Since it’s inception in 1963, fantasy football’s popularity has skyrocketed in America. With an estimated 33 million participants, the virtual football game based on numbers and projections is not just a man’s game anymore. More than 6 million women nationwide have joined the madness that is screaming at the television, obsessing over lineups and fantasy scoreboards that takes place in bars and living rooms on Sundays across the nation.
Although the game’s popularity is at an all-time high, most women still don’t understand exactly why it is that their boyfriends and husbands are rooting for random players on teams other than their own.
If you want to surprise your man, trust me, there’s nothing hotter than a girl who plays fantasy football. So grab your notebooks, it’s time for a crash course in fantasy football.
What exactly is fantasy football?
Fantasy football participants are “owners” or “managers” of their teams that compete amongst friends, co-workers or even strangers by accumulating “fantasy points” based on the statistics of real football players. The majority of leagues total points on a weekly basis and matchup head-to-head with opponents. The goal is for your team to score the most points each week and make it to your league’s playoffs (typically taking place from weeks 14-17 of the NFL season.)
Building your team
It all starts with the draft, a meeting of all the competitors in your league (usually between eight and 12 teams) where teams are constructed from scratch, either in-person or online. The most common is the “snake” format where each team is assigned a number in which order they will choose their players. Starting from one all the way to the bottom and from the bottom back to the top.
It is a good idea to prepare for the draft by becoming familiar with the top players at each position prior to putting your team together. You will want to focus on finding players that get into the end zone (not by picking the hottest guys). There is a vast amount of information about the subject, but your best bet would be to pickup a fantasy football magazine at the grocery store. (This is also the perfect opportunity to ask you crush, boyfriend or anyone else who’s got your attention for some help!)
In a standard league, your roster will be compiled of one quarterback, two running backs, one flex player (spot can be filled with either a running back or wide receiver), two wide receivers, one tight end, a kicker, and a team defense/special teams.
Example of a fantasy football roster:
QB: Peyton Manning DEN
RB: Frank Gore SF
WR: Calvin Johnson DET
WR: Julio Jones ATL
RB/WR: Reggie Bush DET
TE: Jimmy Graham NO
K: Sebastian Janikowski OAK
DEF: Seattle Seahawks
You will also have several spots on the bench, needed for injuries, bye weeks or simply if one of your players hasn’t been putting up many points lately. You may use your bench spots any way you’d like.
Managing your team
Throughout the season, there will be many factors to consider while deciding who to start and who will be on your bench on any given week. The main thing you will want to look at before setting your lineup each week is what teams your players will be playing. For example, if your defense is facing a team that typically scores a lot of points, you may want to consider going with another defense.
Waiver wire and trades
During the season, you may add or drop players on your roster as needed. If one of your key players is injured, you will need to pick up someone to replace him. This can be done using the waiver wire (acquiring a player that is not on another team in your league) or via trade. If you see that another team in your league may need a player that you have and can afford to lose, you can offer that player in a trade for a player that you could get more use out of.
The objective of fantasy football is to accumulate more points each week than your opponent. On offense, your players will score the most points by scoring touchdowns. Whether it’s your quarterback throwing for one, your running back rushing for one, or your receiver catching one, you will be given the most points by having players on your team that score touchdowns. Other ways to score points include completions, receptions, yards and catches by your offensive players. On defense, your main source of points come from interceptions, fumble recoveries, and sacks.
Whether you’re playing for big money or just for fun, fantasy football is extremely competitive and addicting. Make sure you get to know the players on your team and how they are playing. Setting your lineup with the players who score the most points each week will give you the best chance of winning.
Ok girls, those are the basics of fantasy football. Now it’s on you to use what you’ve learned and start preparing for next year’s draft. Promise to take it easy on your boyfriends.
Contribution by: Kyle Tucker