What is one-week fantasy football?

Ready to start playing one-week fantasy football? Awesome. You should be. Weekly fantasy football is a blast.

Let’s start by covering some of the basics. Here are answers to the most common daily fantasy questions:

What is one-week fantasy football?

Weekly fantasy football follows the same model as traditional, season-long fantasy football, but compresses the action into a single week from start-to-finish. This includes everything from research and team selection, to contest results and pay-outs.

Like season-long fantasy football, one-week fantasy players will draft a team of real-world NFL players who then score points according to set scoring rules. (These scoring rules can vary slightly between gaming sites, but we’ll talk about that in a bit.) However, instead of being stuck with the same team through an entire season, weekly fantasy football contests last just one weekend from Thursday-Monday.

What are the key differences between one-week fantasy football and season-long fantasy football?

The major differentiators between weekly and season-long fantasy football are:

Speed: Weekly fantasy sports are (obviously) quicker from start-to-finish than season-long fantasy. This means you get to start over and pick an entirely new set of players each week. It also means you’re able to enjoy your victories and get paid quicker, too.

Competition: In one-week fantasy football, you’re not competing with a small league made-up of your friends and family. Instead, you’re competing with anywhere from one player in a head-to-head contest, to hundreds or even thousands of entrants in a larger tournament.

Player selection: In season-long fantasy, only one team can own a specific player at any given time. However, in one-week fantasy football, an NFL player theoretically be owned by every team. The caveat is that players have salaries, and your team must stay under a salary cap as you construct your roster.

What makes one-week fantasy football better than season-long fantasy football?

The biggest pros of weekly fantasy football are:

Variety – you get to own more and different players throughout the year.
Match-ups – you can pick and choose NFL players based off each week’s real-world match-ups, rather than being “stuck” with the athletes you originally drafted for a season-long team.
Injuries – in weekly fantasy, injuries won’t impact you beyond the week that they happen.
Forgiveness – picked a bad team? Don’t worry. You get a new lease on life and can start over with new players next week.
Reward – in one-week fantasy football, you don’t have to wait until January to collect your trophies and cash prizes.

Is weekly fantasy football legal?

Yes. One-week fantasy football is just as legal as season-long fantasy football. When the federal government passed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006, it included specific language that declared weekly fantasy football to be legal.

I want to play. How do I get started?

The two biggest weekly fantasy sites right now are DraftKings and FanDuel. You can click these links to create an account in seconds. If you sign up through RotoGrinders, you’ll get a 100% deposit bonus, as well as access to our premium content and RotoGrinders incentives.

If you want to explore other weekly fantasy football gaming sites, you also can check out our daily fantasy sports site reviews where we breakdown all weekly football sites and can give you a full rundown of the landscape.

So we’ve covered “what” weekly fantasy football is. In the upcoming Part 2 of this series, we’ll move on to actual gameplay. Stay tuned.

About the Author

  • Jonathan Moreland (Jonan)

  • Jonathan “Jonan” Moreland is a member of the RotoGrinders team. He likes boxing, whiskey and burritos. You can follow him on Twitter @morelandj.

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