Fantasy Football - Footballguys Forums
BoltBacker

Fantasy Football: Evolving or Devolving?

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, BoltBacker said:

When you say "deal with that level of complexity" do you mean they don't want to take the time to look at the sheet that a computer generated making all the calculations for them? Or do you mean they don't want to think for themselves at a draft because it's more difficult to find some cheatsheet online that someone has prepared for them?

I'm having a tough time following this complexity hurdle everyone is talking about. I used to have to scan the USAToday to score all the yards on Monday mornings. That was a time consuming level of complexity that was added to fantasy football at the time(and made my hands black with ink at the end of the process).

Maybe it's because I'm a fancy person but just changing the formula that a machine uses to calculate results doesn't seem complex to me at all. I'm not attacking you btw, because it seems there are a whole lot of folks that think changing a formula for a machine to calculate results IS complex. I'm just trying to understand that viewpoint better.

?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎7‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 5:47 PM, Riversco said:

In order to try to make fantasy football more popular, skill was removed.  For example, the values of passing yards and passing TDs were lowered so that theres really so significant difference between QBs and its better to just draft them late.  Workhorse RBs are harder to predict and most teams dont play ball control anymore so taking an RB first isnt the guarantee of success it once was.  More people take WRs early but their TDs can be very random from year to year.  So most skill is now removed and its based on luck in order to try to keep the marginally interested people playing 

If you wanted to add skill then a place to start is to make passing TDs 6 points and interceptions worth -6.  If you backtest those rules then there is a very clear delineation between elite QBs and so-so QBs.   The draft would be more interesting too because going RB early, WR early, and QB early would all be viable.   But usually when i make this suggestion, people say its too much and lets make ints -3  and tds 5 and pretty soon were back to where we are with skillless leagues.

 

We use 6 points for a passing/rushing TD.  -3 for an INT or lost fumble.  -6 is a little too harsh of a penalty IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

When you say "deal with that level of complexity" do you mean they don't want to take the time to look at the sheet that a computer generated making all the calculations for them? Or do you mean they don't want to think for themselves at a draft because it's more difficult to find some cheatsheet online that someone has prepared for them?

I'm having a tough time following this complexity hurdle everyone is talking about. I used to have to scan the USAToday to score all the yards on Monday mornings. That was a time consuming level of complexity that was added to fantasy football at the time(and made my hands black with ink at the end of the process).

Maybe it's because I'm a fancy person but just changing the formula that a machine uses to calculate results doesn't seem complex to me at all. I'm not attacking you btw, because it seems there are a whole lot of folks that think changing a formula for a machine to calculate results IS complex. I'm just trying to understand that viewpoint better.

If the calculations are automated then yes this would save a lot of time.

However preparing for such a draft by more casual owners is something they likely do not feel comfortable with drafting for, unless they had a service or something doing those calculations for them. Even then, they might not feel comfortable with it if they are not able to understand why player X is worth more than player Y according to the rules.

Basic PPR does not require owners to know a lot of other things to get an understanding of who the best players are and who they should draft. When you start adding more scoring systems, starting requirements and so on, then owners may not feel as comfortable with their decisions, especially trying to compare the relative values of offensive players to IDPs.

Folks who draft off a cheat sheet or whatever will do so in any format I think.

The point is adding too much complexity can be a turn off for more casual FF players.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

When you say "deal with that level of complexity" do you mean they don't want to take the time to look at the sheet that a computer generated making all the calculations for them? Or do you mean they don't want to think for themselves at a draft because it's more difficult to find some cheatsheet online that someone has prepared for them?

I'm having a tough time following this complexity hurdle everyone is talking about. I used to have to scan the USAToday to score all the yards on Monday mornings. That was a time consuming level of complexity that was added to fantasy football at the time(and made my hands black with ink at the end of the process).

Maybe it's because I'm a fancy person but just changing the formula that a machine uses to calculate results doesn't seem complex to me at all. I'm not attacking you btw, because it seems there are a whole lot of folks that think changing a formula for a machine to calculate results IS complex. I'm just trying to understand that viewpoint better.

