Okay, let’s get one thing straight right off the bat, we are talking about American football here, you know the sport with the funny shaped ball! Anyway, let’s not waste time on semantics I have stuff to do.
The way fantasy football works is like this, every participant or owner as we are called in the Fantasy Sports World, drafts or buys through an auction a team of players. For the purposes of this introduction we are going to assume the fantasy football league is NFL, but it could also be based on college players. The way the actual completion plays out depends upon the individual fantasy football league you happen to belong to. In some fantasy football leagues the winner is determined by total points at the end of a season, while others actually play against each other weekly with the team having the best record at the end of the fantasy season being declared winner of that fantasy football league.
The internet has been responsible for taking fantasy football from a hobby played out in sports bars and individual homes to a multi-billion dollar industry now according to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association. According to the FSTA, nearly twenty million players participate in fantasy sports and the industry has a growth rate of around ten percent. Fantasy Football is the most popular of all the fantasy sports available and continues to grow even faster with the explosion of websites and software to help with the game as well as the proliferation of fantasy football magazines available today.
Most fantasy football leagues will be made up of around ten or twelve individual teams which will have their own mock drafts before the season starts. Because you are drafting real players and their performance really matters it pays to stay in touch with what is going on with them during the off season and pre-season. For example if you draft a Ricky Williams and he decides to go off and smoke dope, too bad, you are screwed out of a running back! In some fantasy football leagues each owner must draft a new team every year, while in others you may be allowed to keep a handful of players which will not be entered in the draft. Some leagues have even gone as far as to create so-called dynasty leagues where an owner may maintain his team from the previous season and only draft incoming rookies. This is very similar to how a real football league works.
Players that are not drafted are designated as “free agents” and may be chosen during the season by trading players that an owner may currently have and making them free agents. The rules that govern this practice vary from league to league.