Beyond my sports duties at the Atchison Globe are a few things here and there to help with the overall production of the paper. One of those things is typing in the TV grid that runs in each Saturday’s paper.

As I was typing in the next TV grid (find it on PAGE A2), I came across something that completely shocked me. There it was, 7 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 2: NFL Football. That’s right, football is back and I am ready.

I’ve been focused on baseball the past handful of Augusts. In 2013, we witnessed a Royals surge that served as a prelude to the following two years. In 2014, August kicked off one of the most magical runs I’ve ever experienced as a fan as the Royals came within one swing of winning the World Series. Johnny Cueto and Ben Zobrist had just recently joined the team in 2015 and the Royals went on to win the World Series.

In 2016, the Royals went 20-9 in August to pull themselves back into the postseason race before fading in September. Of course, in 2017, August meant hoping the trade with San Diego for pitching would work out and there would be one last run with the core group of the championship team. Oh my, how the pitching did not work out.

But now, with the Royals more than 30 games below .500 just days before August, I’m ready to throw my full attention toward the fall sports, including football. I’ll take a cursory glance at the Royals and their prospects from time-to-time, but my main focus now is on the fall.

That means I’ve started preparing for fantasy football. A few years ago I joined a league with an assortment of characters, and two years ago I formed a league with family members and close friends. It looks like I’ll join my third league this year. Really, it’s becoming an addiction.

A fantasy football draft is probably the lamest thing to think about if you’re not in a league, but it brings out my competitive juices like few other things these days. I like (love?) to talk a little smack during the draft and get a chuckle when another manager picks a player who is either buried on a depth chart or has been cut from a team, entirely. It happens every year.

Last year, the host of one of my drafts was out of the room when Chiefs running back Spencer Ware left a preseason game against the Seahawks with an injury. An hour or so later, that host drafted Ware, who went on to not play a snap all season.

Football being back also means Saturday tailgating is back, and we’re just four weeks away from our first opportunity in Atchison. Benedictine College hosts Bethany College (The Battle of BC) at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 25. Tailgating is just a big party focused around a football game – how can you beat that? The food is great, the company is great and there is always a good team to watch on the field.

Yes, we’re about to turn the corner on sports seasons. Adjust your inner settings appropriately.

Adam Gardner is the Globe sports editor. He can be reached at

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