Fantasy Doctor: Quitting ruins the fun for everyone

Pay attention.

Six weeks have passed since we kicked off the fantasy fun, and a dominant team or two has probably emerged in your league. Most of us are holding the middle ground, fighting every week to not be eliminated from the playoff contention. Most likely, though, we all have that one team sitting at 0-6 or 1-5 — and that’s where the problem starts.

Say you’re that 0-6 team. Every week, you find yourself staring at your roster like puzzle you’ve been trying solve since high school. Something has to be done when your kicker is one of your top scorers. But what can you do aside from starting shoddy waiver pickups and pleading to your friends for trades?

Let’s face it: If this is you, you’re probably starting to lose hope.

You can’t give up, though. Your league still needs you. Although a win may seem less likely than the world forgetting about Justin Bieber, you have an obligation to see it through. Yes, you signed up to win, and it’s probably not going to happen at the rate you’re going. But if you bow out and let your team become a guaranteed win, you ruin the fun for everyone.

By giving up, you affect the entire league. No one can blame you for losing, so long as you put forth the effort. Just quitting, though, makes you a poor sport. If you quit when things get bad, your friends will start to notice. Maybe next year they decide to leave you out. You are unreliable after all. Now, because you didn’t make the most out of the hand you were dealt, you don’t even get to sit at the table.

Take a look at the Jacksonville Jaguars. To say they are bad is almost an insult to the word itself. Maurice Jones-Drew is a wilted mess, Blaine Gabbert is below average and they have almost allowed 200 points scored against them in six weeks. Last Sunday afternoon in Denver, though, they seemed determined to give the Broncos a run for their money. Although the 35-19 score didn’t exactly spell out achievement, the Jaguars fought hard, against all odds and displayed solid football.

So before you think about giving up, before you consider your team worthless without Julio Jones, think about how your actions affect your league. Don’t just accept your team as a bust; embrace the constant title of underdog. Keep trying, keep fighting, and you may find a way to stick it to your friends yet — even if it isn’t until next year.

Here’s my selection of pickups and drops for Week 7. Signed, your always-faithful fantasy doctor.

PICKUPS

Justin Blackmon (wide receiver, Jaguars, 53 percent owned in ESPN leagues) — The only concern with Blackmon is his groin and hamstring injury. He’s being held out of practice today, but the Jags just look to be taking a precaution. If all seems well heading into the weekend, look to Blackmon for some big numbers. He’s turned out back-to-back 19-point weeks, with 19 catches for 326 yards and a touchdown. The Chargers may have been able to hold the Colts to mere nine points Monday night, but a lot of blame can be assigned to dropped catches. The Chargers still post one of the worst pass defenses in the league, which makes a healthy Blackmon a great option.

Jarrett Boykin (wide receiver, Packers, 0.1 percent owned) — Randall Cobb is out for six to eight weeks, James Jones is questionable with a knee injury, and Aaron Rodgers is suddenly left with holes to fill in his receiver corps. When injuries strike, young players get their chance to shine, and that’s exactly what could happen for Boykin. The second-year receiver had his share of spotlight jitters, catching only one of six targets — but that one was taken for 43 yards. He has potential, and you can bet the Packers will be working closely with Boykin in practice this week. If you are looking for some breakout receivers, snag Boykin from the waivers. He could surprise you.

DROPS

Texans (defense/special teams, 94.3 percent owned) — The Texans allowed 38 points to the Rams last week. They may have had a pick-six, but does it really mean much against Matt Schaub, who has thrown at least one pick in every game this year? Houston has a weak run defense, and against a backfield threat like Jamaal Charles, Week 7 could be very bad news for the Texans (as if they need any more). Even J.J. Watt and Brian Cushing aren’t enough to keep the ship from sinking against the undefeated Chiefs. Toss them to the waivers and find something more stable.

Daryl Richardson (running back, Rams, 81.6 percent owned) — Guys, c’mon. Have you looked at his numbers? Even 12 catches for 104 yards doesn’t redeem 58 carries for 167 yards. I could talk about how Carolina is the No. 3 rush defense in the league, but if you’ve had the displeasure of owning Richardson in your league, I have a feeling you already know it doesn’t matter. He can’t produce. At all. So despite the 81.6 percent of you who seem to think hanging on to him is a good idea, you’re wrong. Ditch him faster than the Patriots ditched Aaron Hernandez, and do it now.

J.J. is a sophomore in Media. He can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @Wilsonable07.