Players have fantasy
owners in mind

Updated: August 19, 2003, 10:32 AM ET
By By Steve Young | Special to ESPN Insider
Fantasy football has really blossomed in the last 10 years. When I was playing in the NFL, I was more than aware of fantasy football, as most players are. I have never participated in a fantasy league, but I knew that when I played well it boosted my value in fantasy leagues all over the country.

Football players have a ton of people they need to please -- coaches, teammates, the media, their families, fans and, yes, fantasy football owners. Even when I scored touchdowns with the 49ers, it would cross my mind. I would think, "Hey, the fantasy guys are going to love that."

Players get a lot of mail, much of it from people who have picked them in their fantasy leagues. I would get mail from people saying, "You are my fantasy quarterback. I need you this year. So make sure you run it in from 1-yard line or throw for a touchdown." The letters would detail how their leagues were run and how many yards and touchdowns I needed to get.