The trade deadline in the OIL was October 31. It's been an active season, with multiple trades completed before the first ball was even snapped, and it stayed that way all the way to the trade deadline.
First, SoonerJack (sitting at 3-5 and in bye week hell), sent Chicago Bears TE Martellus Bennett (who is on a bye this week) to Arrogant Americans for Indianapolis Colts RB Trent Richardson and Philadelphia Eagles TE Zach Ertz, neither of whom are on a bye this week. The trade made sense for both teams. SoonerJack is still in the playoff hunt and cannot afford a sixth loss. Kudos to Bruesch for doing all he can to fight for that playoff spot. For Cliburn's Arrogant Americans the trade upgrades his TE position while giving up only a couple backup players.
Then, two likely playoff teams completed a trade designed to bolster their playoff rosters. Pyle's Lucky Enuf sent Oakland WR James Jones (who has been a serviceable WR3/Flex play in PPR formats) to Trovillo's Dirty Hippies for St. Louis WR Tavon Austin, Baltimore RB Bernard Pierce and San Francisco RB Carlos Hyde. For Pyle, the trade gives him the valuable handcuff to Frank Gore in Carlos Hyde, as well as a boom-or-bust WR in Tavon Austin. The Hippies, meanwhile, gave up a few backup players for a WR who can fill a valuable Flex spot while Giovani Bernard is injured.
The OIL is about tradition. It has never been a money league. We play for pride, a traveling trophy, and the opportunity to keep in touch with brothers we served with. And we maintain tradition by chronicling the year we spent in Iraq together and each successive OIL season in our ongoing oral history project. But we're always looking for ways to improve the league experience for all. I've often wondered what we can do for our champions that will last beyond their reign as Harrington Trophy keeper and suggested an additional prize. After a league vote, the following measure has been passed.
Beginning immediately, the OIL will award the league champion with a custom jersey designed for their fantasy football team. The jersey number will be the year of the championship. This year's champion will wear a number 14 jersey. Through an agreement with HopcoSports.com, we are getting our jerseys at a fantastic price.
But that's not just for the league going forward. Once all the managers pay their share, I will place our first order, which will include a jersey for every previous league champion. The 2010 and 2012 champion Arrogant Americans already have their jerseys. The first order will include: a number 6 jersey for Pyle's 2006 champion Lucky Enuf squad; a number 7 jersey for Morgan's 2007 champion Whackers; number 8 and 11 jerseys for Bruesch's 2008 and 2011 champion SoonerJack franchise; and a number 13 jersey for Cobb's 2013 champion Dogs of War. Those four managers should begin considering design options immediately, although Pyle already has a jersey template, as does Bruesch. Other managers with jersey-templates but no championship include: Roger's Ammo Dogs; Jessen's DominationStation (two-time OIL Bowl runner-up); Trovillo's Dirty Hippies; Duffy's Hangovers (who already have a jersey, but not a championship jersey); and Baldwin's Reapers.
So far, three managers have tendered their dues to the commissioner. Get those dues in so we can make this happen. You may mail the funds to the commissioner's home address or send it through PayPal.
The OIL champion can still look forward to receiving the Harrington Trophy with his name and franchise name engraved on it. This is just one more reason why our league is so amazing. Not only did we invest in a quality traveling trophy, we all pitch in to ensure our champions have something permanent to signify their achievement.
Thank you to Uni-Watch for linking to this announcement.
Our Ask the Arbitrator feature provides quick, unbiased trade review when controversy divides your league. Today's trade dispute comes from Joshua Johnson's .5 PPR keeper league (max of three players kept):
This trade should be upheld. Normally, the standard of review is simple: could a reasonable fantasy football manager make a case for this trade helping their team this season? But this is a keeper league. In a keeper or dynasty league, the standard of review is even lower because the rationale and ramifications extend beyond this season. So, let's take a look at what is really happening here.
Team 1 gives up two young SEC RBs in Zac Stacy and Isaiah Crowell (initially played for Georgia before transferring to FCS) to Team 2 for up-and-coming TE Travis Kelce and young QB Nick Foles.
