Fantasy football is back and it’s as big as ever.
It seems like every year more people partake in the annual ritual of drafting a team of NFL players, with some drafts between friends involving trips to places like Las Vegas or other gambling destinations.
Sports bars now market to the Fantasy Football draft participants, offering package deals for groups to come in and have their draft at their business.
The cable show “The League,” which was built around a yearly fantasy league between friends, became a cult favorite.
It’s gotten that big.
Draft your team of NFL players and manage your roster throughout the season. And this is not for just males. One of my daughters successfully managed a team in a league last season, posting the best regular season record.
In recent years, the emergence of daily fantasy sites such as DraftKings or Fan Duel have added a new dimension to the fantasy football world. In daily fantasy, you draft a new team every week and instead of competing head-to-head, you take on thousands of other people in hopes of finishing high enough up the ladder to at least get your investment back.
You have a set salary cap of $50,000 to build your team. For instance, at this point the most expensive quarterback is Tom Brady at $7,200. Le’Veon Bell, despite being questionable for this week, is the top priced running back at $9,400. It’s all about the balance of the superstars and the value plays.
The DraftKings contests I play involve picking a quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, a tight end, a flex player, and a defense/special teams player.
I play both types of fantasy football, but have become a big fan of DraftKings. In addition to professional football, the company also has college football fantasy.
There is a big difference in playing college football as compared to professional football. In the NFL it really is all about the players each week, picking the right matchups.
In college football I have found success playing systems rather than players. Let’s face it, in college football the names change every year, but the systems remain the same.
Last weekend I ended up doubling my investment just by picking schools, rather than players. I honestly was not familiar with one player on my roster, but I knew their respective schools would rack up the yards and points. They did and I cashed a decent payoff.
It’s the system in the college ranks that produces winners.
Last season, Oklahoma led the NCAA in total offense, followed by Oklahoma State, Louisville, Memphis and the University of Central Florida. UCF led the nation in scoring.
Granted you had players like Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield guiding Oklahoma, but the reality is, each year the Sooners are going to rack up the yards no matter who is calling the signals.
Last week in the season opener, the Sooners racked up 650 yards of offense and 63 points against what many felt was a decent Florida Atlantic team. Another major factor when playing college games is you must worry about the schools that alternate quarterbacks, something you don’t deal with in the NFL.
I recommend giving DraftKings a shot. Playing daily fantasy sports is a blast and allows you to have a new team each week. When playing college football, you can have money riding on games from 9 a.m. right up until close to midnight!
Starting next week, we will have a fantasy column giving some tips as to who to play and who to sit! Make sure to check the sports wagering section each week for fantasy advice.
By Dennis Miller