Fantasy football: Moms on top

More and more women are getting in on the game


ORLANDO, Fla. – There's just a few weeks left of this year's fantasy football season, and that means-- the competition is really heating up.

[WEB EXTRA: Fantasy Football Leagues for Women]

You may think fantasy football is good for sparking trash talk with co-workers but it's not just for men anymore. It can actually be a family activity.

What is fantasy football?

Players in a league draft real, live NFL players. For example, on morning anchor Matt Austin's team, his quarterback is Cam Newton from the Carolina Panthers, running back Alfred Morris from the Washington Redskins, and Denver Broncos' wide receiver Demaryius Thomas.

The better they play in real life-- the more he wins. But if you think it's just a man's game, think again.

Women-- even moms-- all over the nation are getting in on the game.

According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, out of nearly 24 million Americans playing the game... about 20% are women.

"It's a great way for my husband and I to get together on another level, talk about something that's a little less stressful than the world events that are going on or what's going on with our daughter," said Daniela Cecil. Cecil is the mother of a 2-year-old and happens to be a fantasy football player extraordinaire.

In fact, her daughter Ellie is the whole reason Cecil got involved in a fantasy football league with other women to begin with.

"We met through a pregnancy app," she said. "We all had babies in either December or January of 2011 or 2012, and we've just kept in contact through that app. We've created a Facebook group, there's 134 of us that still talk. Eight of us that decided to join the league again this year."

Cecil said the league is as much about bonding with the girls as it is about getting baby advice or getting a leg up on this week's opponent.

"It will be like, 'Hey, is Olive throwing temper tantrums like Ellie? I just can't stand it, I can't see the football game behind her screaming and yelling'," Cecil said.

While some leagues have cash prizes, Cecil said bragging rights are the ultimate payoff.

"I'm the reigning champion, I want to win again," she said. "It's a lot of fun, it's bragging rights and I want those back."

But, ladies, if you don't know that much about football she said don't let that scare you off.

"I know a little bit about it, but I don't know enough about it to pick a full team once it's gone around and around, so we did an auto draft, so that it was fair for everybody whether you know a lot or don't," she said.

Local 6 followed Cecil throughout the season thus far, and though she has no hope of winning the championship she said the quality time spent with her family and friends playing the game is priceless.

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