Zac Stacy is the starting RB in St. Louis and has looked good in his first two seasons. Crowell is a rookie in a crowded backfield, but many believe he is the most talented back in Cleveland.
Travis Kelce is quickly becoming a TE1 in PPR scoring while Nick Foles is a top-10 QB in either format. As starters go, Foles and Kelce are probably better players than Stacy and Crowell right now. But it's entirely possible that Kelce is a backup RB for Team 2 while Foles could be his team's QB1 or QB2.
Team 1 is most likely starting Stacy and stashing Crowell. So, in effect, this is a situation where Team 1 cashes in on his RB depth (one starter and one stash) for an upgrade at QB and TE.
For Team 2, they sacrifice depth for a RB who is a stud right now and a RB who is predicted to be a stud soon. And this is a keeper league.
Whether Team 2 truly has enough depth to pay this price is in the eye of the beholder. Whether Foles and Kelce are worth losing a stud RB in Stacy and a potential stud in Crowell is up to Team 1 to decide.
This trade would be borderline if it were a redraft league, in which case it would essentially be Stacy and a lottery ticket at RB for Foles and Kelce. But this is a keeper league, so the lower standard of review saves the trade.
Ruling: The trade should be upheld.
Do you have a trade dividing your league? Send it to us and we'll arbitrate the dispute.
Our Ask the Arbitrator feature provides quick, unbiased trade review when controversy divides your league. Today's trade dispute comes from Michael Fitzpatrick's 14-team PPR keeper league:
Two trades for review:
Thanks for the submission, Michael. We'll address each trade in order.
Trade 1: This trade should be upheld, but only because it is a keeper league. Normally, the standard of review is simple: could a reasonable fantasy football manager make a case for this trade helping their team this season? Under that standard, this trade would fail.
But this is a keeper league. In a keeper or dynasty league, the standard of review is lower because the rationale and ramifications extend beyond this season. So, let's take a look at what is really happening here.
Team A is 3-1 with Golden Tate and Malcom Floyd. At 3-1, it's unlikely that Floyd is starting for their team, but Floyd has been serviceable. Tate is currently ranked 20th in PPR scoring for wide receivers with 24 catches for 317 yards. Tate and Floyd are keeper-eligible for a 12th and 13th round pick, respectively.
Team B is 1-3 even with Jordy Nelson, who had an ADP this season of second to third round. Nelson is the bigger name (as evidenced by his ADP), and is currently a top-three PPR WR. But Nelson is not keeper-eligible and Team B is 1-3 even with Nelson's Herculean efforts thus far.
Team A gets the bigger name here with the most potential for this season. Team B gets an opportunity to cash in on a big name to help build his team for next year. It may be too early to push the panic button for Team B, but that's up to him (or her) to decide.
Tate is actually scoring at a WR2 level even with Detroit's recent offensive struggles. Whether that is sustainable is up for argument. Floyd is doing decently well in a resurgent San Diego offense. There's a good possibility he wasn't good enough to contribute to Team A but is good enough to contribute to the 1-3 Team B. Kudos to Team A for not resting on its laurels.
Ruling: The trade should be upheld.
Trade 2: This trade should also be upheld due to the keeper nature of this league. Here, we have two 2-2 teams going in different directions. It appears one team thinks it has a shot this season while the other is already building for next year.
Team C would trade away Montee Ball (currently outside the top-30 in PPR scoring for RBs) and Dez Bryant (a top-10 WR in PPR scoring). Neither player is keeper-eligible. Team D trades away 25th-ranked WR Alshon Jeffery, who has been injured this season but can be kept next season.
From an outsider's perspective, it looks like Team D believes it can win this season. To that end, it is trading away a player who could help its team next season for a buy-low, one-season RB and a top-10 WR that may put him over the top this season . . . but will not be able to help his team next season. Team C appears to be looking forward to next year already, but it's not exactly holding a fire sale. It gives up on the disappointing Montee Ball and trades top-10 WR Dez Bryant for potential top-10 WR Alshon Jeffery (if he's healthy) with the understanding that he can go into next season already set at one WR position.
