football is growing more and more popular by the second. It
seems like everywhere you look you see another ad for a fantasy
football related product or service and everyone is talking
about this great game.
But what is fantasy football, and more
importantly, how do you play?
At the most basic
level, fantasy football is a statistic-based game. You select
real-world NFL players that will make up your fantasy team roster
and score points based on how they perform in real-world NFL
games. If your fantasy team scores more points than other fantasy
teams in your league, you win.
With just this basic
idea, there's an unlimited amount of variations on how to play
fantasy football, and many fanatics have spent countless hours
creating their own specific and detailed rules.
Then here are some general steps and advice to starting your
own fantasy football league.
a commissioner - The
first and most important step in starting your own fantasy football
league is to pick a league commissioner. The commissioner will
be the leader of your league. They'll be responsible for defining
and enforcing your league rules.
The commissioner is also in
charge of organizing league events, calculating team scores,
and keeping all teams informed and involved throughout the season.
As you can see, this
is a very important decision. A good commissioner can make for
a great fantasy football experience but a weak commissioner
will quickly sap all the fun out of your league. Make sure to
select someone who is willing to put in the required work, who
is diplomatic and fair with others, and who is detailed oriented.
Note: For more information
about selecting a commissioner and what's involved in the job
I recommend you read the article The Army had Patton ... You
Have a Fantasy League Commissioner by Joseph Legler at http://www.draftwizard.com
a group of people to play - Once
you've got a quality commissioner in place, your next step is
to get a group of people together who want to play. Most leagues
are made up of 12 teams, but with a little creativity in your
scheduling, you can play with just about any number of people.
may be a statistic-based game, but the real addiction behind
the game is the community that it's played around so try to
find other players that enjoy football at or around the same
level that you do. Statistic lovers will enjoy fantasy football
more if they are playing against other statistic lovers, casual
NFL fans will enjoy playing with other casual NFL fans more
than any other level of player.
If you're a hardcore NFL fan
that knows everything there is to know about football, you can
easily crush the casual NFL fan in a fantasy football league,
but chances are you won't have much fun doing it.
up your rules - So
you've got a commissioner and a group of players, now it's time
to set up your rules. It's important to set up strict and well-defined
rules for your league, but try not to sap all the fun out of
the game with restricting rules. Your rules should be used more
as guidelines than as laws. Be flexible enough to allow for
change when a rule is shown to be inaccurate or the majority
of your league demands such. Your rules are there to add structure
to the game play. Remember that in the end, the game is supposed
to be about fun.
Some general rules
that you'll want to cover include what your roster limitations
are, how trades will work, how free agency works, what your
scoring rules are, and how team disputes will be handled.
up your league schedule - Next
up, you'll need to put together a schedule for your league.
Because your fantasy teams are made up of real-world NFL players
and your points are based on their performance in real-world
games, your schedule should be set within the course of the
NFL regular season.
that the final game of your fantasy season be no later than
the second to last game of the NFL regular season. This is because
many real-world NFL teams rest their stars once they have qualified
for the playoffs. These stars are almost certainly the same
players that some of the teams in your league rely on. Additionally
if your schedule goes into the playoffs, there is a strong chance
that many of the real-world NFL players on various fantasy teams
won't have any active games left.
you should try to create a schedule which allows each team to
play every other team in the league at least once.
your teams - Now
that you've got your commissioner, set up your rules, and put
together your fantasy schedule you're ready to have your fantasy
draft. The point of your draft is to let all the teams in your
league fill out their rosters in as fair and simple a way as
Try to schedule the
draft for a time when everyone can attend and participate. In
general live drafts make for a more community filled and fun
league, but, especially at first, a live draft can be a slow
and drawn out process. The more organized and structured you
can make your draft, the more fun each team should have and
the quicker the whole process should go.
your games - Finally,
you're ready to play your games! Submit your starting lineup,
keep an eye out for possible trades or free agent pickups, gloat
about your success, and trash talk to your league mates when
of all, remember that fantasy football is a game and the basic
idea, whether you're winning or losing, should be to have fun.
Author... Kevin Marshall
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