By Amanda DK
I’ve never been a football fan. Not a real one at least. I mean, I grew up watching the Giants and Notre Dame with my family. I made it to the occasional football game at Northwestern to support my alma mater. Now I guess I’m an Eagles fan, because I generally like it when my boyfriend is in a good mood Sunday evenings. However, I’m also innately attracted to anything that brings people together. So you know how some people are “social smokers”? They will only have a cigarette when out with friends, or after a few drinks at a party. I’ll call myself a social football fan. I usually won’t elect to watch a game on my own, but I do enjoy it with a group. Especially if I can provide the appetizers and craft beer.
All of that said, I do love fantasy football. I don’t play it – as you might guess from reading the above, I would likely fail miserably, or scramble my brain trying to learn everything I possibly could all at once – but still I find it way more exciting to watch the points climb for my boyfriend’s fantasy team than any real one. A battle between him and his old roommate feels far more important than two collectives of people I have no personal connection with.
It also increases the social aspect of football. You can connect with coworkers, friends and even strangers on a new level; now there are double, triple or quadruple the teams to commiserate with them about (depending on how many leagues you are in). It’s another common thread to bond over, like a favorite band or obsession with Greek cuisine. Fantasy leagues also have the power to create and maintain friend groups that otherwise may not exist – it’s amazing the bond some aggressive trash-talking can forge.
Which brings me to The League. I am woman, I am not a football fan, and I believe this is one of the funniest shows on television. Possibly the funniest. Yes, it features a group of friends who are all in a fantasy football league, but it’s more about their friendship and hilarious fumbles (pun intended) trying to pass off as adults. It never gets old to observe lawyers, married couples, doctors or divorcees, act like complete assholes win a trophy that was named after a high school nerd, in fact, it’s compelling television. Whether laughing or cringing, good luck trying to keep a straight face while watching.