When you play fantasy, you make a clear view of the real NFL, then compete against other people's views in the real games. There are leagues for pretty much every sport, fantasy football is the most known in the United State and thirty million people played it last year. Though the real game is free to play, most leagues involve money that is bet at the start of the season and paid out to the winner in the end.
This football game is the reason football news is now covered and it's the reason why there's a big popular channel that simply comes out instead of showing a complete game. Starting in the 1950s and '60s, a few different groups of worried fans hit upon the idea, with fantasy baseball most known at first.
In 1999, Yahoo became the first major site to host leagues for free. The height of all fantasy sports and football has grown in the years since, and people now use free online platforms. For a while, most leagues separate themselves from sports, thinking of them as a form of gambling. In 2002, the NFL held research showing that fantasy players watched more football, and the league began actively promoting the game and even hosting the league on its website.
To play in a season-long league, you register at one of a few different websites, either with people you know. You and the other owners hold a draft, in which each of you picks the NFL star you want on your team. Each player can only be on one team in your league. After the play and throughout the game you can see with your record by picking up players who didn't get played, dropping stars you no longer want, and trading with other owners.
It is one quarterback, two running backs, two wide receivers, a tight end, a kicker, and a team's defense, although these numbers vary a bit from the league. At a start, you need to take out the footballers who were injured or on a bye week (each NFL team has one week off during the year). Each week, your starters go up against the starters of another owner in your league each week. You get points for the yards, touchdowns, field goals, and so does your opponent. At the end of the week's games, whoever has more points gets a win. This goes on for the whole year and leading to a champion.
The starting idea is that you want to draft a player at each position who will get you lots of points. Every expert has their own personal thinking and game plan, there's generally a basic understanding. SB Nation has an excellent guide, with lists of the top overall team, the top player at each position, "sleepers". However, if you don't feel like putting forth any effort, you can always just rely on your league platform's default rankings as you draft. If you don't even want to do that, you can just ignore the draft and do something else with your time, and the system will auto-draft your players for you.
Absolutely not. Though your gameplay results might be very exciting to you, the truth is that to other people especially ones who aren't in your league hearing about the player you picked is a lot like hearing about your dreams or the upset that ruined your NCAA bracket. This goes for the regular season, too. Your great wins and painful losses simply have no meaning beyond the ten or twelve persons in your league, if that. Anyone who plays fantasy is guilty of disobeying this rule most of the time.
One factor is that it enters the same hungry feeling that drives our love of March Madness brackets. Watching sports is fun, but the feelings of having a bit of control over the outcome can be even more exciting. We can't control whether our team wins or lose, we can control how our fantasy team does. Another is that fantasy breaks down a big, complex game into something more manageable. Figuring out why real-life teams win or lose is really hard. But making things down to simple stats like yards and touchdowns gives football a simple view.