09/07/2012 03:53 pm ET Updated Nov 07, 2012

Why Your Wife/Girlfriend Needs to Play Fantasy Football

With each new season, fantasy football just grows and grows.

This year, research firm Challenger Gray estimates 22.3 million Americans will spend one hour per week with their fantasy teams.

That means 22.3 million wives and girlfriends will roll their eyes at the fall ritual and utter something like this:

"Ugh, fine. Go have fun at your dumb fantasy thing."

They can complain all they want, but the 'sport' is firmly entrenched in American culture.

And that leaves women with only one option:

They need to play too.

Why Girls Should Play Fantasy Football

Oh, let me count the ways.

- Having your own team will ensure you're always up on the conversation, especially in the office. Whenever guys start rambling on (ahem, complaining) about their fantasy teams, you'll actually understand what we're saying and gain major cred. Whether guys want you to chime in with analysis... well, that's another matter.

- You'll finally learn the rules. Playing fantasy will teach you how football works. RB? LB? INT? Nope, those aren't texting abbreviations. Never were.

- You'll stay busy all fall. Any guy will tell you: fantasy football regulates our weekly schedule. Adding/dropping players, injury updates and team reports Monday through Friday all culminate in a glorious finish on Sunday. Even if you only pay attention on Sundays, it's still worth it.

Why Guys Benefit from Girls Playing Fantasy Football

One reason, plain and simple:

- If our wives and girlfriends are engrossed in their fantasy teams, there's no way they can get mad at us for watching football every Sunday.

It's like we're creating thousands of 'Jennys' from The League (except we'll just teach the fantasy rules and not how to trash talk better than us).

So with girls in the mix, do they join long-standing male leagues or form all-female ones? What about co-ed situations?

This season in my family-only league, we have four girls joining a previously all-male roster.

Four girls, eight guys.

I know. Embarrassing -- and even humiliating -- situations lie at every turn.

Especially since we have team names like 'Pretty in Pink' (my fiance's) and 'u r losing to a girl' (my sister).

For the guys in our league, it's a risk we're willing to take.

Falling to a girl in fantasy football? Certainly no picnic.

Being forced off the couch every Sunday to do chores because our girlfriends just don't 'get it'?

Hopefully, a thing of the past.

Let the great fantasy debate begin. Is it time for guys to welcome girls into the fantasy fraternity? Do a lot of girls already play? Do some girls think fantasy football should remain a club for boys only?

Sound off below!