Preseason Free Thinking with site co-creator Franklin “Nick” Leffler!

Welcome to Free Thinking! Every week I’ll be bringing you an interview I have with many special (and not so special) guests. You can expect these interviews to arrive every Thursday right here on!

Earlier last week I had a conversation with the co-creator of this glorious league website, Nick Leffler. We sat down and chatted about this brand new website as well as the current state of the Wasted Talent fantasy football league. Please enjoy!

Editor’s Note: This interview took place September 4th, 2018, well before Nick’s defeat at the hands of none other than your’s truly.

How are you doing this evening Nick?

Pretty good, I’m eating some veggie cream cheese on a plain bagel right now. Trying to carb-o-load, you know?

How was Crossfit today?

I didn’t go. I got my haircut. Aesthetics, Don.

How was the haircut?

Pretty good. A little shorter than I thought it would be, but that’s what happens when your normal barber can’t book you a friggin’ time in the next two days.

Was it expensive?

Cheaper than I’m used to.

That’s a win.


Let me ask you a bit about your brand new website. What inspired this idea to have a league website?

I would say the fact that ESPN’s site is dog doo-doo combined with nobody wanting to visit anything Josh has control over. And Greg really wanted to blog. And so did I. So we put our collective heads together and we thought “It’s only $4.99/month to have a website” and we jumped right in.

It is pretty cheap. If we all contribute, it won’t be too bad. We could keep it going for years on end. But we do have some Jews, so we’ll see what they do. What kind of content can we expect from you and your cohorts?

We have an owner’s bio page that Don Eaves is managing and it looks flawless. Everything is factual. There’s no fake news at all on our website. We have a couple of good columns. I’m writing the Matchup of the Week and also doing my Power Rankings. Greg is doing Star of the Week. We have David’s Deal Discussion where all of our trades will be monitored by Keegan. Pretty much goes without saying it’s going to be horrible. And rounding it out is Blockhead of the Week where Ryan may, or may not, shit on people. But getting him to write more than 3 sentences is going to be tough so we’ll see.

Do you have any set schedule with these postings?

Getting everyone in our league on a schedule? Tough. I think Star of the Week is on Wednesdays, but don’t quote me. I’m going to try to do Matchup of the Week at the beginning of the week and Power Rankings will be mid-week. I can’t say for everyone else because just getting a text back from half of our league is difficult.

Literally impossible. And for anybody else wondering, the interviews will be coming out once a week, some time in the middle. Probably Wednesdays (lol nope). I think Wednesday will be a good day for interviews don’t you think?

Yeah Hump Day Interviews. I like it.

Yes indeed. Let’s jump to some league questions, I do want to get to some fantasy football eventually. First thing’s first, on a scale of 1-10, what is your confidence level going into the 6th year of the league? (Editor’s Note: He doesn’t give a number. Automatic rookie score)

Well as you know, my team consistently runs between 4 and 8 players that are out for the majority of the season. I expect to sneak into the back end of the playoffs and then Jarvis Landry will probably put up a 12 catch, 140 yard game, and I will end the likes of Josh, or Ryan, or GT, depending who’s up against me. But if I make it to the 2nd round of the playoffs again, I expect to have another bad draft pick, that I’ll be able to pick someone up and overrun some IR.

Do you feel you’ve drawn a bad hand with all the injuries you’ve suffered throughout the tenure of the league?

Listen, the fantasy gods have something against me. I don’t know what I did. I don’t know who hurt [the fantasy gods] fam, but I’m just trying to rectify the situation and move on.

I really think there’s only one way that this is going to be fixed and it’s probably not something pretty. How far do you see this team going before you think you’ll have to make a major change?

Well if you look at my team, next year I will have 3 starting RBs and some established receivers. Henry will come back off of IR and take the role Antonio Gates has occupied forever. Things are trending upwards, but I expect Keegan to trade a top 3 player to Jason for a pack of Skittles so we’ll see what happens.

We can always count on Keegan for that. Who do you believe is the league sleeper this year and why?

I just did Matchup of the Week and it was between Don Eaves and Ryan. As you saw on that column, Ryan’s team will have a surpise victory in Week 1. Supreme talent at WR, Cam Newton, and Kareem Hunt – who people aren’t giving his just due. I do think Ryan’s going to be top 3 or 4 this year.

That is a bold prediction. Top 3 or 4 would be quite a jump for him from last year. Let me ask you about something a little controversial. What is the current commissioner situation?

That’s another thing I hope the league site can shed light on. I want to see what GT and Jason have in store. Maybe we can put it to an official vote and kind of oust our supreme leader. He’s getting married, he’s starting a new job – where he’s going to be working 70 hours/week. Also, he’s kind of mean sometimes.

I completely agree with that. Let me ask another controversial one. Were you a proponent of the re-draft?

Up until the day we voted, I was all for the re-draft because I saw Jason’s team as power that while earned, was also given. I wanted to offset that power, but GT really convinced me with his never-say-die attitude.

Last question: what do you think needs to happen in order for you to finally become the Naomi Cup Champion?

I think I’ll be set up really well next year and for 4-5 years in a row. I just think I need a standout WR. I don’t see any reason that I don’t have a team that’s going to be top 3 or 4 next year and for years to come. I don’t think much needs to happen besides finding myself a top 5 fantasy WR. Once I find that, Jason’s ass is grass.

Nick I want to thank you for your time and thank you for the interview. Any social media plugs?

It’s @nickleffler. Like all of my IG pictures if you haven’t already. I pretty much post about my girlfriend because she gets mad at me if I don’t. Sometimes I post pics of the boys, but that’s only if I look good.

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