If you’re like me, around this time each week, you start looking up whatever tidbits you can find to help you this week in your fantasy matchups. And if you’re like me, it takes you about ten minutes to get frustrated when you can’t find the exact information you’re looking for. You spend the rest of the week/end lamenting over how you should have drafted player A instead of player B and how much better your life would be if, in fact, you had <insert name of running back not on your roster> instead of <name of running back on your roster>.
Dan Chaparian was having the same problem before he decided to take matters into his own hands.
A Shrewsbury native and Boston University grad, Dan founded Football Verdict during a time in which he was unsure there would even be an NFL season, in order to provide fantasy players with a more personal experience when it came to how they’d set their roster.
Football Verdict, after all, isn’t just a source for fantasy football information, it’s where conversations about fantasy begin.
In a blog post at the site, he writes
Last year, Crowdflower asked users to rank football players based on expected fantasy results. Before Week 1, they asked users to choose which of two football players would deliver the most fantasy points.
After the season, they concluded that “crowdsourced workers never performed worse than a professional team of experts at predicting the value of Fantasy Football players. Approximately 80 percent of the time, crowdsourced workers were better. Most interesting, the biggest difference between crowdsourced workers and experts was for the most valuable players.”
“Countless people are asking who they should start each week, but they aren’t getting the answers they want from traditional fantasy sites,” said Chaparian, who founded Football Verdict to be the Quora of Fantasy Football; users submit a question and any member of the community can reply, ensuring not just the best crowd-sourced answer, but a personal touch to go along with it.
That might seem like it wouldn’t be enough. Which is why there’s a rewards system built in.
“We rank users after each week based on the success of their answers,” Dan told me, being sure to point out that there have been talks to incentivize the best commenters, but those plans aren’t concrete yet.
It took just two weeks to get their leaderboard up and running, and the numbers on the board indicate just how engaged the community has been over the early weeks of the season. Chaparian notes that Football Verdict is averaging 13 answers per question.
Chaparian admitted that he’s a pretty active user on Quora, and that helped in his decision to build a platform where fantasy junkies can not just get their questions answered, but build a community around their players, teams and seasons.
While the platform is still evolving, for an infant service, it’s a great source of information that can help your fantasy team to no end. Now if only the manager of my fantasy team would start heeding the advice that flows abundant from the site…