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If you’re like me then your fantasy football experience started out with a simple standard league. At that point you really didn’t know just how much variety there was in the fantasy world, between league formats, scoring systems, and the numerous other settings that you can tweak. Soon though, you wanted branch out, maybe with PPR or IDP, or even a dynasty league once you got more serious. If you’ve tried all that though and still don’t have your fantasy fill, take a look at these league formats that can add some variety to your fantasy resume.


53-Man Roster

The idea of this league format is that you draft a full roster. You may be thinking to yourself, “Don’t I draft a full roster in all of my leagues?” While that may be true, I’m not talking about drafting a full fantasy roster but rather a full NFL roster. You’ll still be drafting the normal skill positions that you’re used to like QB, RB, and WR. However, in addition you’ll also need to draft every offensive, defensive, and special teams position just like every team in the NFL.

If this seems daunting it’s because it absolutely is. Even fantasy managers who have been playing for a decade or more will find themselves a bit overwhelmed the first time they join a 53-Man League. Personally, though, I think that’s part of the appeal for managers used to most other game types. You can truly get that feeling you had with the first league you ever joined, where you were unsure of what exactly you should be doing, yet so excited to learn and become a better manager.


Kicker League

This is a much less serious league format, and one that you probably won’t take very seriously. However, it can still be a ton of fun to play casually with your friends, even those with little fantasy experience.

This format is exactly what it sounds like. Instead of drafting multiple skill positions, you will only roster kickers. There are a lot of different ways to adjust the settings for a kicker league, but here is my personal favorite: Six teams, four kickers on each team, no bench. After that you can alter the scoring for kickers to your liking. With these settings you will start every kicker you have on your team each week, and because there is no bench there will always be eight kickers available on the waiver.

This isn’t going to be a league that you spend more than 15-20 minutes on each week. However while it may not be your main league it can still be something fun to do on the side, especially if you find a good group of competitive friends to play with.


11v1 League

Anyone who has played fantasy football for a few years has had this situation happen to them at least once. Your team outperforms their projection by a mile and gives you the second highest score that week, yet you end up with a loss because, of course, you were matched up with the highest scorer. Not when you’re playing 11v1 however, because in this format you play every other team every single week.

So if you have the highest score during week one of the fantasy season your record will be 11-0 because you won in a matchup with every other team. If you have the lowest score then you’ll be sitting at 0-11. This scoring type is probably the most “fair” out of any format because your record will accurately reflect how well you perform each week, rather than just being a win/loss.
If you’ve looked through this list and still don’t see any leagues that appeal to you or that you haven’t tried, don’t fret because these are just a fraction of what fantasy football has to offer. People find new ways to play fantasy nearly every season, and you always have the option of creating your own fantasy format that will be completely unique to you!

I'm a sportswriter from Upstate New York living in San Francisco. I love all sports but I'm especially passionate about football and basketball and an absolute fanatic for the Giants and Knicks. When I'm not watching sports I can be found spending way too much time playing the fantasy versions of them. Follow me on twitter: @holtoncaulfield

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