Originally published in August 2014

Love this funny, creative lead by the Sporting News’ Ladd Biro on selecting the ideal Fantasy Football team.

In a perfect fantasy world, my starting lineup this season would feature Peyton Manning, Adrian Peterson, C.J. Spiller, Calvin Johnson, Dez Bryant, A.J. Green and Jimmy Graham. That would be the same perfect world in which my kids all get full-ride college scholarships, Kate Hudson stalks me, and I lose weight every time I eat Tex-Mex.

Like Biro, I’ll be fortunate to get even one of these players in my 12- and 16-team leagues.

Like you, I’m reading as much as I can to prepare for my drafts. As I do, I appreciate when writers have a strong voice, reveal trends, offer specific details, and slip in self-deprecating or humorous comments – as Biro does in this lead. Conversely, I dislike writers who offer general commentary without detailed support and who are self-aggrandizing.

FYI – Avoid writing (real or fantasy) football predictions columns or features during the season – unless the column is entertaining. Nobody really cares whether you believe Eastern Illinois is going to beat Illinois State or whether you think Mike Williams is a sleeper fantasy football pick unless you can also amuse readers. Find a way to stand out. Read Matthew Berry, who mixes personal stories with solid insights, but don’t try to be him. You should also check out The Sablich Brothers, Mike Clay, the  prolific Mike Wesseling, Brandon Funston, and Mike Tagliere, among others.