By: Mathew Galvao
Have you ever dreamed of winning the Shiva? Or even dread the thought of being in the Sacko Bowl? Well this is the world of fantasy football when you’re in “The League.” If you’re a football fan then you probably have experienced being in a fantasy football league at one point or another. You and a bunch of friends get together draft a team, trash talk each week as your matchups get closer and battle for the league title and bragging rights over the others. “The League” takes you through that same experience with a little bit of everything in between.
Entering “The League” was one of the better decisions I’ve made television-wise. Some of my friends were all about it and I didn’t really know exactly what it was all about. I knew it was about fantasy football but didn’t really know anything else about it or why everyone was so into it, and then I joined “The League.” The show really makes you feel like you’re a part of what the characters are doing on the show. I feel as though the reason being is that it takes you through the lives of each of the characters both as it relates to the fantasy football league but also as it relates to their daily lives. The most interesting characters to me were Ruxin and Taco for two completely different reasons.
You have a character like Ruxin who is probably the most into the football league. He is always paranoid about the others in the league trying to come for him and ruin his chances at a championship. You saw it in season two where he felt that Jenny and Kevin (the husband and wife who are in the league) colluded against him when they made a deal that Jenny wouldn’t pick up Mike Bell after Kevin spoke to her about wanting to pick him up in the waiver wire.
You see a lot of that in the show from Ruxin who is constantly taking the league a little too seriously. And I’m sure many football fans have experienced that with their own fantasy football leagues, so we can all relate to having someone like Ruxin in our league.
Then you get to the other end of the spectrum with Taco. Taco is Kevin’s brother who is in the league but doesn’t really know much about football or care for that matter. He really is his own person in the show and does his own thing. He’s usually off trying to start something like his food truck in season five.
The thing about having a character like Taco in the show is that it helps do a good job of breaking up the football conversations with a little comedy. I think if the show didn’t take this route it wouldn’t be as successful of a show. A character like Taco who isn’t into football as the rest of the characters helps to reel in the casual fan and keep them watching the show. Even for a football fan like myself, I like that they use characters like Taco helps to keep me interested in the show so it’s not all football but a good mix, and that is what this show does well.
While in “The League” you get to meet some really great people. Some of them include National Football League players. This was a really cool experience to have while watching the show. One of the most relatable cameos was in season one. Ruxin is in a hot tub when Antonio Gates comes in and catches a lot of heat by Ruxin for not performing well for his fantasy team the week before. I think it’s something we’ve all wanted to do at one point or another when a player on our fantasy team underperforms during a big week, so for that it was great.
Michael Lauria sums it up perfectly in his article on cheatsheat.com, “In reality, most of us probably would not have the courage to actually berate a professional football player over a fantasy performance — well, minus behind a Twitter veil or anonymous chat room — but you never know. This encounter ended with Gates punching Ruxin, which was certainly one of the more memorable appearances on the show.”
One of the other really great things about being in “The League” is the fact that there is diversity, and by that I mean having a woman in the fantasy football league. I think it’s great that “The League” worked this in after the first season after it was male dominated. Having a woman in “The League” made it so that viewers could have that diversity and see that women can be just as much of a part of a fantasy football league as men, and having Jenny portrays that very well.
In her article on The Huffinton Post, Sammi Silber, makes the point that women are just as knowledgeable about sports as men are. “I’ll even say this. I can take you to any sports bar on any given day, order a dozen hot wings then and tell you all I know about hockey. It goes beyond memorizing the names of hockey players and the logos of teams. I can tell you that Connor McDavid has passed Shayne Gostisbehere for fifth place in rookie scoring with 40 points in just 38 games. I can tell you exactly what Corsi and Fenwick is, and then go on to explain what the numbers say about defenders. I can tell you that Anze Kopitar is by far the best two-way forward in the league in my opinion.”
I think this is one of the best things that “The League” has done. Getting a female in on the fantasy football league and sports in general. It’s a great look for the show. It has a woman involved in the league and Jenny’s success in the league goes a long way in doing that.
Joining “The League” has really been one of the best decisions I have made in television. There was so much to like. From being around people who enjoy fantasy sports as I do, to having fun following Taco around doing whatever thing came to his mind it’s been great. If I had anything else to say I would tell people to join “The League.”