The Year of the Phila Dumpster Fire Begins Now: rules to abide by going into this year's Fantasy Football season.

I should start with this: I am not good at fantasy football.

The only year I won was in 2007 and that’s because I rode the coattails and awesome-ness of the 2007 Patriots and their near-perfect season. Of course that year I was playing in a Philly league, with a bunch of rowers and there was no money involved. Besides that year, one year out of going on six years now, I have been damn near terrible. Since joining the prestigious Baltimore Premiere League, I have been a laughing stock, occasionally competitive at best and a frequent observer once the playoffs come around. Last year’s season became such a train wreck that I renamed my squad halfway through the season, changing names from the Banker’s Club Burn Doggies to the Phila Dumpster Fire. I just felt it was more appropriate.

But now the lock out is over! We’re game on for football this year and more importantly- all systems go for another season of fantasy football. With the draft later this month, I’ve already started planning it out. I’m reading columns and I’ve even listened to a podcast about fantasy football. One day last week, I took a few notes about how I’m going to do my draft. I need to do the research this year. Subpar drafts have done in me in each year; slightly more than tragic waiver moves have. In an attempt to be more successful this year and win some loot to buy my baby some jewels, I’m going into this year’s draft and season with a few simple and easy to follow rules.

Rule 1, The Tommy Football Rule: I’m avoiding any Patriot on offense besides Tommy Football. Even my man Wes Welker will be avoided and I’m not going to get fooled by Ochocinco. Bill Belichek is a fantasy owner’s personal nemesis- with significant others and poor internet connections as runners-up. What I love about him as a Patriots’ fan is his way of mixing things up and adapting to each week’s opponent. But as a fantasy owner, each of those things makes me hate him even more. Granted Danny Woodhead saved my ass a bit last year, but this year I’m looking for consistency, so as a result, I won’t be looking for any Patriots.

Rule 2, The Oh No Romo Rule: I am saying goodbye to Tony Romo, my team’s quarterback since my first season playing in the Baltimore Premiere League. It’s been an up and down relationship with Romo and last year it was a nothing relationship as Romo was injured for most of the season. He’s a tease and unreliable- one week he’ll kill it and give me 40 points, the next week he’ll be below 10 and wearing a stupid hat. I can’t have something like that in my life. Again- looking for consistency.

Rule 3, the Jammer Rule: last year I selected the Jets’ defense and realized by week two that there was no way we could stay together. I hate the Jets. I hate everything about the Jets and there isn’t one player on that team I respect (like Jeter with the Yankees and Peyton on the Colts.) So I was forced to find a good alternative and luckily I did, the Chiefs, who I ran with until the end of the season. I tried to trade away the Jets defense, but I frequently propose ridiculous trades and as a result, I don’t get many takers when I’m trying to be serious. So I was forced to keep them around, but only because I had too. I even think that this year, I will throw down a No Jets policy across the board for the Dumpster Fire. I’ll sleep better.

Rule 4, the Deep Breath Rule: patience is going to be my best friend this season. I pledge not to dip out on a dude based on only one bad week and I pledge to not waste all my waiver moves by week three. This rule might be the hardest one to follow, but I’m going to try.

For the most part, those are the only rules for this year’s draft and season so far. I’m going to keep Jamal Charles, but I’m not sure who else. Charles is my stud, but I’ve never even seen his play. Last year he was my favorite player and I couldn’t even tell you what number he is. But I’m bringing him back, even though running backs have become such wild cards. I wish I could draft 1989-1995 Thurman Thomas. Running backs have become the equivalent of closers in baseball. There is very little continuity from year to year. But Charles seems like a safe bet, so he’s sticking around. As for my second keeper, I’m still not sure about this. That is this week’s project.

My goal last year was to achieve respectability. Whether I did or not, you can ask the rest of the league about that. This year, I’m looking to win. I’m in an office more now, I’ll have more time for research and I’m going to be more prepared. This will be the year of the Philadelphia Dumpster Fire. It will.

And if it’s not?

Well there’s always next year. And the year after that. And the year after that.

Let’s go Mr. Jamal Charles. Let’s go win us a championship.

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