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Friday, June 14, 2024

Consuming Podcasts: The Latest Frontier in Fantasy Football

Podcasts - NFL - Fantasy Football

Free time— it can be elusive.

Work. Home. School. Exercise. Family. Obligations. Funny enough, fantasy football has entered that upper echelon of priorities for many people as well. With that, as technology has enabled convenience in all phases of life, it continues to do the same for the fantasy world.

For content surrounding fantasy football advice, go-to experts have long been on the web, but more recently, the latest step in helping fantasy players gain more of an edge mirrors a growing platform in its own right: the podcast. Search every major publisher’s content portfolio or scan tweets of fantasy experts. Sure enough, it seems like everyone has audio offerings.

So, why the podcast? What’s on these podcasts? Why are they growing in popularity?

The Podcast Format Grows

Convenience is certainly a major driver for growth of the podcast. Being able to listen from your mobile device while commuting, working out, or even while closing your day fits valuable content into your busy schedule. 

A 2017 study conducted by Concordia University of St. Paul found that a focus on entertainment and education also drive the format. According to the study, nearly one in four Americans listen to podcasts — with millennials and Gen X’ers combining for 77 percent of all listeners.

SEE MORE: CBS Sports Turns to Voice to Help Fantasy Football Players

Advertisers recognize this, too, as ad revenue has more than doubled since 2015 alone. As you listen to fantasy football content, you’re likely to notice this as well, with many of the leading shows featuring various sponsorships. Sports — fueled by fantasy football in particular — finds itself in fourth place among all categories for podcast topic popularity.

For fantasy football experts like Sigmund Bloom of Footballguys.com’s “The Audible” podcast, the move into the format came over a decade ago as an early adopter with innocent goals.

“Cecil Lammey and I talked about the draft for about three hours during a 2006 phone call. Cecil asked, ‘Hey would you like to do this, but record it and put it on the internet?’ That sounded like a fun idea to me and I said yes,” he said. “People spend a lot of time, too much time even, thinking about their fantasy football teams.

“Some care more about fantasy football than elements of their day job. Podcasts transmit the level of investment the hosts and guests have in fantasy football, which normalizes and soothes the audience who share the obsession. They are also easy to consume while doing other things, like commuting or housework.”

The ability to multitask while consuming entertainment and education is a powerful draw, but as noted by recent growth in ad revenue, podcasts only recently took off in popularity to become a staple of the fantasy football experience as well.

Ross Tucker, a former NFL offensive lineman who hosts the “Ross Tucker Fantasy Feast Podcast with Rotoworld’s Evan Silva as a frequent guest, sees the same thing.

SEE MORE: CBS Sports HQ Places Its Bets on Sports Betting Show

“The growth of podcasts and fantasy football have seemingly happened concurrently over the last few years so it’s not surprising that the two have become joined at the hip in terms of people consuming podcasts for their fantasy football fix,” he said.

The content and the distribution have become a perfect match, and this has only fueled access to expertise for fantasy owners.

Inside the Fantasy Boom

For those new to fantasy football content on podcasts, there’s a world of coverage and variety. 

In season, offerings like the aforementioned “Ross Tucker Fantasy Feast Podcast” focus on in-depth reviews of NFL matchups as they relate to fantasy production — going player-by-player into their matchups and usability. Other shows cover weekly waiver-wire guidance among other topics — such as “Fantasy Footballers,” “The Daily Fantasy Edge,” and “Fantasy Football Almost Daily.” A discussion into weekly rankings is a staple for many too, including “Fantasy Focus” (ESPN) and the “Rotoworld Football Podcast.”

Footballguys.com’s “The Audible” covers these as well as the week of fantasy football news, but the show attempts to inform rather than direct decision-making for fantasy owners nervous about their waiver-wire pick-ups or shuffling their lineups before kickoff.

SEE MORE: New York Jets and Marvel Join Forces on Super(hero) Gameday Activation

“We love to share to the experience of watching and thinking about football and prefer conversation and provoking thoughts to telling people what to do or sharing some rare special knowledge that only we have. We’re about community,” said Sigmund Bloom.

Still this season, new entrants continue to emerge, as the “Pro Football Doc” podcast headlined by Dr. David Chao offers comprehensive injury analysis based on his work and diagnosis from reviewing video, combined with his understanding of recovery time.

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A busy schedule calls for optimizing your time as much as possible, and with a plethora of fantasy football podcasts out there, the information to put your fantasy team in position to succeed has never been easier to find — thanks to technology.

And ultimately, this has created a massive boom in one sector of the sports business industry.

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