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Second Year of the Best Fantasy League Going

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I thought I'd update you on the second year of my Fantasy Owners League. We had our draft last night and it was an absolute hoot. The goal of this league is to provide maximum enjoyment for minimal effort, while making every game played of interest to the league. The solution to this riddle was to auction off all the teams in the league, making us true franchise owners, instead of the players. After the draft night, no further work is required to have full-throttle participation for the whole season. Plus, you're cheering for teams to win, not players to score, which is much more consistent with what's happening on the field. Finally, our league gets more interesting and more relevant as the playoffs approach and peaks in the playoffs, something regular fantasy football has never been able to achieve.

The simple rules are that everyone starts with 200 points and we have an 8-man league so that gives 1600 points available to be used on auction night. We tweaked the scoring a little this year to have the pool end on the Divisional Round of playoffs, the last 8-team day of action, as that is the peak of interest in the pool. Points are awarded during the season as follows: 2 per win (512), 20 for reaching the playoffs (240), 24 for #1 seed (48), 50 for losing in the Divisional Round (200) and 150 for Winning in the Divisional Round (600). 512 + 240 + 48 + 200 + 600 = 1,600.

The wrinkle that makes it fun over time is that you can keep a team for the following year at a cost of last year's auction result + 1/3 of their earnings. This will force all the successful teams back into the mix, but makes the stinky teams this year possibly attractive as keepers for next year.

Fixed-unit auction pools are always interesting and the dynamics ebb and flow between teams going cheap and dear. Points unused at the end of the auction evaporate, and the last few teams can go for interesting amounts.

Our top teams chosen were the Patriots (113), Packers (102), Ravens (88) and Chargers (88 and the highest priced paid to retain a team from last year). The cheapest were generally retentions, being the Rams (14 - retained), Lions (14 - retained), Bills (16 - retained), Broncos (16 - retained) and Chiefs (16 - not retained at 28).

Units earned during the season are roughly 10 for those teams that miss the playoffs, 40 for one-and-out teams, 90 for Divisional Round losers and 190 for Divisional Round winners.

You should all form leagues and get a trophy for this fun format. It's not too late as the first week hardly means anything in the NFL!

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