So you’ve picked your league site, chosen to play IDP (Individual Defensive Players), and are starting to recruit your friends and family as managers in your league. For the sake of this specific column entry, we are going to assume that you do not think you will be able to fill your league very well. We’ll say that you could only get five other players to commit.
A league of six managers generally comes with an over-saturation of players. I typically shoot for 10 players as my ideal, even though the max is usually 12. Ten managers allows for a very good distribution of talent, and requires managers to do their research to find depth players.
A strategy to combat the over-saturation of players in a six person league is to add a second quarterback position. This both allows players who can’t get one of the four consistent elite quarterbacks to still be competitive with their combined scores, as well as uses more talent on the field. It also means that players’ benches may have more than one backup quarterback, keeping more talent in the pool of players.
I’m not a fan of playing this strategy with more than six managers. I don’t feel like it’s a true form of fantasy football, because teams don’t play with two quarterbacks in real life. I just wouldn’t downplay it if it is necessary for your league.
It’s often hard to get people to join your league the first year. Be diligent in your asking, but be sure to get people who will stick with your league. Also make sure you are upfront with any odd league rules you wish to impose.
I’ve been in at least one league that didn’t allow New England Patriots players to be used, and have seen managers “rage quit” because the rule screwed them when it was enforced. It’s often good advice to approach rules on a democratic basis. People like to know that their gripes can be heard and things can change if necessary.
More often than not, your league will begin small and grow as the years go by. You’ll have managers who stop paying attention to their leagues, don’t come back and need to be replaced. Don’t feel bad if the growth of your league is slow, because in the end you will have a solid group of managers, and friends!