If all goes according to plan, the National Football League’s (NFL) season will begin on Sept. 10. In preparation for the first kickoff, DraftKings is giving fantasy sports players more than a month’s notice to get involved in its new season-long NFL contest — Best Ball.
The contest represents the daily fantasy sports giant’s first venture into season-long fantasy competitions. However, Best Ball is just one of many NFL-related offerings available to Tennessee daily fantasy sports players on DraftKings.
Best Ball adds familiar fantasy football format
Best Ball is an homage of sorts to traditional, season-long fantasy football leagues that predated daily fantasy.
In a press release announcing Best Ball, DraftKings co-founder Paul Liberman described the game as “an exciting new feature within our fantasy product that our customers have asked for.”
DraftKings has made Best Ball an app-only game. That is, it cannot be played on their web-based browser, but only on a mobile device.
Playing either head-to-head or in 12-team “leagues,” participants draft a lineup of players and then stick with that squad for whatever period the game runs (from a single day up to the entire season).
Ready, set, snake draft! No post-draft roster moves required
The draft begins when the contest fills, at which point the draft order is randomly determined.
Picks are then made using the “snake draft” format whereby the order is reversed each round. Each NFL player can only be selected once. Participants can play either a “fast” or “slow” draft (affecting the time allotted to make picks). They can also turn on notifications, too, to receive alerts when it is their turn to select a player.
Participants can manually pick players when their turn comes, or they can edit the predraft rankings and queue up the players they wish to select. In fact, to be prize-eligible, participants must manually edit the rankings or pick a player.
There are no drops, adds or waivers as in other season-long fantasy leagues. Nor is there any need to decide each week who to start or who to bench. The top scoring players automatically start for each team.
There are a variety of buy-ins available, including a marquee Best Ball tournament with a $20 buy-in, $1 million first-place prize, and $3 million in total prizes.
Other NFL fantasy options from DraftKings
As the official fantasy partner of the NFL, DraftKings also announced a couple of other new NFL-related contests to highlight week one of the NFL season.
DraftKings will be running two different Fantasy Football Millionaire contests, one Thursday, Sept. 10 and the other Sunday, Sept. 13. That’s in addition to DraftKings’ already loaded week one schedule of contests.
The Thursday contest has a $10 entry fee, a $1 million first-place prize, and $2.5 million in total prizes. New sign-ups can receive a free entry by making an initial deposit of at least $5.
The Sunday contest costs $5 to play, also features a $1 million first-place prize, and has $5 million in total prizes. For this one, both new and existing users can earn a free entry by making a deposit of at least $5.
New users can get free entries into both Fantasy Football Millionaire contests at once by depositing before the Sept. 10 game.
Tennesseans still await first online sportsbook to go live
The DraftKings Sportsbook is busy readying for the NFL season as well. Among the highlighted offerings is another season-long game, a Survivor Pool featuring a $1 million top prize.
With online-only sports betting now legal in the Volunteer State, Tennesseans wait to see if DraftKings or any other online sportsbooks will manage to go live in time for the NFL season.
At present, four vendors have been approved by the Tennessee Education Lottery. However, no operators have been listed as approved as yet on the TEL website.