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My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy Football Draft, With Andy Behrens

Tennessee Titans star Derrick Henry rushes against the Houston Texans at the end of the last NFL season.
Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

My oldest fantasy football league turned 21 this year, and as our draft snakes its way through its long and boring late-middle rounds in a Google Doc, I have been thinking about how to feel about that. In some ways, it’s something to be proud of, just given that so many people I was friends with in college are still willing and able and eager to get together for something like this every year, even if it’s over Zoom. In another sense, it’s hard to be a grown-ass middle-aged adult updating your personal kicker ratings and think that all the hours of one’s life spent sighing, because a dear friend just chose Jermichael Finley, were especially well spent. It’s complicated.

It was a good thing, then, that we had returning champion and Yahoo Fantasy expert Andy Behrens back onto the podcast to pull me out of my reverie and get me—and Drew, and you—on P’s and Q’s about this year’s most urgent fantasy football questions. To Andy’s infinite credit, this is an informed, informative, and notably football-heavy chat, and it has plenty of room for some stupid stuff in the usual vein.

It is always heartening when our podcast about eating sandwiches and worrying is able to transition, however fleetingly, into something that borders on News You Can Use. It doesn’t happen that often, but because Andy is good at his job, this one is pretty squarely in that category. It was probably too late to save my team, which is already a baffling collection of AFC South goobers and running backs who will lose their jobs by Week 6, but Andy’s knowledge is so deep and his patience with us—with my insistence on talking about Daniel Jones even though it just makes everyone sad—is so vast that it still went down easy.

And, as befits someone who was our podcast’s first-ever guest last summer, he was able to get on our wavelength right away. We were talking about Darnay Scott before I even knew what was happening. Next week, there will be more time and space for the skronking idiocy and aimless digressions that have made this podcast whatever it is. This week, though, was about solving the more urgent and less existential questions that fantasy football tends to raise. Those lost years of fretting about drafting a third defense are gone forever, but my next opportunity to draft the third receiver on the Chiefs is just eight picks away.

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