It just would take a specific group of people to enjoy that. Yes the computer calculates the scores, but many people want to be able to watch a game and see Kareem Hunt has 80 yards so I know how many points he has and did ok. Not then have to think about how many carries he had, what the average is, how many first downs he got, etc. Just lots of fantasy players like it simple and IMO there is nothing wrong with that. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, electric Ape said:

IMO some of you guys are thinking too much like scientists and not enough like game designers. The purpose of fantasy football rules shouldn’t be to most accurately reflect real player values, the purpose should be to make the game as fun as possible.

BoltBacker, if you’re proposing rules for like an expert league then your suggestion could work. But if you’re proposing that the entire industry should adopt negative decimal scoring per opportunity then respectfully your suggestion is terrible.

Here are some things the average joe sixpack finds fun:

--Simplicity

--Not having to learn new rules

--Being able to gauge how you’re doing without checking your app every few seconds or doing complicated math

--Positive scoring plays

--Not having negative scoring plays

I'm sure your intentions are good but in an effort to improve FF you're actually breaking a lot of things that work. The standard, mainstream rules that have helped the industry explode over the past 25 years are pretty damn good. That's not to say we can never deviate (superflex is a great deviation) but most attempts at that will lead to a worse game, not a better one.

Every part of this is correct.  I'm a strong believer that whatever rules you and your leaguemates want to use are fine, there's no "right" or "wrong" way to play, it's just whatever you and 11 of your friends agree to.  Most of us here are more hardcore than 99% of fantasy football players, and probably prefer rules that are more complex, more reflective of real value, provide more skill edge, etc.  But for the industry as a whole that is definitely the wrong direction. 

Edit: It's not just that the average guy prefers simplicity, it's also that more complexity increases the skill gap, which has the downstream effect of driving people out of the hobby faster.  Same thing with randomness, obviously the game should not be overwhelmingly random - everyone wants to feel like it's a test of skill - but there needs to be a big enough element of randomness that the better players don't beat the weaker players so consistently that the weaker players just give up. 

Edited by Ignoratio Elenchi
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

I think overall we just mostly disagree that what is good for the the hobby(and games in general) is randomness. I mean, there are a lot of people that play the power-ball and roulette. This is true. Those are probably the same people that feel they want dumbed-down rules if they have any interest in fantasy football. I don't think a lack of randomness is what made poker less fun(if I recall I think it was some combination of a crack-down on illegal online casinos and the online casinos weren't all above board in the first place which was just SHOCKING). I don't think people are drawn to games of skill because they want more randomness. People that want randomness pull on the lever of a slot machine. If randomness is the goal then I think the best idea would be creating a league where all you had was PK's. Or better yet, draw a football on one side of a coin and a helmet on the other and just flip the coin to see who wins. 

Agreed. This is an interesting thread and an interesting discussion. I appreciate that you can consider a take that’s radically different than your own so dispassionately.

In my opinion you’re thinking about the kind of game you’d personally like to play and you’re not thinking like, for example, a casino operator that wants to generate the most action and grow the game to its maximum potential. Nobody goes into playing a gambling game of skill for the randomness but this isn’t to say that randomness isn’t important. Gambling skill games have delicate ecosystems where, if they are designed correctly, the good players don’t always win but they win often enough to grind out long term profits (and stay loyal) and the bad players win just often enough through randomness that they never fully appreciate their disadvantage in the game and they keep chasing their last win. This is the part of the equation that I think you’re glossing over. I have leagues I’ve been in for 20+ years where some of the owners are complete sitting ducks but once in a blue moon they still win and that’s really important. I NEVER want those owners to quit because they play each year at a significant financial disadvantage.

There are many factors that have constricted poker but one that should not be underestimated is good players using powerful Head’s Up Displays to target and destroy the recreational players quickly. If we manipulate the rules of FF too much and get greedy with our edges it can lead to the same effect and that’s what I worry about

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Ignoratio Elenchi said:

It's not just that the average guy prefers simplicity, it's also that more complexity increases the skill gap, which has the downstream effect of driving people out of the hobby faster.  Same thing with randomness, obviously the game should not be overwhelmingly random - everyone wants to feel like it's a test of skill - but there needs to be a big enough element of randomness that the better players don't beat the weaker players so consistently that the weaker players just give up. 

