One ref’s decision cost a Missouri man $1 million in fantasy football competition

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Every football game needs a winner and a loser.

One avid NFL fan is making headlines around the world after a referee’s decision cost him $1 million and the ultimate thrill of victory.

A lot of money was nearly in Rob Huntze’s hands. The 41-year-old makes a habit of playing daily fantasy sports, and Monday night was no different for the St. Louis-area insurance dealer.

As the game between the Los Angeles Rams and Chicago Bears progressed, Huntze’s entry at DraftKings continued to climb the charts on the website’s daily fantasy football competition.

In fact, when the game ended, Huntze’s entry was No. 1 overall out of roughly 176,000 entries, meaning he’d won $1 million — or so he thought.

“It was just intense,” Huntze shrugged Thursday.

“Robocles,” as he’s known in Fantasy Football circles and on Twitter, said he kept refreshing his computer screen to be sure. He said he’d already called his mother to celebrate and imagine their gains from the money.

It wasn’t until at least 20 minutes after the final whistle that game officials changed one quarterback sack call to a tackle for loss. The late change caused Huntze to lose just enough points, and the top slot in the contest and, sadly, the $1 million.

“I let out a guttural scream when I refreshed the screen,” Huntze said. “Complete shock. Disbelief.”

Huntze still won $3,000, which isn’t bad after investing more than $600 in entries for the contest. Hunter said he’s an experienced gambler, and he knew this could happen.

“In my mind, I didn’t mentally deposit that money where I’m missing out on paying this off or going on this trip. That hasn’t been too bad so far,” Huntze said.

Five other players tied for first place and split the $1 million prize.

Huntze said he’s disappointed, but not dismayed. He’ll be back in the game for future fantasy football bets, and sooner or later, his luck is going to change. 

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