How to Start a Fantasy Football League [2023 Guide]

Running a fantasy football league is a lot of work. From vetting owners to drafting rosters, there are many steps to take.

The first step is to choose a platform and decide how you want to set your league up. Then, invite friends to join.


Draft day is one of the most exciting and memorable parts of the fantasy football season. It’s the moment when all the hard work you’ve put into your team will be on display, and it’s also when you’ll get to see how your opponents stack up against your own.

The best way to prepare for draft day is to read up on position rankings and mock drafts. These resources will help you identify which players are most likely to be drafted in the first and second rounds. They’ll also give you an idea of where to pick players when you’re drafting yourself.

You should also check out current mock drafts and real drafts so that you can see how player values have changed from the preseason to the real season. This can make a significant difference in your draft strategies.

Lastly, it’s a good idea to keep track of trades that are occurring throughout the season. Often times, owners can get the players they want in trades without having to spend too much of their own money.

If you’re in a league where everyone is able to trade, don’t be afraid to do so. This can be a great way to get players that you may have missed out on in your draft.


When setting up your league, you’ll need to determine a schedule that works for all owners. This is a critical part of the process, as it will ensure that everyone can get to the draft and final team rosters on time and without any issues.

The best way to do this is to set a date and draft type in advance, and make sure everyone understands how the process will work. Most leagues hold their drafts around the weekend before the NFL season starts, and there are a variety of draft types to choose from.

For example, you can opt for a snake or serpentine draft, an auction style, or even a linear draft. Whatever you do, make sure that each owner has a clear understanding of what they’re signing up for, including the cost and any applicable deadlines.

You’ll also need to decide on a scoring system for your league. There are several different types, but the most popular is head-to-head. Teams play each other every week, and the player with the most fantasy points wins.

This is a fun competition that many people enjoy, and it can be a great way to meet new friends. It’s also an excellent incentive for players to pick their lineups wisely, since they’ll be competing against other players in real life.


Matchups are a key part of fantasy football. They determine who will start and who will sit for a particular game. They also determine how many points you will earn for the week.

The best way to understand how matchups affect your team is to take a closer look at the opposing defenses and the players who are on them. Each week, we rank all 32 defenses in order of most favorable to least favorable for opposing players at all four skill positions (quarterback, running back, wide receiver and tight end).

We use this data to create a “Matchups Map” each week that evaluates each opposing defense in terms of its fantasy impact on opposing teams. We use a system called “adjusted fantasy points allowed,” which reflects how much more or less than players’ weekly PPR fantasy point averages that defense held opponents at a position.

In this space, we calibrate these data to reflect how each defense fared relative to the difficulty of its schedule. This is a much fairer way to evaluate the quality of individual matchups than relying on seasonal totals alone.


Trades are a great way to improve your team and are an important part of the fantasy football experience. Before you start a trade, it is important to understand the process and know what to expect.

Depending on your league, trades may be approved by a commissioner or vetoed by both parties before they are executed. Most trades can take up to 48 hours to be reviewed, so it is important to know the rules and expectations for your league before attempting a trade.

It is also important to remember that trading in fantasy football is not a zero-sum game. Each player’s value varies according to their situation. This makes it necessary to negotiate as a team to find the best possible deal.

You should try to swap depth for positional upgrades. This is a common strategy in fantasy football and can help you build the best roster possible week in and week out.

The easiest way to make a good trade is to target other owners that need an upgrade at a particular position. This might be owners that drafted Jamaal Charles, Kenny Britt or Steven Jackson but are struggling at the quarterback spot.

Similarly, you can look for owners that need a running back or wide receiver. These positions are common to fill in the waiver wire.

Once you have found a match-up that works for both parties, the deal should be processed immediately. This should happen on the league website.

Draft day

Draft day is the moment when the teams in your fantasy football league get together and decide which players they’re going to take. It can be a lot of fun, but it also can be a bit stressful.

The key to a successful draft is to prepare well ahead of time so that your league can get off on the right foot. You need to have a draft board ready, and you should be prepared for any trades that occur during the process.

A draft board should have all the eligible NFL players ranked by position. It can be as simple as a poster board, but you may want to go more elaborate and include a set of player cards.

Before the draft, make sure each owner has a draft board to write down his picks. This will make it easier for everyone to track their choices and stay on top of the progress of the draft.

Your draft board should be updated throughout the entire process, so a good idea is to keep an erasable white board handy. You can also use a set of player cards and stick them to the board with a pin or tape.

Organizing a fantasy football league is a great way to spend time with friends and family. It’s also a great way to learn more about the NFL and the players who play in it.

The most important thing is to make your draft as exciting and enjoyable as possible. There are many ways to do this, but one of the best ways is to create hype and momentum before the draft. This will help to ensure that the draft is a success and encourage team bonding.

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