Right, then you end up like the NBA :lmao:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For the people making the complexity vs simplicity argument, wouldn't it make more sense to JUST score TD's, INT's, and 1st downs if you are trying to watch a game and track all the scoring in your head? I mean does it really make any sense that you think the guy you are watching had 74 yards, and on the last play you THINK he just got 8 yards(although the official scorer may have given him 9 yards but you're not quite sure) so that means my score is now either......

Wouldn't it just be more simple(if that's the end goal) to say, "Hey, my player just got a 1st down. That's one point for me!". 

All this is assuming of course that the people that are into following fantasy football don't look at a phone/tablet/computer screen during a football game. If fantasy football players are that casual about the hobby my hunch is they simply check the next day what their fantasy score is and don't try to keep score while casually watching a game. They just simply root for their players to play well.... full stop. In which case it doesn't make any difference how complicated the scoring is because when their players make a good play their fantasy team does better. A more accurate scoring system would reflect that general sentiment.

I guess I feel like I'm spinning scenarios for a group of people that doesn't exist. They are casual fantasy football players that need the scoring simple enough that they can keep it all in their head as they watch a game..... oh, and they go for 3+ hours without looking at their phone(which would simply tell them their fantasy score no matter how complicated the scoring system was). And they are generally poor at playing fantasy football so their only hope of winning is that enough randomness is built into the game that they have some hope of winning. That's the group that we are talking about?

It feels more like this is some creation made up by someone that is really saying,"Well, I've always(at least for the past 20+ year) just gotten 1 point for every 10 yards so that's the way it SHOULD be!". That's at least a more honest argument. Don't get me wrong, it's also still a bad argument but at least it's more honest.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Ignoratio Elenchi said:

Every part of this is correct.  I'm a strong believer that whatever rules you and your leaguemates want to use are fine, there's no "right" or "wrong" way to play, it's just whatever you and 11 of your friends agree to.  Most of us here are more hardcore than 99% of fantasy football players, and probably prefer rules that are more complex, more reflective of real value, provide more skill edge, etc.  But for the industry as a whole that is definitely the wrong direction. 

If we are trying to take the "skill" out of fantasy football, presumably for the good of the industry as a whole, shouldn't we just remove yardage and go straight to TD scoring? That certainly is no my wish but people seem to be making that argument.

I feel like a lot of people are trying to ride both sides of the fence here. The whole reason yardage and receptions are over-represented in fantasy football right now is because the folks with the slide rules can more accurately predict yardage/receptions than they can TD's. Why is that "edge" good for the hobby?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/17/2018 at 9:05 AM, BoltBacker said:

Shouldn't a player that gets a TD in two carries get more points than a player that gets a TD in 25 carries? 

 

Absolutely NOT. I played in a TD only (almost, 100 rushing or 300 passing also netted 6) league once. I still remember watching MIke friggin Alstott consistently outscore stud RB's and easily finish as a top 10 or so RB. WR's were next to worthless outside of a couple of studs.

Every scoring system proposed has it's pluses and minuses, and there is no perfect one. That said, I do tend to agree that most leagues could do a better job of creating more value for the most important position in football (the QBs), and I see no good reason to keep PKs in fantasy other than work/beer leagues where high amounts of luck are just fine.

Edited by renesauz

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

If we are trying to take the "skill" out of fantasy football, presumably for the good of the industry as a whole, shouldn't we just remove yardage and go straight to TD scoring? That certainly is no my wish but people seem to be making that argument.

I feel like a lot of people are trying to ride both sides of the fence here. The whole reason yardage and receptions are over-represented in fantasy football right now is because the folks with the slide rules can more accurately predict yardage/receptions than they can TD's. Why is that "edge" good for the hobby?

