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In today’s mailbag, we’ve got someone whose fiancée (well, he writes “fiance,” but I’m led to believe it was a woman) broke up with him. And that sucks! Heartache is bad!

But in a bigger sense: breaking off an engagement is the BEST break-up. That’s not dodging a bullet, it’s ducking an artillery shell. Not only do you exit the relationship before pouring money into the Wedding Industrial Complex, but you also dodge the lawyers and paperwork (and, sometimes, traumatized children) that comes with a divorce. So take some deep breaths, ex-fiancé, and think about just how much worse it could have been.

Before I get to your letters, please excuse some promotional bullets for anyone who might be interested in some Ufford-brand videos.

  • The Keepers preseason episodes concluded with wide receiver rankings. Calvin Johnson sure is good!
  • The War Room returned with a draft special. That show will air every Wednesday during the season at 4 pm Eastern on SB Nation, and will be released as a podcast the following day. I hear podcasts are the future.
  • Uffsides is back! If you head over to SB Nation’s NFL preview, you can use the left sidebar to toggle over to videos previewing the AFC and NFC. Do that and you’ll see my obnoxious face saying mean things about your favorite team.

Okay, that’s that. Your letters:

Dearest Neanderthal,
Fantasy first- I’m in a 10 team league with buddies from home and we’re implementing keepers for the first time this year, so I’m pretty green on strategy. It’s a 1/2 ppr league, standard scoring otherwise. I get to keep up to two, and am torn between the the following guys: Purple Jesus (1st round tag), Jimmy Graham (2nd), and Matt Ryan (4th). I feel confident about keeping Graham, but unsure who I should look to keep otherwise.

Peterson. You can get Matt Ryan or an equivalent in the 5th round or later.

Now for a lady question, which includes the obligatory background. I’m a single guy in a major city and have a decent amount of things going for me (well-paying/rewarding job, not ugly, in good shape, friendly, generally likeable, etc.). About six months ago around the holidays, I was set up with a girl (let’s call her Stacey)

LET’S CALL HER STA-CEY!

through a mutual friend; Stacey was smart, funny, sarcastic, attractive, fit, laid back, and affable; pretty much everything I would look for in a woman. The date itself went very well, and agreed we both had fun and openly talked about hanging out again when both of us were back in the city after the holidays. She friended me on Facebook, and in the interim we texted each other a bit to see how holidays went, etc. Finally, I threw out a specific time/place for our second date, and didn’t get a reply. I followed up a day later and she replied she had gotten caught up, and couldn’t meet the day I suggested. I replied by asking if any of a few days coming up worked for her and got radio silence again, which sucked.

Through conversations with the mutual friend that set us up, I found out Stacey had recently gotten out of a relationship and was still dealing with some ex-boyfriend baggage. My friend was apologetic about setting me up with her, saying Stacey had told her she was ready to date again, but in hindsight she was probably not. My friend did say Stacey enjoyed the date and thought I was attractive, but that isn’t exactly a great consolation when there’s no date #2, so we agreed to put it on the back burner.

Now, being a single guy in said big city, I’m not new to being rebuffed, and I did the usual stuff to move forward (focused on marathon training and work, went on dates through tinder and real life socializing, avoided her Facebook profile, etc).

Very brave of you to soldier on after not getting a second date with someone.

This worked for a bit, but six plus months later I haven’t really clicked with other any other girls I’ve dated since, and I find my thoughts keep coming back to this girl. Am I naïve to think I should reach out to this girl again, either on my own accord or through our mutual friend? Obviously hesitant to do so because of how things went last time, and I may be hanging on only the positives here. Is it worth a shot, or should I just keep soldiering on and doing what I’m doing? I’m usually not one to dwell on girls who have rejected me previously but for some reason I feel differently about this one. I would appreciate your thoughts/advice, good sir.

Thanks,
Mark

First of all, that is a LOT of words for someone you went on ONE date with. The thing you need to be aware of is that there’s a fine line between being “sweetly tenacious” and “grossly obsessed,” and that line is largely determined by the target of your affections, not me. Maybe she just needed some space after her relationship and would now be more open to seeing you again. Or maybe that was a line you were fed to soften the blow of her not being interested.

