This is it, folks. The moment you’ve all been waiting for. You put in tireless minutes at your computer (or typewriters for you older gentlemen), tap-tap-tapping away at the keys and hoping some fantasy-writing gold spilled onto your screen.
But before we get to the results, let’s talk shop. There were 13 entries into this week’s round, and all of you had your own spin on the three rookies who will nail it and the three rookies who will fail it. Some of you went basic, highlighting the oft-talked about Trent Richardson and RGIII. Some of you went a little deeper, talking Stephen Hill, Ronnie Hillman and Coby Fleener. One of you even talked about rookies on the defensive side of the ball, which, while a bit confusing, was clearly creative.
And that’s ultimately what we’re looking for in this contest. You’ve all read the ESPN, Yahoo and the million blogs that are out there. Everything you’ve written, thought about writing, or even dreamt about thinking about writing has already been written by somebody. So the key to separating yourself from the pack is finding an idea that’s new or different.
On top of creativity, what Sky and I looked for in the judging this week is grammar and humor. And it was sometimes a struggle to find both. A lot of you are talented writers, but struggled to interject enough humor into your writing. On the flip side (who says that?), there were some articles that made us both laugh, but had a lot of grammatical issues that needed to be cleaned up.
But the contest is young. So young, in fact, that it’s not even old to buy lottery tickets and cigarettes yet. But it’s old enough to pick some winners. So, without further ado:
2nd Runner-Up: Alex Kantecki
Alex took a different approach than most of the other entrants. While the overwhelming trend was to name a player then write about him, Alex intertwined the name into his writing, letting his article read less like a bulleted list and more like a story, which was a refreshing change of pace. Overall, the story was well written and infused with just enough humor to keep us reading (Drew Carey jokes are always appreciated). A solid start to the contest, Alex.
1st Runner-Up: Mike Picardi
The early-bird of the contest, Mike was the first person to submit his article. And what a good start it was. Mike’s intro—which offered a visualization of his brother writing his name in the snow in, ahem, yellow ink—was short but sweet, which is always key. You never want an introduction to run long enough to distract a reader from the fantasy information, and Mike’s did not. Like Alex, the story was solid grammatically, but Mike managed to sneak a few more jokes into the text, something we here at Razzball value very much. It wasn’t quite enough to squeak past our overall winner for the week, but being 1st runner-up after Round 1 is nothing to shake a stick at.
Winner: Kevin Kumpf
Congrats Kevin! Everyone who entered the contest this week obviously had some fantasy knowledge, but no one showed it off like Kevin did. He had college stats, pro stats, team stats, overarching trends—he had it all. As I said before, creativity is key in fantasy writing, and Kevin showed some of his with the way he compiled his stats. When talking about Stephen Hill, he compared his Georgia Tech statistics to Calvin Johnson’s. When he looked at Reuben Randle, he looked at the numbers Steve Smith, Mario Manningham and Victor Cruz posted in the slot for the Giants over the last three seasons. There could have been a few more laughs mixed in around the stats, but overall the work was solid.
There you have it, (zero) ladies and gentlemen. Your Round 1 results for The Next Great Fantasy Football Writer contest. Kevin has the early leg up on the competition, but Mike and Alex are close on his heels. As for the rest of you, there’s plenty of time to scrawl your name in to the winner’s circle the same way Mike’s brother did in the snow that day, so keep sending in submissions. The contest isn’t over till it’s over.
So without further ado, here’s your topic for Round 2: Three Sophomore Slumps and Three Sophomore Jumps. Sky loves the number three and things that rhyme, so this is your task for next week. Tell your significant other you’re busy, because you have some writing to do. Submissions are due Friday, July 6, and we’ll announce the winners the following week.
Oh and BTW, for those who didn’t compete last week but would like to contribute your two cents, here’s our contact info:
Sky ~ sky[at]razzball.com
Josh ~ joshv1991[at]snet.net
Please send it to both of us. We’d hate to try and rank you all and then find out we missed out on someone that the other thought highly of.