I guess without drilling into the details of which particular stat categories you want to count, etc., the larger point is, why do you seem so convinced that there's something wrong with the existing scoring systems that the industry has adopted?  Again, I love the fact that the format is flexible enough that any 10-12 people can form a league and use any rules they want - neither of my two main leagues use cookie-cutter scoring and rosters - but over the years the industry has landed on a roughly uniform set of rules that is working well enough that it's a multibillion dollar industry with ~60 million players.  The balance of skill and randomness, of complexity and simplicity, is pretty good right now and it has a tremendous amount of inertia.  By all means tailor your league rules however you want but let's also not pretend that a ton of work hasn't actually gone into creating fantasy products that are appealing to the widest number of people.  Most people like things the way they are set up currently, well enough to keep coming back year after year and spending billions of dollars on the hobby.  You can argue they're "wrong" all you want I suppose.  :shrug: 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Ignoratio Elenchi said:

I guess without drilling into the details of which particular stat categories you want to count, etc., the larger point is, why do you seem so convinced that there's something wrong with the existing scoring systems that the industry has adopted?  

I think any scoring system that makes Eli's 2017 performance from last season a top 50 player, and Jay Cutler in 2017 a top 100 is just plain silly.

But it doesn't stop there. Because those player are ranked so high what it actually does is lower the value of the best and most important players in the game like Tom Brady and Carson Wentz. I would say that those are two of the top 5 most valuable players in the game of football right now. Where do they get drafted in fantasy football? Somewhere in the 35th to 50th pick range?

It just seems to me like the system is broken and nobody is willing to admit that it's broken.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, renesauz said:

Absolutely NOT. I played in a TD only (almost, 100 rushing or 300 passing also netted 6) league once. I still remember watching MIke friggin Alstott consistently outscore stud RB's and easily finish as a top 10 or so RB. WR's were next to worthless outside of a couple of studs.

Well, in my scenario I was comparing Alstott to a RB that was getting the exact same number of TD's as Alstott.

If the "stud" RB's weren't picking up first downs to go with their heavier work loads...... I guess we just have different definitions of what a stud RB actually is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Evolving? Devolving? Maybe, maybe not. What we know is that it is involving. It's way more involving than it used to be. Year round podcats, dozens of quality apps and pay for sites and draft kits and scoring systems, etc. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

I think any scoring system that makes Eli's 2017 performance from last season a top 50 player, and Jay Cutler in 2017 a top 100 is just plain silly.

But it doesn't stop there. Because those player are ranked so high what it actually does is lower the value of the best and most important players in the game like Tom Brady and Carson Wentz. I would say that those are two of the top 5 most valuable players in the game of football right now. Where do they get drafted in fantasy football? Somewhere in the 35th to 50th pick range?

It just seems to me like the system is broken and nobody is willing to admit that it's broken.

I think any scoring system that makes the letter Q ten times more valuable than the letter E is just plain silly, and yet Scrabble is a wildly successful game.  Knights on horseback don't walk exclusively in L-shapes, and Atlantic City real estate prices have changed a lot in the last 80 years.  And nobody cares because what makes a good game is not how closely it mimics real life.  Most games would almost certainly be made much worse if we tried to make them more "real."

Fantasy football is also a wildly successful game, and you still haven't demonstrated that there's anything actually broken with it.  It seems to be working just fine.  Of course, one of the great features of fantasy football is that you can start a league using any kind of scoring/rosters you want, so if you prefer leagues that try really hard to more accurately reflect some different measure of "real value," go for it!  It's a robust and flexible game that allows for a ton of variety and creativity.  The only thing here that doesn't make a lot of sense is why you seem to think your personal preferences should be the norm for the tens of millions of other fantasy football players on earth.  There's no problem to fix.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

I think any scoring system that makes Eli's 2017 performance from last season a top 50 player, and Jay Cutler in 2017 a top 100 is just plain silly.

But it doesn't stop there. Because those player are ranked so high what it actually does is lower the value of the best and most important players in the game like Tom Brady and Carson Wentz. I would say that those are two of the top 5 most valuable players in the game of football right now. Where do they get drafted in fantasy football? Somewhere in the 35th to 50th pick range?

