As fans of the Steelers scattered throughout the world it is important that we take a moment to adequately prepare for our upcoming fantasy drafts. We are near the top in our knowledge of football and our love for our team knows no bounds. But as fantasy football owners we must protect ourselves against ourselves. And therefore, I have created a list of DOs and DON’Ts to help you navigate the minefield of being a Steeler fan on draft day – both envied and hated throughout the land.
First of all you must remember that a good year for the Steelers does not equate to a good fantasy year for any of its players. You must also remember that a Steeler win and a good season is always more important than your fantasy team. That said, your head must be in the right place on draft day. I know you are upset at the projections for Ben’s production and the ADP (average draft position) for all other Steelers offends you… I also know you know we never win big or fancy or with gaudy numbers – and we don’t care. But your heart is telling you that this year we can have both. On draft day you must squash those feelings… and be smart. Use your head!
BE TRUE FAN.
You must. Not you shall, or you should, or you may… you MUST have at least two Steelers on your roster. You can do this effectively and with great success if you remain patient. This loyalty may cost you a few roster spots but it is a small price to pay to be a true fan. It is acceptable to pick up these two players in the later rounds as backups. They do not have to start each week – they simply need t be on your team.
Secondly, If you are not living in the Pittsburgh area your team name must have a Steeler or Pittsburgh connection. (I’m in Delaware my team name is DE Stillers). You must represent at all times.
HAVE A POKER FACE. I realize this is difficult with your team name and the wearing of your new Antonio Brown jersey to the draft (even when you draft remotely), but you cannot let everyone in the draft know you covet Steelers. You can throw them off by coveting their team’s guys. Try saying, “I think this is Maclin’s breakout year” or “Malcolm Floyd is going to explode this year”. Be careful… those statements may prove too. Better be safe and talk up Flacco.
DON’T BE A HOMER. Now this is critical. Your heart will tell you that a Redman/Mendenhall combination is lethal and that Miller under Haley will become Gonzales. This will cause you to overvalue and reach. Redman/Mendy combo might be good and Miller might be ok too… but good in fantasy does not win you championships.
DON’T BE A TURNCOAT. There is no reason to have anyone from the AFC North on your roster. You cannot put yourself in a position where you are rooting for your fantasy team against your team team. The Orthodox version of this rule also excludes Cowboys and Raiders if you are over 45 and Patriots if you are under 35 – all 3 if you are between 36 and 45. (I’m 42). Dispensation can be granted if you can show just cause and have the appropriate number of Steelers.
DON’T BE A HOMERCOAT. This is the guy who drafts the Steelers Kicker. Please do not do this. We cannot have you cheering for a failed red-zone attempt only to settle for a FG. Plenty of teams will fail in the red-zone and settle for FGs – Jets, Eagles, and Colts to name a few.
DON’T LISTEN TO YOUR TRIVIA. You will recall senseless facts about the Steelers like Rainey running a 4.24 or Redman’s legendary TDs in training camp goal-line drills… You have too much Steeler knowledge and it makes all other players seem slow and inept at the goal-line.
DON’T BE TOO COOL. You shall not refer to all Steelers by their nicknames while using the regular names for every other player. When discussing the Steelers DST do not mention Deebo or Big Snack. Big Ben and Young Money are off the table too. This gets old fast and makes more enemies of the Steelers.
DON’T BE TOO FORMAL. Conversely to the above rule, you shall not refer to all Steelers by their first, middle, and last names while referring all other players by their regular names. It is acceptable to do this once and only once… For instance, in the 10th round you may draft, “Former high school QB, AKA Big Money at UVA… now under new OC Haley expected to resemble Tony Gonzales… Earl Heath Miller, Jr. HEAAAAAAAAATH!”