Amazing Kids! Magazine

Fantasy Football: Life Lessons Learned

By Derin H. Kirtman, grade 5


After receiving an invitation from one of my friends to join a fantasy football league, I discovered that there are many lessons hidden in its depths!

First, before you make decisions, be sure you know how something works. Look at what happened to me. When my team was drafted (that is, when I was assigned a team of players from the NFL), trades started being proposed. My team was good, so I got a lot of proposals. I really thought about the trades but realized it was a waste of my time because I didn’t know how the game worked! After I learned, I made smarter moves and had an even better squad.

Next, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Research before you make decisions. This is one of my favorite lessons because it happens to all of us. This is what happened to me in fantasy football. Now, and football fans are going to kill me, I picked up Julian Edelman (wide receiver on the Patriots) and dropped Doug Baldwin (wide receiver on the Seahawks). This was one of my worst moves in fantasy football because 1) Julian Edelman is injured and out for the entire season and 2) Doug Baldwin is a REALLY good wide receiver. Edelman is a really good wide receiver, too, which was why this got me. This shows two things: 1) that I didn’t research beforehand and 2) that it was too good to be true to find a player with such talent in the waivers (where you can get players put on your team that nobody has already chosen).

Always have a Plan B. If something unexpected happens, you need to have a backup plan. Just look at what happened to me. I had a star team. Then one day, arguably my best player got hurt: AARON RODGERS! He was out for the season. But I had a backup plan: Plan B. I had another quarterback, Matthew Stafford, just chilling on my bench. I put him in, and I was right back up at the top of my league. When I made that move, I knew that Stafford might get injured, too, so I went to the waivers and picked up a solid backup in Tyrod Taylor. I was set.

Last but not least, always ask for what you want or need. You have nothing to lose by asking because the worst thing that happens is that someone says no. In my life (all of 11 years), I have learned that asking is the hardest, but the most effective, thing to do. Just look at this fantasy football example: We were assigned our teams, and out of nowhere, one of my friends started proposing potentially lousy trades such as Matthew Stafford for Andy Dalton. Somehow, he asks one of my other friends to trade Tom Brady for Andy Dalton—not necessarily the best idea… But guess what? The other friend accepts it! He tried many times, and he finally got what he wanted. That just shows you that asking does no harm at all. And if they say no, you are no worse off than where you started.

In the end, I think fantasy football is a great game where you can hang out with your friends and just have some fun. But, if you follow the lessons I mentioned here, you will succeed both in fantasy football and in life!