Part 2 - The Different Types of Fantasy Leagues
By Chris Smith
July 12th, 2011

"By failing to prepare you are preparing to fail." -- Benjamin Franklin

This section provides a rundown on the various types of fantasy leagues that one can participate in. From standard redraft leagues, auction leagues, survivor leagues, dynasty leagues and IDP leagues, there are many styles of play that offer various challenges and enjoyments to the fantasy footballer.

Standard Redraft Leagues (Head to Head)

The standard redraft leagues are by far the most common fantasy leagues. The league has a draft that is usually serpentine in nature (first pick overall in round one will pick last in round two, the last pick in round one will pick first in round two, etc.). The owners will pick out a starting lineup each week depending on the regulations of the league and match up against a different owner each week. Scoring more points than your opponent results in a win whereas scoring fewer points will result in a loss. The best win/loss records meet in the playoffs. Each new season, all of the NFL players go back into the pool and can be drafted all over again.

Example of Head to Head Competition:

Team One
Team Two
Pos
Starter
Pts
Pos
Starter
Pts
QB
Drew Brees
23
QB
Aaron Rodgers
18
RB
Arian Foster
17
RB
Daniel Thomas
6
RB
Ryan Torain
14
RB
Fred Jackson
16
WR
Larry Fitzgerald
16
WR
Michael Crabtree
10
WR
Mike Thomas
14
WR
Mario Manningham
11
WR
Deion Branch
8
WR
Andre Johnson
22
TE
Chris Cooley
7
TE
Jimmy Graham
5
PK
Alex Henery
7
PK
Garrett Hartley
6
Def
Baltimore Ravens
7
Def
Green Bay Packers
10
Starters' Total Points
113
Starters' Total Points
104

Obviously, Team One would win the above head-to-head matchup by a score of 113-104.

Standard Redraft Leagues (Total Points)

These leagues start off the same as head-to-head leagues. Once the draft is finished however the ultimate goal is to finish with the most points overall instead of the most wins. There is no weekly head-to-head schedule and it is simply a matter of building up as many points as possible. Over the last decade or so, the total points' leagues have become less popular.

Example of Total Points League:

Franchise
PtsFor
Bench
Power
W
L
Smith's Canadian Invasion
2549.6
1107.1
43.4
147
40
Jeff Pasquino
2284.1
905.7
35.0
101
85
Sigmund Bloom
2247.2
1010.5
32.4
103
84
Jason Wood
2325.2
1068.1
32.3
107
80
Borbely's Bunker Brigade
2363.8
903.4
31.8
111
76
Enumerating Odds
2143.5
1018.2
30.2
86
101
Bob Henry
2179.0
939.2
30.1
90
97
earl's finest
2173.1
945.6
29.3
93
94
Lawyers, Guns, & Money
2147.4
1044.8
26.8
97
90
Sploosh Fighters
2116.9
1076.6
26.4
87
100
Wimer's Mjolnir
1930.7
1072.6
20.9
55
131
Displaced Dipsticks
1836.4
864.4
17.0
44
143

Auction Draft Leagues

Auction drafts are a relatively new type of fantasy league to the casual fantasy gamer. These drafts can be a ton of fun and offer unique challenges but it also takes up a lot more time on average than a standard draft. As an owner in an auction draft, make sure to devote a block of six to ten hours in order to complete your draft. Each owner in this kind of league gets a sum of play money in which they will use in order to build their fantasy roster. Each owner can bid on any player on the auction block as long as he/she has enough money remaining to win the bid. The best part of an auction draft is simply that every player in the league is available to a fantasy owner. If an owner wants to build a squad featuring Arian Foster, Andre Johnson, LeSean McCoy, and Drew Brees as part of their starting unit, they can do so (although he won't have much, if any, money left to add other strong players).

Example of the first six bids of an Auction Draft:

Pos
Player Selected
Team
Draft By
Cost
QB
Peyton Manning
Ind
Team One
$28
RB
Arian Foster
Hou
Team Four
$75
WR
Reggie Wayne
Ind
Team Seven
$31
RB
Ryan Torain
Was
Team Four
$16
WR
Miles Austin
Dal
Team Ten
$29
TE
Antonio Gates
SD
Team One
$29

"Thus those skilled in war subdue the enemy's army without battle .... They conquer by strategy." - Sun Tzu 'Art of War'

Keeper Leagues

Keeper leagues are very similar to the leagues above. The difference being that the owner can keep a predetermined number of players from his draft in the previous season to carry forward into the new campaign. In some leagues you can keep one player, in others three and in others five or more. Sometimes it costs an owner a draft pick to keep a player from the previous season and sometimes no penalty is paid. It really depends on the leagues rules.

Example of a 3-player Keeper League: (the teams will keep the players in blue)

Team One
Team Two
Pos
Starter
Team
Pos
Starter
Team
QB
Eli Manning
NYG
QB
Matt Schaub
Hou
QB
Sam Bradford
StL
QB
Joe Flacco
Bal
QB
Kevin Kolb
Phi
QB
Tim Tebow
Den
RB
Knowshon Moreno
Den
RB
Ryan Grant
GB
RB
Arian Foster
Hou
RB
Ray Rice
Bal
RB
Peyton Hillis
Cle
RB
Jahvid Best
Det
RB
Joseph Addai
Ind
RB
C.J. Spiller
Buf
WR
Randy Moss
Ten
WR
Terrell Owens
Cin
WR
Santana Moss
Was
WR
Michael Crabtree
SF
WR
Calvin Johnson
Det
WR
Roddy White
Atl
WR
Roy Williams
Dal
WR
Vincent Jackson
SD
TE
Kellen Winslow
TB
WR
Nate Burleson
Det
TE
Tony Gonzalez
Atl
TE
Marcedes Lewis
Jac
PK
Mason Crosby
GB
TE
Nate Kaeding
SD
DT
Dallas Cowboys
Dal
PK
Dan Carpenter
Mia
DT
New York Giants
NYG
DT
Atlanta Falcons
Atl
DT
New Orleans Saints
NO
DT
Pittsburgh Steelers
Pit

Dynasty Leagues

A dynasty league is similar to a keeper league but each team can keep their entire roster of players from one year to the next. After the inaugural draft in year one, the players will stay on the team they are drafted to unless they are traded away or released. Each offseason a rookie draft will take place in which the owners can add talent to their rosters. These leagues can be really challenges to rebuild a poor roster as it may take years of wise trading and shrewd drafting in order to rise to the top. Great leagues if you want to challenge yourself.

Survivor Draft Leagues

These leagues can use either the auction draft or the standard draft. Once the rosters have been filled out however the rules are much different. Similar to the television show, Survivor, in this style of league, the team with the fewest points scored in a week is booted out for the season. It is very important in this kind of league to build a well-rounded squad that can withstand the perils of injuries, bye weeks and other similar challenges. Usually in this kind of league, no free agent pickups or trades are allowed. Because of the format, there is possibly a higher degree of luck involved as you can have one back week and be kicked out of the league.

IDP Leagues

These leagues use defensive players as well as offensive players. This is only for the diehard fantasy player as it takes a lot more research, knowledge and experience to know not only what defensive players to draft but when.

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