Overview

 

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So, you think you know pro football? Then it's time to see how well you can really do! First, you have to decide how you will run your league. One of the best aspects of fantasy football is that you can make your rules any way you want them. There are thousands of fantasy leagues around the country, and hundreds of variations on the scoring methods alone.

Elsewhere at this web site, you will find the rules used by the Eastern Kentucky Fantasy Football League. Feel free to modify them as you wish. Another great resource is The Fantasy Football Abstract, written by Rick Korch, past Managing Editor of Pro Football Weekly.

You will want anywhere from four to sixteen people to form a fantasy football league (we've found that eight or twelve are the best sizes), with each player getting his own franchise and acting as owner/general manager/coach. Each "owner" will draft his players, play games, and vie for the championship.

First, you must decide on a commissioner and a deputy commissioner (who will decide any disputes involving the commissioner's team).

Your league may want to set a franchise fee, just as the NFL does when it expands. All of the money goes into the pot, which will include money that can be charged for player transactions. At the end of the season, the money is awarded to the top teams.

You will decide on the length of your league's season, and then make a schedule so the teams can play head-to-head during the season.

Team owners will gather before the start of the NFL season for the annual fantasy draft. There, they will select players in the following positions: quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, tight ends, and kickers from actual NFL rosters. In other variations, you may want to choose a defensive team, a coach, individual defensive players, etc. Remember, the more complicated your scoring system, the more time-consuming it will be each week. Every team will have the same roster size, which is generally double whatever your starting lineup is. Each team will submit a weekly lineup to the commissioner before a set deadline.

Teams are allowed to pick up, drop, and trade players after the draft, although your league will have to set rules beforehand so that nobody gets an unfair advantage.

Teams will meet in head-to-head competition and score points according to a predetermined scoring method. Results and standings will be posted (or distributed via mail, fax, or e-mail to all teams) by the commissioner a day or two after the close of each weeks' NFL games. The season ends with playoffs and the championship game.

So there you have it -- the basics of fantasy football. For more in-depth information, check out the rules page, or look in your favorite bookstore or library for a book.

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