Fantasy football is a great way for followers of the game to take it to a whole new level. The various participants join a competitive league as owners of various teams. They earn fantasy points by using real life statistics of football players who are currently playing in various football leagues. The owner of each league gets the opportunity to draft football players and then create a team containing various offensive and defensive positions. The player then has to track the performance of all the players in the team as they play their real life football games. The team owner then scores points depending on how well the collective players perform.
There are fantasy football teams for American football as well as for international football, also called soccer in the United States. Fantasy football players who follow American football typically draft players from the NFL or NCAA. This has become a very popular phenomenon and there are reliable estimates that more than 30 million people play this game worldwide. Needless to say, the time spent playing fantasy football escalates during the football season and the competition between fantasy team owners can get very fierce. Most fantasy football leagues are available online and are accessible for free. This only adds to their growing popularity. There are leagues that have only 4 teams and then there are huge leagues that have up to 200 teams.
What is really significant about fantasy football is its impact on the behavior of football fans. Football fans have always been known to be passionately attached to this game, but fantasy sports take it a step further. It is a known fact that people who play these fantasy games develop an added attraction for the sport and they spend more time watching football, both on television and in stadiums. They are known to buy more expensive tickets and their total spend in stadiums is higher than that of normal fans.
There are also detractors of such games who argue that they have changed the way people support the game. Avid fantasy football players are known to support players across various teams, particularly if they comprise a ‘dream team’ owned by them. They no longer have the traditional support for football clubs, and this is causing drops in the revenues of these clubs. It is very common for a person seeing a football match to support a person on each team because they both happen to belong to his fantasy team. Obviously, this leaves very little space for old club allegiances.
These reservations apart, there is no doubt at all that fantasy football adds another dimension to the actual game and allows fans to enjoy it on a higher level. There is no consensus on which type of football is better, but there is no denying the fact that both these types of football add value to each other. The fact that so many people are playing these games, and that their numbers are only growing, indicates that this is a great way of enjoying the sport of football.