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Don’t Hold Your Lucking Breath

club-banner_wpBy The Commish

“With the first pick in the 2015 Skrip Club fantasy football draft, I select Jameis Winston, quarterback, Tampa Bay Buccaneers.”

The rest of the league’s reaction when Jillian proudly proclaimed the above probably mirrors yours right now. Laughter, mockery and shock filled the air and Josh, the co-host of the Skrip Club podcast (you can listen to our podcast here) pounced and scooped up Adrian Peterson with the second overall pick. It took about a round for the rest of us to recover and Jillian became the butt of many jokes.

During the season, Jillian quickly realized she couldn’t start Jameis and win it all. So she subbed in Carson Palmer and squeaked into the playoffs as the #5 seed. Three victories later, she was the champion of the Skrip Club, delivering the unlikeliest and luckiest season in our league’s history.

Yes. Jillian drafted Jameis Winston first overall and won the whole damn thing.

How many times have you pointed to others’ fantasy football success and howled about how lucky he or she got? How many times have you moaned to yourself and anyone who will listen that you have awful luck in fantasy football? I feel your pain. And I’ve found a way to twist the dagger, if you’re into self-tourture.

I’ve kept records of every players’ career stats in the Skrip Club – their win/loss records, playoff appearances, total points scored, points scored against… you name it, I’ve got it recorded. In addition to providing a kick-ass written history of the league, it also helps us understand patterns and highlights players’ skill and luck, or lack thereof.

In our first podcast (seriously, check it out here) I warned listeners not to take my advice on which players to draft because I’ve never won the league. Examining my historical performance in the chart below, however, shows that not only am I not giving myself enough credit, it confirms what I’ve been saying for years: fantasy football is 95% luck, 5% skill, and I have the worst luck in the Skrip Club.

Case in point – I’ve scored more total regular season points in the Skrip Club’s nine seasons than anyone else. Josh is second in points scored and he’s still 555.34 points behind me. That means I score, on average, 61.70 more points per season or 4.75 points per week higher than the next highest scorer.

I know, I know. What the hell does it matter how many points you score in the regular season if you can’t win in the playoffs? You’re absolutely right. But you have to actually MAKE the playoffs to WIN in the playoffs. And it’s really hard to make the playoffs when you have the most points scored against you over nine seasons. Just ask ME.

What happens when you have the most total points scored against you? You miss the playoffs more than half the time. You watch as people like Josh get lucky by having the 7th most points scored against him. You watch as historically low scorers like Sean win it all.

And you watch as you put together a 12-1 regular season, only to be bounced in the first round of the playoffs – with both losses coming from someone who drafted Jameis Winston first overall.

My advice to you to make your league more fun? Keep track of past seasons and share it with your league. Then you’ll truly be able to pinpoint who truly knows their shit and whose luck is made of it.

*Averaged Points for seven season of play and added to total

**Combined and averaged individual season after team merger in 2015

***This chart only includes 10 teams because two owners were replaced in 2015, thus only compiling stats for one season***