Again, this trade would be overruled in a re-draft league, but this is a keeper league and that raises more possibilities for trade rationale.
Ruling: The trade should be upheld.
Do you have a trade dividing your league? Send it to us and we'll arbitrate the dispute.
That being said, I don't care if the Chiefs were an original member of the AFL or that their uniforms have remained the same since the beginning. The Chiefs are flat-out boring. Even when they had Priest Holmes, Dante Hall, and Larry Johnson they were boring. They're boring with Jamaal Charles in the backfield. Their color scheme makes them look like they're coached by Ronald McDonald (when they're actually coached by the Kool-Aid Man).
Their QB is "efficient" . . . which means he doesn't suck, but he's boring. That's pretty much the Chiefs' M.O. The same could be said for Cassel before him. Or Trent Green save for a couple seasons. Or Rich Gannon before he became a league MVP in Oakland. Or Joe Montana when he played for the Chiefs long past his prime. Or Steve DeBerg. The list goes on.
Their top wide receiver is a top wide receiver only in that he is the best guy at his position on his team. The only thing consistent about him is the ability to drop passes and disappoint both Chiefs fans and fantasy football managers dumb enough to draft him. Yet he's the best they've got because the Chiefs front office looked at their horrible passing game after last season and decided not to improve it.
Because they're consistently mediocre, they rarely have a very high draft pick. But they recently were so bad (but still boring) they were awarded the number one pick in the draft . . . and they spent it on a lineman from Central Michigan who went on to a horrible season at right tackle. Now, that's boring Chiefs football.
The most exciting era in recent Chiefs history was coached by Marty Schottenheimer. Think about that. While I think Schotty was a good coach, "Marty Ball" was flat out boring . . . and that's as good as it's going to get for Chiefs fans.
Even their name is boring because they can't even misappropriate Native American culture correctly. While everyone has a firm stance on whether the Washington Redskins is offensive, no one even seems to care about the Chiefs and their own headdress-wearing fans. The Chiefs use just enough imagery to let you know what kind of chiefs they're referring to but not enough to make the team or its identity at all exciting.
I grew up in and live in Oklahoma (which, for the geographically-challenged, borders Kansas and Missouri), and I've only seen two people in my lifetime wear Chiefs merchandise. One was a homeless guy who wore the same Chiefs Starter jacket for years (because it was probably free), and the other grew up to be a Juggalo. That's even more amazing when you consider Hall of Fame Chiefs lineman Will Shields is from my hometown. One of the best players of his era was from a town one state away and yet no one there rooted for his team. That's some elite-level indifference right there. And that's everyone's opinion of the Chiefs: indifferent. No one hates the Chiefs because they never do anything to threaten your own team on the field (like division "rival" Denver) and never do anything worth arguing over off the field (like, say, the Raiders).
I've known more Chargers, Jaguars, Bengals and Browns fans in my life than Chiefs fans . . . and they're thisclose to us. Yet, due to the NFL rules on regional broadcasts, I'm routinely left with only one option: watching the Chiefs on a Sunday either lose terrifically or win boringly. Then, when anyone suggests Oklahoma City as a possible NFL-expansion location, people say we've already got the Cowboys, Chiefs and Rams, not realizing that no one here likes the Chiefs and the only Rams "fans" here are just Sam Bradford fans hoping he makes OU look good. But no one likes the Chiefs. No one. And yet, outside of the Cowboys, I've seen more Chiefs games than any other halfway interesting franchise. Thanks a lot, Kansas City.
OKLAHOMA CITY — The OIL's Arrogant Americans released RB Ray Rice today after gossip site TMZ released footage of the player punching his then-fiancée in a casino hotel elevator. Rice was suspended in February for two games for the altercation, and Arrogant Americans manager Justin C. Cliburn took a chance by drafting Rice in the sixth round of the 2014 OIL draft.
