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While the NFL playoffs have yet to begin, The Bush League playoffs and championship game wrapped up this weekend. I was fortunate enough for my team, Los Osos, to emerge as the champion. I was able to come out on top thanks to the emergence of Carson Palmer as a fantasy football beast at the QB position along with Chad Johnson and some choice pickups and trades through the course of the season.

A trade of Deuce McAllister for Willis McGahee with McAllister being hurt for the season a week after the trade, LaMont Jordan for Steve Smith (who turned out to be the best WR in fantasy football), and a late season trade for Clinton Portis were big trades for me. I was also able to pick up Ricky Williams who helped fill the hole at running back left by McGahee who smelt of rotten garbage in the closing weeks of the NFL season. Ricky was able to be one of the premier backs in weeks 15 and 16 because of a Ronnie Brown injury. The success of a Fantasy Football season is really part luck (Carson Palmer in Round 8) and pickups to fill in for the stupid draft choices you make (Alge Crumpler Round 5, Mike Vick Round 6) and trades which we already talked about but really luck is the biggest component.

If you didn't know Fantasy football is huge. Its THE thing to do for anyone even remotely interested in football. I first started playing fantasy football 4 years ago (I have been playing fantasy basketball since '97 which is ancient in fantasy sports terms). My first foray into fantasy sports was using a book, but with the help of the internet, fantasy sports has exploded in popularity. According to a Harris Interactive poll, fantasy sports in general, has grown into an industry that generates an estimated $100 million in annual revenue and involves about 30 million Americans. Seriously, if you don't have a fantasy sports team in this day and age and you enjoy sports, you are still probably using a rotary dialing telephone.

Having a fantasy team adds a new type of excitement to watching football games and certainly increases your knowledge of individual players and statistics. One of the downsides is you start rooting for individual players instead of teams as well as forgetting that there is alot more that goes into football then rushing yards or passing touchdowns. The game is also pretty addicting as you find yourself scouring the free agent pool of your league late at night or early in the morning looking for a potential break out player or replacement for a player that has just gone down to injury. Overall I love my fantasy sports and I play all the major ones (baseball, basketball, football) and couldn't imagine sports life without them.

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