Each year I find myself playing in a lot of fantasy football leagues. Some people have problems with that, you'll often hear that fantasy football isn't any fun if you have every player on one fantasy team or the other. I don't have that problem at all. My fantasy teams are prioritized by how important they are to me (usually tied to how many smack talking emails I'll have in my inbox on Monday morning) so I can keep track of who I'm rooting for each week.
One fantasy football problem that I do have though is my tendency to reinforce my own decisions from draft to draft. Each year I have my list of players that I focus on, guys that I think will do particularly well - for example, this year I like Ladell Betts. In my first draft I selected Betts, admittedly maybe a round earlier than he should've gone, but I needed a running back and they were flying off the board. The pick had some risk involved; after all what if Portis does come back at 100%? But I felt good about getting Betts for my fantasy team and considered the risk to be manageable.
In my next draft, I also had the opportunity to draft Betts. Now the risk analysis was less about Portis's knee and more about the fact that I had drafted Betts before. My mind started to justify the earlier pick:
"If I pass on Betts now, then that means I made a mistake in my last draft. Isn't he going to be great? Damn, did I waste that pick? No, no, I did the right thing. Betts is going to be the man, I was right last time."
And then I draft Betts again.
By the third or fourth draft, I'm so emotionally involved in the Betts pick being correct that Betts HAS to be a star, and I'd be a fool not to draft him again every time. Before you know it, I end up with Ladell Betts on nearly every fantasy team I have. Each time I'm reinforcing my own decisions because I'm afraid to admit that I may have chosen the wrong side of a risky pick. I should understand that I need to hedge my bets and pass on the risky pick, even if I go with another risky pick instead. But I usually don't, because I'm too stubborn to admit that I was wrong before one snap of the regular season takes place. I actually had to repeat "Don't Draft Betts, Don't Draft Betts..." to myself during the Fake Teams Reader League draft to try to limit my Betts exposure this year.
I don't know if other people have this dilemma, but I struggle with it every year. In fantasy football- like marriage - it can be hard to admit you might be wrong, especially to yourself.
By the way, Betts is going to be huge this year, just watch.