I’m all for living without regret, so you may as well ask your mutual friend what ol’ Stacey’s up to. But if you get anything besides an enthusiastic “You should ask her out again!,” I’d say it’s time to move on.

**********

Oh great guru,
Fantasy: So I am entering year two of a keeper league and we each get to keep one. The league is 8 teams, 2 QBs, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, 1 Flex, 1 D/ST, 1 K, and an IDP (zesty, huh?) and I’m torn between keeping Andrew Luck and Alfred Morris. Now I know Luck is the safer bet, but with all the other elite RBs being kept, and not an outstanding amount of depth at the position, is Morris now worth the keeper slot?

Holy shit, you have an eight-team league and your best options at keeper are Luck and Morris? Here’s hoping you’re less terrible at fantasy football in Year 2 of your league.

Keep Luck. Why? He’s a top-5 QB, your league starts two quarterbacks, and there are only ten to 12 (maybe 14) decent fantasy quarterbacks every year. If you can manage to grab Manning/Brees/Rodgers with one of your first two picks, you’ll win the league. Assuming you don’t muck up the rest of your draft as much as you did last year, I mean.

Romance: As a single guy I’m looking to meet girls in a social, open place that isn’t the constant noise of a bar/club. What are your suggestions? (I do live in a big city so that helps)
– Beaumont

Hmmm … a social, open place … not noisy … in a city. That certainly narrows it down a bit; I’ve crossed off everything on my list besides “church functions” and “public parks.” This is also the commenters’ typical cue to sing the praises of beer-league kickball.

**********

Long Time Reader, First Time Writer,

Fantasy first because that is where my focus is this weekend. Keep one: Alfred Morris for a 15th or Jordy Nelson for a 5th? Standard-scoring non-PPR 10 team league. I’m leaning toward Nelson for points volume, but Morris for a last round pick is very enticing.

Nelson’s a great fantasy WR, but you can get him in the 3rd round of any ten-team draft, and WR is a much deeper position than RB. With Morris, you get a starter at a thin position with your final pick. And with half your RB spots filled as the draft begins, you can more easily spend an early pick (or two!) on a wideout who’s even better than Nelson.

Sex (or lack thereof, buh dumm tss!): My fiance recently broke up with me.

Life sucks, other fish etc. etc. My question is what is the official ratio rule of how many days/weeks of post-breakup unhappiness per months/years of relationship am I allowed to feel crappy? Obviously I want to be happy and it takes time, but, ya know, when will be the point that I should quit boarding the SS Pity Party and just get over it?

Sorry for the lack of anal sex questions or Kate Upton sideboob pic,
Nacho

“Getting over it” isn’t a switch that just gets flicked. I’m not gonna quote all of Ron Livingston’s speech to Jon Favreau in Swingers now, but you just kind of go through the motions of life, pretending to be okay … until one day you’re actually just kind of okay. And you realize that you’re holding on to the hurt from the break-up because if you let the hurt go, then that means she really is gone.

Well, bad news: she’s gone whether you decide to be hurt or not. And while there are various timelines for healing — I, for one, endorse moping and drinking too much for a month before cleaning up your act and throwing yourself into work and improving yourself — it really comes down to how committed you are to cutting her out of your life and distracting yourself. And even, the hurt will probably linger in one way or another until you find someone else. But that’s the good news! You’ll find someone else.

MOPEY PERSON: No, I won’t. Not someone like her.

That’s good! You don’t want someone who will break off an engagement.

**********

Captain Caligula,

Fantasy: For the second time in my illustrious fantasy career I put together a dominant team that steamrolled the entire league through the regular season only to get blasted in the ass unceremoniously by the lowest seeded team in the first round of the playoffs. It hurts. The difficult part now is that I have a stacked roster and can only choose three keepers. There are no draft penalties and I won’t know anyone else’s keepers until draft night, which is next week. It’s a 12 team league with some scoring tweaks: .5 point per reception and .25 point per carry. So there’s an emphasis on dudes with the rock in hand frequently. There are also bonuses for yardage, something to the effect of an extra 10 points after 300+ yards passing and 10 points for 100+ yards rushing or receiving. Scoring is high.