It just seems to me like the system is broken and nobody is willing to admit that it's broken.

 

QBs are undervalued in most "vanilla" scoring system - so what?  As Iggy pointed out, FF doesn't have to mimic real life to be fun. 

For any scoring system/roster configuration combinations there are different strategies and all are valid.  In a start 1QB league you should probably wait on QBs.  In start 2QB and super flex you should probably grab QBs early and often.  If your scoring were implemented you should probably grab the top 4 to 6 QBs and then wait.  Changing the scoring system only changes the draft strategy, it doesn't necessarily make the game better or more enjoyable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/26/2018 at 7:45 AM, Ignoratio Elenchi said:

The only thing here that doesn't make a lot of sense is why you seem to think your personal preferences should be the norm for the tens of millions of other fantasy football players on earth.  There's no problem to fix.

I don't think tens of millions of fantasy football players on earth should make my personal preferences the norm. I just wish there was at least a small fraction that was open to the flexibility, creativity, and variety that you describe.

Joe mentioned in another thread that FF participation is down, and imo the reason it's down is because it's gotten stale. Part of the reason it's gotten stale to me is the inefficiency in scoring systems and 99% of drafts seem like formulaic exercises in ADP regurgitation despite all the "creativity and variety" you mention. It'll take another 5+ years until the industry does a dramatic shift toward the obvious like half-ppr. What do you think, 10 years until 3rd-round-reversal finally becomes the norm? You say that there is no problem to fix but can you honestly say that the vast majority of fantasy football consists of snake drafts that we all know is clearly BROKEN when compared to better alternatives? If that's not a very fixable problem I guess I don't know what is.

It just seems to me so many in the hobby are stuck with, "You don't get it. MY guy just caught a pass for 10 yards. That's a third of a TD. Why can't you see that?" With all the talk about the importance of advanced metrics in the sport and the hobby it's just kind of amazing that almost nobody thinks it should be shaping the hobby in some way. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

I don't think tens of millions of fantasy football players on earth should make my personal preferences the norm. I just wish there was at least a small fraction that was open to the flexibility, creativity, and variety that you describe.

There is.  Not sure how you could possibly conclude otherwise.

3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

Joe mentioned in another thread that FF participation is down

Going to need a link to a source showing FF participation is down.  Here's one showing that it isn't.

3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

It'll take another 5+ years until the industry does a dramatic shift toward the obvious like half-ppr.

There's nothing obviously better about half-PPR than other common scoring systems, that's the point people keep telling you and you keep missing. 

3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

What do you think, 10 years until 3rd-round-reversal finally becomes the norm?

I am fairly confident for a variety of reasons that 3rd round reversal will never become the norm. 

3 hours ago, BoltBacker said:

we all know is clearly BROKEN

Keep shouting into the void.  :thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/27/2018 at 0:14 PM, Ignoratio Elenchi said:

There is.  Not sure how you could possibly conclude otherwise.

Going to need a link to a source showing FF participation is down.  Here's one showing that it isn't.

There's nothing obviously better about half-PPR than other common scoring systems, that's the point people keep telling you and you keep missing.

I am fairly confident for a variety of reasons that 3rd round reversal will never become the norm. 

Keep shouting into the void.  :thumbsup:

By trying to get 9 other people to join a league with a scoring format that doesn't fall into 3 vanilla formats that dominate 99% of the industry. It used to take about a week to fill a fantasy league around here. Now it takes a month.

As I mentioned, I was going by a comment made by Joe. I think he may have been referring to non-daily FF being down. Based on how difficult it is to fill a league it seems that way but I have no links. Based on your link how many people played fantasy football in 2017?

You're right, there is nothing better about any of these out-dated scoring systems that are obviously worse..... unless you think it's absurd that anyone can argue the case that Eli Manning was a top-50 offensive player last year. Or that Jay Cutler was a top-100 player. If you think those sound spot on then those scoring systems are working perfectly and you can continue to think that as far as I'm concerned.

Ok.

You're welcome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.