It wasn’t long ago that I was a martyr in the front-page story of my hometown newspaper.
I was 20, and I had a story to tell. Only it was the kind that you internalize rather than tell others. So, I carried on as most college students would – burning down weekends on rooftops, just trying to find my way.
Thankfully, I uncovered a place I could share my lessons from this cinematic journey. The first edition of “Start, Sit & Seth” was published on Sept. 7, 2018, mere months from the closing of what I hope is the most lamentable chapter of my life.
Fast Forward Four Years
Four years later and 76 editions later, I’m still writing this column – loving every sentence of it.
Only life got crazy (in a good way this time).
This column is now housed on a site that’s truly an extension of myself and, of course, my In-Between Media family. While we may not have the largest audience quite yet, we arguably have the best. An audience that appreciates us being us, an authentic group like blood trying to live life to its’ fullest.
Fantasy football analysts and entrepreneurs I look up to have now become colleagues, and I have mentors who have genuinely changed my life. I’m not the same person I was when I wrote my first column, and that’s alright.
Change is inevitable, so much that it took a boy whose senior superlatives were the biggest flirt and life of the party to a man who is equally as much of a homebody with his extraordinary girlfriend, Katie, and cat, Billie.
Since leaving what I envisioned as a dream job working in higher education communications, life has only gotten crazier.
I work with clients finding success within the sports world, helping them grow their audience and their goals.
In addition, Katie and I traveled to the Las Vegas strip during the NFL Draft.
I’ve been a fan of the #NFLDraft since I was eight years old.
This past week I got to live out my dream, photographing and videotaping the @_cmnetwork’s draft parties in Las Vegas.
Here are my biggest takeaways on this life-changing experience (a thread): pic.twitter.com/aXiGOwoJtU
— Seth Woolcock (@Between_SethFF) May 2, 2022
We filmed a live fantasy draft party in the press boxes overlooking Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in the birthplace of professional football.
If there is any way to describe @theffexpo ‘22, that’s it.
Here are my top takeaways from this life-changing experience… a ???? pic.twitter.com/ItD1WvNI6B
— Seth Woolcock (@Between_SethFF) August 16, 2022
And just last weekend, we produced a NASCAR gambling live stream in a classic car barn in the Amish town of Intercourse, Pa.
— Seth Woolcock (@Between_SethFF) August 27, 2022
And everywhere we go, we have an absolute blast doing it, usually up too late carrying on with spirits and our new friends.
It was a fantastic first day here at @theffexpo.
Here’s to another good day, Canton. pic.twitter.com/ICj5jsEB7s
— Seth Woolcock (@Between_SethFF) August 13, 2022
I don’t write this to boast, as I’m incredibly grateful for each opportunity. I write it to document it because sometimes I still can’t believe this is the life I’m living now – one filled with happiness, passion and, of course, love.
The Pressure Point
When it comes to how this life came to be, it’s important to remember a few things:
It didn’t come without sacrifice. I traded time with the people I love for time spent improving my craft. I gave up the stability of a weekly paycheck to chase happiness and financial upside.
This is also only the beginning. We have a long way to go here at In-Between Media, and the same can be said for me personally too. I’m still working to become a better significant other, family member and friend.
As a new football season is within site, I cannot help but feel thankful for this crazy life I’m living and the adversity I had to overcome to get here.
If there’s a theme of advice I want my readers to hear this fantasy football season, it’s chase happiness. Whether in your personal life or professional, don’t settle. Shape the life you want to live. But be willing to sacrifice and change along the way to get there.
Carrying that optimism as you finish up your fantasy football drafts and make your final preseason roster moves is also crucial for a successful season. Roster moves and transactions are happening as we speak, ever-so-slightly shifting the balance of the fantasy football landscape.
Like chasing your dream, chase the upside – especially with your end-of-roster players. Don’t settle for a player who might be a WR5 or a low-end TE2. Shoot high as you consider some of my favorite sleepers, possibly as some of your own.
Alright, and here we go.
The following start/sit selections are based not only on stats, trends and film research, but also on the current Average Draft Position (ADP) each player has in a Points Per Reception (PPR) Redraft League.
Quarterback Sleepers I’d Start this Season With:
Trevor Lawrence came into Jacksonville as a rookie in a doozy of a situation. But in year No. 2, Urban Meyer is replaced by Super Bowl-winning head coach Doug Pederson. He’s the same man who helped Carson Wentz (an inferior talent, in my opinion) finish as the QB5, playing in 13 games as an NFL sophomore.
His offensive line was improved when the Jaguars added five-time Pro Bowl guard Brandon Scherff. Plus, his weapons got upgraded with the signings of Christian Kirk and Zay Jones and the return of his college teammate Travis Etienne.
Lawrence projects as a mid-to-high QB2 for me with upside for more. He opens up with a great matchup against the Washington Commanders. Lawrence is currently available in 44.4 percent of ESPN leagues.
Running Back Sleepers I’d Start this Season With:
Darrell Henderson (Los Angeles Rams): I’ve had an on-again, off-again relationship with Darrell Henderson. I listed him as a favorite sleeper heading into 2020. Yet, I advised selling him when his value peaked and faded him in a handful of last season’s columns.
But it’s always come down to value with Henderson. And he’s currently a value with an ADP of PPR RB47 on ESPN. I’ll take that all day for the RB “1B” for Sean McVay and the Rams. Los Angeles once again has Super Bowl aspirations, so there may be times they are conservative with Matthew Stafford’s elbow and Cam Akers just over 13 months removed from a torn Achilles.
That could lead to more-than-expected work for Henderson, who has been effective, posting a career 4.5 Yards Per Carry (YPC) and 7.6 Yards Per Reception (YPR).
Wide Receiver Sleeper I’d Start this Season With:
George Pickens (Pittsburgh): Much of my fantasy analysis stems from analytics. But when it comes to why I’m highlighting Steelers rookie WR George Pickens here, it comes down to “manalytics.”
Every teammate interview I’ve heard talking about Pickens says he is a dog. He has confirmed those claims each time he’s been on the field this preseason. Pickens posted eight receptions for 84 yards and one TD this preseason. He also provided highlight reels of a game-winning catch and planting defenders when blocking.
With Chase Claypool battling injuries throughout camp, Pickens may have the No. 2 receiver job already won. With Diontae Johnson and Najee also now slightly banged up, offensive coordinator Matt Canada will need to gameplan Pickens in as early as Week 1.
He’s still the PPR WR55 on ESPN, and he’s only rostered in 52 percent of already-drafted leagues. He could be a steal anywhere in the double-digit rounds.
Tight End Sleeper I’d Start this Season With:
Cameron Brate (Tampa Bay): If we know one thing about the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with Tom Brady at the helm, it’s that they’re going to throw the ball a lot. Brady has averaged 664.5 attempts per season there. One beneficiary from that volume should be tight end Cameron Brate.
Brate is an athletic and reliable tight end who had two TE1 seasons with Jameis Winston at QB in 2016 and 2017. Rob Gronkowski’s retirement vacates 88 targets and a healthy dose of redzone looks. Chris Godwin may also not be ready to go by Week 1. That leaves Julio Jones to compete with Brate for Tom Brady’s No. 2 target not out of the backfield beginning the season.
Jones has not had a clean bill of health the last few years, and Brate still scored four touchdowns last year as the team’s TE2. Brate is free in drafts, roasted in only 1.5 percent of ESPN leagues. Get him while you can.
If you have a feel-good story that you would like to share for an opportunity to be featured in an upcoming edition of “Start, Sit & Seth,” please reach out.
And for more fantasy football and uplifting content, you can find me on Twitter @Between_SethFF.