Saturday, June 8, 2013

Fantasy Football League Payout Ideas for 2013


  Fantasy Football is a skill and strategy game although you do have to have some luck in order to be successful. Most players begin by playing in standard leagues that are free of charge. First timers typically choose the free of charge leagues because they're trying to learn the game and either don't like to gamble or don't trust themselves enough to wager. After a year or two of learning the game they tend to advance into a cash league. What most players learn is that free leagues tend to lack competitiveness and excitement and most teams quit by years end. There is nothing better than a guy who brags about his Fantasy Football Championship in one of his free leagues.

FREE Fantasy Football Tip #2345 = NEVER EVER brag about your Fantasy Football Championship if you play in FREE leagues.

  Most cash fantasy football players play fantasy football because they love the game but also love the competitive nature of fantasy football cash leagues. Most of the time cash leagues keep all teams active throughout the season. When playing in cash leagues it is very important to understand the league set up and cash payouts. A lot of new fantasy football cash sites have popped up offering public cash leagues to players who register online and play on their site. The negative side of these sites is that they do charge a service fee for hosting your league.  
  As a fantasy football commissioner in a cash league it is your responsibility to manage your league set up while offering fair and legit payout rewards for your league members. Below is a list of some different payout ideas and options for your fantasy football leagues. 

10 Team Payout Options
One Division 
60% Playoff Champion
30% Playoff Runner Up
10% Regular Season Most Points Scored 
6 teams make the playoffs (head to head record)

Two Divisions 
50% Playoff Champion
25% Playoff Runner Up
10% Division A Regular Season Winner 
10% Division B Regular Season Winner 
5% Regular Season Most Points Scored
6 teams make the playoffs (head to head record)

Other Ideas and Options:
Weekly High Score Payouts- Offering a weekly high score payout adds a little more excitement to each week. Teams not only are competing against their weekly match up but also against every other team in the league. This will offer team owners a chance to win some of their league fees back during the regular season which also softens the blow of upset in playoffs or a bad beat. 
10% Pot to Playoff Fantasy Football- After week 16 or 17 in some leagues the fantasy football season is over but you could spice up your league and change that. Typically 9 or 11 guys depending on your league size are chomping at the bit to get another shot at fantasy success after not making it happen during the normal fantasy football season. Playoff fantasy football will soften the withdrawal symptoms for some of those guys and get them pumped up to continue watching football into the playoffs. The best part of budgeting this into your preseason payouts is that nobody can back out and you do not need to worry about filling up a playoff fantasy football league. You may have to use a different website for playoff fantasy football but ESPN and other major sites offer it for free. 
Random Payout Options: Leagues where entry fees reach over $50 you have some wiggle room to offer fun additional payouts to spread some cash among league members. These options include: Cash for the Highest Individual Scoring Week, Highest Weekly Team Score, Most Points Against in the Regular Season, Biggest Blowout, Lowest Points Scored Buys Beverages for next years draft. 
Another option to reward regular season play is to place an amount on the top seeds for the playoffs. 1-3 and offer 30% of your total season pot divided up to reward those who make the playoffs. #1 seed = 15% #2 seed = 10% and #3 seed = 5%. This again will offer a reward to the best team of the regular season. 
Another great option to add more payouts to your league is to put a small prize on a year long NFL pick em. Yahoo has a great set up to incorporate a side NFL pick em game to your league.

12 Team Payout Options
One Division 
60% Playoff Champion
30% Playoff Runner Up
10% Regular Season Most Points Scored 
8 teams make the playoffs (head to head record) 
Two Divisions 
50% Playoff Champion
25% Playoff Runner Up
10% Division A Regular Season Winner 
10% Division B Regular Season Winner 
5% Regular Season Most Points Scored
8 teams make the playoffs (head to head record)

  Twelve team leagues offer a larger pot but also offer a more difficult opportunity for players to win championships and win money. So essentially adding side pots and payouts for your 12 team league is a great idea. Adding in free agent transaction fees can help you create a larger pot to fund some of the crazier payouts. In twelve team leagues I personally like the weekly high score payout options or the two division winner regular season payout option. Typically the regular season is 13 weeks long and by the end of the regular season you have a very good idea of the top teams in your league. I like rewarding the top regular season winners because over the 13 week span they remained consistent out performing the rest of the league. 

Toilet Bowl Payouts- 
Am I crazy for offering a toilet bowl payout? Absolutely not. Don't break the bank but in a league where only 60% of the teams make the playoffs I would highly recommend offering a small pot for the toilet bowl. This pot should hopefully help keep teams active for the full season. 

  So really you have two choices when deciding you league payout schedule. Either you include side payouts or you keep it standard. If you do decide to offer side payouts typically 15-20% of the total league fees is a good number to go with.

  In summary league payouts can make or break an experience for your league members so it is very important to take the time and ask your league members for feedback. When I am figuring out payouts for my leagues I try to find a happy medium of rewarding championship teams but also offering others a chance to gain some money back outside of the playoffs. A couple pointers from my experience...
- Playoff Champions should get 50-60% of your leagues entry fees. 
- Don't be afraid to mix in some FUN payout options. 
- Do Not just pay Winner & Second place of the playoffs 
- Learn what excites your league members and focus on those payouts. 

Payout Discussion Topics for your league? 
For regular season payouts:
What determines a better team.. The total points for or the head to head record? 
Could we replace 3rd place for some fun payout options?
Should we offer weekly payouts for high score?
Do we want a few large payouts or a wide spread distribution? 

Do you have any fantasy football league payout ideas? We would love to hear from you. 
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