The line between fantasy and reality is being blurred by the rapidly-growing Daily Fantasy Sports market, offering fans a chance to not only build the team of their dreams and test their football knowledge but earn big money by playing fantasy sports against other passionate pigskin aficionados. In fact, fantasy footballers are more like sports handicappers than ever before.
Fantasy sports are nothing new to the mainstream, stemming from those hallowed Rotisserie League days in the 1980s and booming in popularity at the turn of the century. Much like sports betting, fantasy football gets fans to not just tune into their favorite NFL teams each Sunday but also watch games involving different players on their fantasy rosters.
And, again like sports betting, managing your fantasy team – daily or season-long – takes a keen eye to spot value in certain matchups that may not be visible to the average fan. Fantasy football is one of the most underrated places to find sports betting tips, and vice versa.
For example, sports handicappers may look to play the Under in a contest in which a team’s passing game is facing a stingy secondary that ranks among the top pass defenses in the NFL, knowing that the offense won’t be able to pick up big gains and will likely have to run the ball more than usual – keeping the gains short and the clock ticking.
The fantasy football player sees this matchup in a similar light, spotting added value in the offense’s running back, knowing the team won’t be passing as much and giving the rusher extra carries to try and move the chains while taking pressure off the receivers and forcing the defense to loosen up on the pass coverage.
One of the biggest trends in fantasy football in recent years is the shift away from the rushing game, with most teams using a multi-back run attack, and the boom in passing. Since defenses are all but handcuffed when defending receivers, more importance is being put on quarterbacks and wideouts – but also running backs who can make plays after the catch. Finding a hybrid running back, that can run the ball and also make catches, is a smart way to win your weekly or daily fantasy football matchup.