The thrill of fantasy football

The popular fall pastime for football fans has grown increasingly popular.


Many new fantasy football managers use cheat sheets such as this one to assist them in selecting the best players.

Kara Hazelton, Editor

Fall is synonymous with many things: colorful leaves, chilly weather and the beginning of the school year. However, the advent of the fantasy football season in September is just as exciting for some.  

“Basically, you draft real players playing football, and then they score points. You accrue points based on their touchdowns, their yards, their touches, the list goes on and on,” said John Daigle, a contributor to sports website NBC Sports Edge, of the way that the game works.

At the end of the football week, which includes games on Thursday, Sunday and Monday, the player with the most points in either a two-person matchup or an entire league matchup wins, depending on how that league is set up.

After being established back in 1962, the popular activity for many avid National Football League (NFL) fans has grown exponentially. The Fantasy Sports Trade Association was founded in 1999, and ESPN states that there are currently about 40 million fantasy football participants in the U.S.

Beyond just the game itself, fantasy football has also inspired countless podcasts, websites and weekly columns. This has grown the concept into an industry worth more than $7.2 billion, according to database company Statista. Many players are eager to grow the game even more.

“I want a fantasy media network. I want a fantasy TV channel. I want to expand so far beyond what we think we are tapped out on,” said Daigle.

Fantasy football can be especially enticing because of the amount of control that it offers managers, as well as the way that it encourages them to look at weekly games in a whole new light.

“I think it has been popular because it gives an extra layer for fans to root for when watching a game,” said Syracuse University junior Will Shea, who’s been playing for over a decade, “You have a collection of players that you consider your own and you root for on a very stringent basis.”

At Central York High School (CYHS), discussion about fantasy football is as widespread as ever, with many peers comparing notes about player performance and who to insert into their lineups.

“You can keep it with friends or a bunch of other people. It can be somewhat competitive and somewhat not,” said CYHS junior Nathaniel Morris, “This is my second or third year playing, and I’m in the middle of the pack.”

Regardless of whether you are a new player or an experienced veteran, if you chose to engage in fantasy football this year, here’s to hoping that the remainder of your season is successful.