Real Doctor Makes Diagnoses for Fantasy Football

Five years ago, Stephania Bell was an orthopedicist who played fantasy football as a hobby. She had an edge in that her professional medical knowledge let her make better estimates of how well players would recover from their injuries. Dr. Bell has since been able to leverage her medical forecasting abilities into a new career:

Now she does regular stand-ups on ESPN’s Fantasy Football Now and blogs for the network about the finer points of Reggie Bush’s fractured fibula. Sports fans ignore her diagnoses at their peril — reconfiguring your imaginary lineup based on her instincts can really pay off. Take last season, when Atlanta Falcons running back Michael Turner suffered a high ankle sprain but was back on the field in two weeks. “There was no way he was fully recovered,” she says and told viewers as much. “Running backs take a lot of stress through the ankles, and Turner’s a stout, powerful guy. I knew he was going to be in trouble, and he was.” Sure enough, Turner underperformed in his first game back, got hurt again, and was taken out. He should have spent less time listening to his trainer and more time watching cable TV.

Videos at the link.

Link via Marginal Revolution | Photo: Guido Vitti/Wired

UPDATE 12/23/10: Various commenters point out that Stephania Bell is not a physician, but a physical therapist. Cursory Googling confirms this correction.

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