"At the time of the draft, all I knew was Rice was missing two games," Cliburn said. "At a sixth-round price tag, our organization felt he was worth the risk. Today, it blew up in our faces. We regret the pick."
But before cutting Rice, Cliburn attempted to trade the embattled RB to OIL manager Mike Schmidt. The Arrogant Americans and Schmidt's Dead Again franchise agreed to trade Rice and Roy Helu for Bishop Sankey and Kenny Stills.
"I saw the video of Rice punching his fiancée," Cliburn said. "And I knew two things: 1. Rice would be suspended for longer than his original two-game sentence; and 2. I no longer wanted him on my roster."
But shortly after the trade sending Rice to Dead Again, the NFL's Baltimore Ravens terminated his contract and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended the Super Bowl-winning RB indefinitely. League reaction to the trade, coupled with the indefinite suspension, was swift and fierce.
DominationStation manager Zachary Jessen said, if the trade was not vetoed, the league's recent move to third-party trade review would have been a mistake. Fourth Down Syndrome manager Justin Finch was even more outspoken:
"Typical [C]lyburn [sic] bullshit. I've come to expect some trade-raping on a weekly basis [from him]. I don't know why anyone ever thinks they are getting a good deal from him," Finch said. "[Yo]u should be ashamed," he added.
Cliburn was undeterred by the criticism. "As soon as we realized Rice would be cut, we contacted Schmidt and let him know we'd be ensuring the league commissioners vetoed the trade," Cliburn said. "I would lose all credibility in the OIL if I went through with this trade."
The Arrogant Americans and Dead Again trade was vetoed by the league office at 2:34 p.m. CST. It is unclear if another NFL or OIL team will take a chance on Rice at some point in the 2014 season, but Rice would have to apply for reinstatement to the NFL in order to play again in the NFL or the OIL. In Rice's place, the Americans will start the recently-acquired Zac Stacy at RB2. Andrew Hawkins will assume the W/R flex position as the Americans move to a five-WR offense.
By Arrogant Americans manager Justin C. Cliburn
The Baltimore Ravens released RB Ray Rice today, after video emerged of him knocking out his then-fiancée during a drunken argument. Here is the video:
In addition to the Ravens releasing the Super Bowl champion Rice, the NFL indefinitely suspended him from the league (citing new evidence). The NFL originally suspended Rice for two games.
I drafted Rice this year. With a two-game suspension, his value was lower and I felt it was a good risk/reward draft choice in the sixth round. I felt bad for it, but using him on my pretend football team did not mean I condoned his actions. Fantasy football is not "real." I wasn't paying him a salary. Ray Rice wasn't publicly representing the Arrogant Americans. We won the 2010 OIL Bowl championship with Michael Vick at QB, so we took a chance. Today, that chance blew up in our faces. When the video first emerged, I tried trading Rice. But I didn't know he would be cut. I assumed his suspension would be extended (perhaps to six games). I traded him to an original OIL manager and breathed a sigh of relief. But then the Ravens released Rice, and I knew what the right thing to do was. I vetoed the trade and instead outright released Rice from the Arrogant Americans roster.
I get a lot of grief about my trades. I "win" my trades more often than not. And I did here again, but gaining valuable players for a RB unlikely to play in the NFL this season was wrong. So the trade has been canceled. I hope I've retained your trust as the OIL commissioner.
The 2014 draft party was a success. About a dozen managers were in attendance at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill in Bricktown, Oklahoma City. Philadelphia Eagles RB Lesean McCoy went first overall, and Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant was the final pick of the first round. You can see the full draft results here and here (although the OIL2 is considering a redraft due to failures on Yahoo's part). Thanks go out to everyone who showed up and MyFantasyCommish.com, who organized the draft party. Here is a slideshow of the photos taken at the draft party.
The first of many images depicting OIL franchise jerseys on real players came in today. This one depicts Peyton Manning playing for the 2012 OIL Bowl champion Arrogant Americans. The images were created by a user at Fiverr.com. The uniforms are based on the New England Patriots throwback unis.