Making room for an NFL Film Room

As I hope subscribers can see, we are once again pushing hard to improve our offerings and our overall service, and I have another announcement regarding that endeavor today.

The biggest issue we face during the regular season is that there are only seven days in a week. We produce so much content in terms of early-week review of the big picture, and then we quickly need to turn our attention to the upcoming week. Some/most people want us to do that while we’re still in review mode on Monday and Tuesday.

At times, it can become unmanageable.

We crank out so much in terms of written words, but one thing I believe is lost on people is that we also have to, you know, watch the games. We’re all obviously watching on Sundays as the action unfolds, but we’re obviously all over the place switching from game-to-game, so we also need to sit down and watch each game early in the week. That’s time consuming, and it’s a significant thing on our plates each week. We typically break the games up among the staff, but it’s not easy to get a clear and comprehensive overview of the week that was, and again it takes away from our writing.

But this year I believe we’ve solved that problem. I’ve already covered the new column we’ll be offering this year by the iconic Greg Cosell, and that’s going to be awesome and a way for subscribers to get an extra advantage playing the matchups each week.

But Greg does have a full-time job at NFL Films, so he can do only so much for us. We are fortunate in that our office is only 15 minutes away from Films here in South Jersey, and our geographical location is going to help us even more, as I’m happy to announce that we’ve hired Ben Fennell to be our full-time Film Analyst.

Ben was a researcher and XO producer for the NFL Network show ‘Playbook’ for six seasons based out of NFL Films in Mount Laurel, NJ. A self-proclaimed ‘film junkie,’ Ben has studied countless hours of NFL coaching tape with the likes of Mike Mayock, Matt Millen, Brian Billick, Sterling Sharpe, Brian Baldinger, and Joe Theismann. I was actually on the Playbook show for a full season way back in 2003, so I know how hardcore that show is in terms of breaking down the film and the matchups (me and Adam Caplan did fantasy segments for three different 1-hour shows each week).

Ben will be filling a critical role for us in 2014, one in which we think is a first in the fantasy industry. His sole responsibility working full-time will be to analyze the “All-22″ coach’s tape while mining for fantasy gold in terms of quickly spotting emerging players and compiling intriguing game notes while also serving as a matchup analyst for our weekly projections and game previews.

Here’s specifically how he’s going to help, if not be a huge addition to the site.

First up each week, he’s going to roll through the game shortcuts, which takes about 40-45 minutes for each game. Doing this he’s going to jot down a ton of notes that will help our early-week analysis looking for things like “just missed” big plays or scores, goal line work, player performances, etc. This stuff will help us with columns like the Stock Watch, Waiver Wire, Players to Trade & Trade for, our season projections, etc.

Then he’ll start taking a closer look at the “All-22,” and by doing that he’s going to give us a lot more insight on the matchups, so our Friday game previews will definitely be better and more insightful than ever. This addition in turn will greatly help us do what we do, which is produce written content. We don’t really want to produce more content (unless there’s clearly something we should add); we just want to produce better content, and Ben’s addition will be huge in 2014. He’s not even going to be doing this remotely; he will be nestled right along with us in the Worldwide Headquarters each week, so he’ll be right there with us in the trenches, which is important to note.

Feel free to give Ben a follow and a hello on Twitter @TheXOsOfLife



Category: Fantasy Football, News


6 Responses

  1. Eric says:

    As a long time subscriber, I’m excited!

  2. Gene says:

    John, you continue to innovate and amaze. I’m looking forward to Ben’s contributions to another great year.

  3. Jeff says:

    Great work! I look forward to another year of great content from the Guru team.

  4. Don Moser says:

    I’m excited as well. As the only one in my league that follows you I am always head and shoulders above the rest.

  5. Clevage says:

    This is the kind of innovation and effort that separates GuruNation from the pack. When comparing the expense of my annual memby vs. the profit generated from winning FF leagues & pick’ems, this kid is in the black! #GURUROI. keep up the good work men.

  6. Ron says:

    I am a first time use of this . site I love to listen to John Hensen on XM radio. i loved it when he was on comcastsportnet. would make sure I watched every week. loved his who is hot and who is not. also loved when he would give pick up and drop. looking forward to trying this site and hope it is every thing it says it is.
    all though I am not very savoy and am ting to learn my way around it. I don’t draft till the 26th of August and not sure what number draft pick i will be. once i do is there a place to put my drafted team fro you guys to look at.

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