Blech.

I’ve basically narrowed my keepers down to some combination of Matt Forte, Jimmy Graham, Matt Stafford, Zac Stacy, and Jordy Nelson, with an emphasis on the first three. Forte and Graham are locks. If I follow ADP, then Jordy would be next in line, who I don’t think gets enough credit as a rock solid WR1, likely due to his lack of pigment. Stacey is also intriguing, especially because he’s young and could be a potential multiyear keeper for me, not to mention the PPC bonuses and the fact that Fisher would love to run the ball 60 times a game with or without Bradford. But I keep coming back to Stafford who, even in a down year basically puts up better fantasy numbers than any other QB not named Rodgers/Brees/Manning. He’ll be in a lot of shootouts, is in a division without any great defenses, and it looks like he’ll finally have more weapons outside of CJ1.9K, so I’m high on him. For what it’s worth, I don’t think there are any better options other than what’s already listed but a few other notable guys on the roster are Boldin, Ben Tate, MJD, Kendall Wright, Cecil Shorts, and Julius Thomas (yes, i had Graham and Orange J, having Graham allowed me to gamble and draft a high upside backup but I was unable to trade him for fair value).

Ehhhhhh … I don’t think I can give a full buy-in for Stafford without some kind of trade-off value pick for him (Stafford for a 6th-rounder would be amazing). All things being equal — which they are in this case — take the three best players: Forte, Graham, and Nelson.

(I can already see someone saying that Stafford is the 4th QB by ADP and Nelson is the 7th WR, therefore Stafford is the better choice. That may or may not be the case, given the relative lack of depth at QB or the fact that you can start 3 WRs in most lineups. Personally, I drafted Stafford the year after he threw 41 TDs to 16 INTs, and promptly got treated to a 20/17 season. I’ll wait for consecutive seasons where he manages a 2-to-1 TD/INT ratio before I endorse I give him my full endorsement.)

Sex: For better or worse, I don’t really have a compelling sexy-time question at the moment. My lady and I just bought a house together after two years of cohabitating. So we’re doing ok. Anyway, we’ve been invited to three weddings in four weeks in October,

That’s a lot of fall weddings. Your friends are disrespecting football season.

so consequently I’ve got two bachelor parties coming up in September (the third one I attended over the summer, in case you were curious). I haven’t been tasked with organizing the full itinerary but I’m sure more than a few of us will contribute in some way or another, and my own bachelor party is probably coming sooner rather than later. Anything notable about yours or others you’ve been to that stands out in your memory? I seem to remember something about gambling on a boat and then excessive drinking, all of which is really never a bad idea.
Thanks,
Make up a signature for me.

It seems you remember my bachelor party as well as I do. Yes, we rented a boat to cruise around Manhattan. There was some poker. There was a group picture on the back deck with the Statue of Liberty. Then … whiskey. I remember falling down a ladderwell without spilling my drink, but I don’t remember falling on my face in the middle of the West Side Highway. Nor do I remember singing Pearl Jam in the limo we flagged down, which later broke down. We walked to an East Village dive, which is where hazy pieces of the night come back into picture for me, and where the night fell apart for others. The next day we tried to patch the night together with receipts, bruises, and one bracelet from the ER. So it was an appropriately debauched bachelor’s party, though I’d like to remember more of it.

As for your bachelor’s party or others you might plan: tailor it to the bachelor’s desires. I went to bachelor’s parties at age 23 where I thought a night at the strip club was pretty sweet. A few years later, I decided I preferred bachelor parties that focused on hanging out with the guys. So get a cabin in the woods and drink a keg while reminiscing. Or go to a firing range and a steak dinner. Hell, do peyote and have a Settlers of Catan tournament if that’s what the groom wants to do. A bachelor’s party is a celebration of male bonding, so it’s only appropriate that you end up doing some stupid shit.