Looking for a New Hobby?
Fantasy Football for Beginners part 1
Your son-in-law, or your old college roommate invited you into his fantasy football league this year and you declined because you have no clue how to play... this article is for you!
Playing fantasy football can seem like a mystery and you think you don't know enough about football to have fun. It is actually fun and easy. Winning championships maybe not so much... Check out the 30 minute sit com on FX called "The League". It's an entire series devoted to a group of fantasy footballers who are fanatical about the NFL.
So let's talk about the minimum requirements to play:
- A computer with Internet connection; who doesn't have this anymore?
- A TV to watch the games on, and some time on Sunday/Monday to watch at least your home town game. Go Lions!
- Interest enough to at least adjust your team roster 1X per week. More is better, but as long as you check for injuries right before the game you will be in good shape.
- Basic knowledge of the elite talent in the NFL. Unfortunately, you likely cannot draft all the players from your home team. You will need to know some of the other stars in the league. Fortunately, the experts weigh in and offer rankings prior to the season and weekly to assist you. Yahoo also has videos to help you decide which players have the best opportunity to benefit your team.
- A few hours to prepare for and participate in your leagues draft. This usually lasts about an hour. While auto draft is an option, I have never had any luck when allowing the computer to draft for me.
Ok, so you meet the requirements.... Why do I want to play?
Fantasy football is fun, and allows you to engage with other fans, and make new friends. It also makes the out of market games more fun to watch. You may have a player involved and it allows you to do some scouting to decide whether you should be starting a particular player from week to week. It also brings a new level of exhilaration to the game since you have a new rooting interest in certain players. I really enjoy the Monday night games, as many times players will have career nights on the big stage that will affect the outcome of your game in Fantasy.
So, how does it work?
First you draft a team, and keep in mind the design of the starting roster. You need to have a player to fill each position on your starting roster, which is chosen by the league manager. Usually you will have something like this:
QB- There are a lot of QB's that will consistently put up big numbers. I generally don't draft them right away. You will need 2 good ones to be safe with injuries.
2 RB- Need lots of good running backs, this is the most crucial position. Injuries, and inconsistent play will drive you crazy. You also have to be aware of teams that use multiple backs throughout the game, as they will have less "value" to your team.
2 WR- Can be the make or break position, since they can put up huge numbers or a big goose egg (0). Always difficult to predict but consistency will really help your team. Points are based on yards and TD receptions
TE- Usually not a huge place to make points but sometimes they can really come in with a big output and help you win your matchup for the week.
RB/WR - These are flex spots where you can use either a receiver or a running back. More reason to carry lots of running backs.
K- Kicker points are usually accumulated by giving more points for longer field goals. Extra points are worth one.
Defense- You pick one teams defense and hope for the score to stay low, and defensive touchdowns and turnovers.
BN- Benched Player who will not be involved in the game. May be injured or not playing this week due to a "bye week". I also like to hold on to players I think may be developing into stars, or backups to my normal starters in case of injury.
Each week you will have a match up against someone else in your league and you each enter your picks for the week from your roster, and the rest of the unused players go to your "Bench". The bench players points don't count, so you have to be careful with your choices. This is a head-to-head league, there are other types where it is all about the total points for the year.
That's all for now, next month we'll get into some strategies and talk about the waiver wire and bye weeks. If you have any questions: