What is this ‘Fantasic Football?’ Who’s asleep?

Published 8:20 am Friday, August 6, 2010

I read in the latest Collier’s that the kids are playing ‘Fantastical Football’ or some such thing on the computer machine. I think they read statistical evaluations on mimeographs and whoever has the most marks for yardage and touchdowns gets phosphate at the drugstore. Or something like that.

In this game, there are what they call ‘sleepers,’ or footballers who overachieve during regular seasonal play, and help your fantastical football team to victory. It turns out, as a sportswriter, I am required by ledger to provide such ‘sleepers.’ Here are a few:

1) Jacoby Jones WR Texans

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This is a guy everyone has. He’s built like Andre Johnson but allegedly has the brain of Peter Warrick and has yet to put it all together. This season he has apparently looked good in camp, and will likely beat out token white receiver Kevin Walter for the No. 2 spot in a high powered O. Take a late flyer on him, but no higher than round 9.

2) Darrius Heyward-Bey WR Raidas

He was a bust last year, but its not his fault he went ahead of Michael Crabtree and was being thrown at (to?) by FatMarcus Russell (clever nicknames abound here at 4th-and-a-Mile). He’s big and fast, and reports are he’s doing really well with a decent quarterback throwing to him. But what really makes me think he has potential was actually an interview he did on a podcast where he seemed really bright and talked almost only about hard work and improving route running. Think the opposite of an interview with Peter Warrick. (Yeah, I got him twice.)

3) Lex Hilliard RB Dolphins

The sun will rise tomorrow. Everything by Tyler Perry will be terrible. Ronnie Brown will get hurt. I know three things, and these three things only. So with Run Ricky Rasta in either a primary or secondary role, Hilliard will play, and he’ll get carries. He’s got some bulk, and pretty good feet. Take him in the last round.