiders are supposed to be drastically improved this year, but as a lifelong Raider fan I have stopped drinking the offseason improvement Koolaid that Al “Jim Jones” Davis pours for us every year. On paper, the Raiders really are improved, but there is something about team chemistry that just goes wrong in the Raider locker room. Maybe they picked up the habit from the Redskins, or maybe the Redskins got it from the Raiders, but Oakland always makes changes that look great on paper and translate to nothing on the field. The Raiders’ “commitment to excellence” has manifested itself for so many years as a special ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory that it is second nature for most of us to pick against the Raiders in Week 1 no matter who they are playing. The only reason I hesitate to make Tennessee my top pick is that Jeff Fisher’s teams very often get off to slow starts. They almost always finish the season strong, but the Titans love to dig holes for themselves at the beginning of the year.

#1 NY Giants over Carolina
The Giants are seven-point favorites over the Panthers for a number of reasons—not the least of which is that Carolina will be relying on the inexperienced Matt Moore at QB. Most coaches like to open things up for young quarterbacks by relying on the running game, which is terrible news for Moore because the swarming New York defense should have no trouble containing the Panthers’ rushing attack. This inter-divisional rivalry featuring the favorite at home is as close as the NFL gets to a homecoming game.

For responses to this week's fantasy question please email me.