Just as football fans love their fantasy leagues, so do NFL players. Many of them become just as invested emotionally as everyday players and they also like to ratchet up the competition. But for them, they do it with fellow players.
Recently, Reddit shared an anecdote between the SI’s Peter King and ESPN’s fantasy guru, Matthew Berry, who was promoting his new book, Fantasy Life. He had many entertaining fantasy football stories and one included the following between Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte and Jacksonville Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew.
It appears Forte likes to have some fun with Jones-Drew.
“…[Maurice Jones-Drew] is also an avid fantasy football player himself, hosting his own fantasy football radio show on SiriusXM. MJD is the first active NFL player to be both an athlete and a huge advocate for fantasy.
So the fact that he plays in a lot of fantasy leagues and, as an athlete, is a no-brainer first-round pick has led to situations where, because of where he’s picking, he doesn’t have the chance to draft himself. Normally, people in the league are understanding and let MJD draft himself. But not always.
One year, in order to promote fantasy, the NFL Players Association had a fantasy league with a bunch of NFL players, including MJD and Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte. And who did Forte select with his first-round pick that year? Maurice Jones-Drew.
It was a good pick, as MJD was going in the top three in fantasy drafts across the country and Maurice had a low draft pick in the first round. Naturally, he tried to trade for himself. And Matt Forte was having none of it.
As the season went on, MJD put up monster numbers, making his fantasy owners happy. And making it impossible to get himself back in a trade. “Come on,” Maurice texted Forte one week. “You gotta trade me to me.”
Forte texted back. “Hell no. I’m gonna beat you with you.”
Curious to find out when this anecdote took place, I had no luck. But I have to think it came between the years of 2009-2011 when Jones-Drew used to wrack up the yards.
His numbers included the following:
2009 -1,391 yards
2010 -1,324 yards
2011 -1,606 yards
As for 2012, well, there was the 414 yards while 2013 isn’t off to a rousing start as Jones-Drew has 115 yards to-date. On Wednesday, he sat out of practice and has been listed as probable for Sunday’s game. Let’s just say Forte probably doesn’t have him on his fantasy team this year but he does like to continue harassing the small player outside of their fantasy trash talk.
Check out this YouTube video from February 2012. It appears Forte likes to make prank calls to Jones-Drew.
This is pretty priceless.