June 30th, 2010

Could Del Rio Kill MJD Fantasy Show?

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Regardless of how you feel about athletes being positioned as fantasy experts, Maurice Jones-Drew is inarguable the biggest name in the just-introduced fantasy lineup for the new SIRIUS XM channel.

The Jaguars running back has played fantasy football for at least a couple of years, getting edged out by Cato June for the 2008 title in the league put on by NFL PLAYERS and then stating that his infamous kneel down against the Jets in 2009 cost his own fantasy team a victory. Jones-Drew has been among the leading athletes in “getting” fantasy, but might his coach stand in the way of this new show?

As ProFootballTalk.com’s Gregg Rosenthal (another guy who knows a thing or two about fantasy football) pointed out Wednesday morning, Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio effectively barred quarterback David Garrard from doing his own Friday evening radio talk show in 2009. That’s the same timing as the scheduled MJD show, which will begin in August.

At that time, Del Rio reportedly said he was against Garrard’s show because of its timing, just two days before the typical NFL gameday.

Garrard reportedly relayed this explanation from his coach: “You can field things early in the week and … rehash the past game. But late in the week, you want to be studying your film, you want to be with your family and you want to be off your feet, relaxing.”

Does that apply more strongly to the quarterback, who presumably has more to study and retain going into each game, or does it go for any position? Can Del Rio create a double standard by blessing Jones-Drew’s show a year after crushing Garrard’s?

Rosenthal raised the possibility of MJD’s show being taped earlier in the week, but the SIRIUS XM press release sure seems to indicate the show will be live every Friday night. Specifically, it encourages potential listeners to call in to talk to one of fantasy’s top performers.

“Wondering who has the league’s best run defense? Call Maurice for advice that comes straight from the gridiron,” the release says. While certainly not impossible, it would be difficult to set up a system for taping a show each Monday or Tuesday with active callers.

Perhaps the player got his coach’s OK before jumping in, but it’s equally possible that today’s release will provide the first news Del Rio has heard on the subject.

We’ll see if the Jones-Drew fantasy show stands. Let’s hope it does, as it would be interesting to hear fantasy talk from a player who ranks among the top fantasy producers in the league (and this year’s top pick for some folks).


SIRIUS XM Finally Rolls Out Fantasy Sports Channel

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

The lineup began with the addition of RotoWire back in March, but it wasn’t until today that SIRIUS XM officially announced its complete new fantasy sports channel.

“We’ve created a unique destination for fantasy sports fans,” president and chief content officer Scott Greenstein said in the press release. “Our listeners get live play-by-play … that allows them to follow all their fantasy players or teams in real time. Now they have a dedicated fantasy sports channel that they can tune into 24 hours a day.”

The channel — 147 on XM, 211 on SIRIUS — features a list of prominent fantasy companies and veteran writers. Perhaps more interesting, though, is that the lineup will include some current and former athletes and a former general manager.

Starting in August, Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew is scheduled to host a Friday night fantasy football show (7 to 9 p.m.). Jones-Drew has clearly been a leader among athletes in “getting” fantasy, going so far as to say his infamous kneel down against the Jets last year cost his own fantasy team a victory. (Related: What will his coach have to say, though?)

Before that, former Mets general manager and ESPN analyst Steve Phillips will begin co-hosting a fantasy baseball show (with Jeff Rickard) weeknights from 8 to 11. In addition, basketball season will bring a weekly show for that sport, featuring former NBA guard Dennis Scott as an analyst and fantasy industry veteran Scott Engel as host. Hockey season will bring Jeremy Roenick as a host for a fantasy hockey show. Engel will also host a weekly fantasy golf show with Golf.com founder Alex Miceli.

“To complement the in-depth and informative fantasy talk from the industry’s experts, listeners will hear from all kinds of personalities, from actors and musicians in addition to current and former athletes, all with real fantasy sports knowledge,” Greenstein said in the release. “We will present a daily listening experience that is informative, and always engaging and entertaining.”

In addition to the daily (weekdays) RotoWire show — and previously reported slots for Fanball and Fantasy Pros 911 — the SIRIUS XM fantasy lineup will include a football show featuring FantasyGuru.com’s John Hansen and Scout.com’s Adam Caplan, a RotoExperts show during morning drive time and a Friday night entry from The Fantasy Consultant (Nathan Zegura).

Check out the full announced lineup here.