Associated Fantasy’s Pro Bowl Tournament is designed to honor the best teams in the Association each fantasy season just as NFL players are honored with Pro Bowl appearances, but it’s also designed to test those teams and fantasy managers with the toughest, most challenging ff tournament around, all to see just who the best of the best is in all of the Association
Just making it into the tournament is a competition. Between 15-20 teams are nominated near the end of each season from all of the teams playing in the Association (currently 106), and those nominees are then voted on by all 106 Association teams with the Top 6 receiving invitations to the Pro Bowl Tournament, which is held the following season. The rest of the nominees become Alternates, ranked in the order of the votes they received, to take the place of any honorees that decline the invitation. Those team managers that are invited and accept the honor, must sign up as an AF Registered Coach – an easy process that’s free and only takes about 5 minutes, and comes with lots of perks – and then be prepared for the $50 entry fee, payable during next year’s pre-season. Then, they might want to spend the offseason reading the Tournament Rules and preparing a game plan, because the Tournament is designed to test every ounce of their fantasy coaching skills…all against 5 other coaches who are also the best around.
The AF Pro Bowl Tournament is a 6 team tournament using AF Classic roster settings and AF Century scoring settings. The Starting Roster is 1 QB, 1 RB, 2 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB/WR/TE FLEX, 1 K, 1 TEAM DEF, and 3 IDP, and position minimum/maximums are set so that the bench positions will mirror the starting positions, a setting that becomes very important in the actual play of the tournament. The scoring settings are the most challenging around, awarding only single points, and awarding them very stingily. Score a touchdown? 1 point. 50 yards rushing? 1 point. 10+ tackles? 1 point. Basically, if your player had a significant impact on the field, he’ll pick up a couple of points for you; if he had a really outstanding day, you might clean up with 4 or 5 points, but if he made no really significant contribution to the game on the field, he won’t be making any contributions on the fantasy scoreboard either. With only 6 teams competing, and with such thin starting line-ups and extremely low scoring, success becomes all the more based on personnel decisions instead of just becoming a stats arms race. Each team’s player personnel decisions will be tested from the very start with the Tournament’s double draft – the first an auction draft, and the second a traditional snake draft, but teams must choose wisely, as once they build their teams, they’ll have only 20 add/drop transactions available to them for the whole season.
The 6 Pro Bowl teams play a 15 week regular season in which each team will face every other team 3 times each in head to head battle for wins and losses in the standings. But the AF Pro Bowl Tournament doesn’t stop there, where would the fun be in that? To be named the Best in the Association, teams will have to not only beat their opponent, they’ll have to beat the league, the experts, and themselves as well. Their weekly head to head matches will give teams a chance to beat their opponents, building up a total of 15 wins, losses, or ties. Their weekly score will be compared to the running average of league scores, and teams will try to beat the league average each week, building up another total of 15 wins, losses, or ties in the scoring category. Tournament teams will also be entered into a Pick-‘Em group where they’ll try to predict NFL games better than the experts, each week building up a third set of 15 wins, losses, or ties for their prognostication skills. And finally, teams must beat themselves by setting the best possible line-up, with their starters getting either a win, loss, or tie each week against their bench score. The four categories combine to form the Tournament’s Aggregate Standings, a win/loss/tie record with a total of 60 through the 15 week Regular Season. With the ability to gain as many as 4 wins per week – or 4 losses – teams will be able to cover lots of ground on the standings board, either distancing themselves from the pack slow and steady, or shooting up the field on a hot streak.
The pair of tournament teams that find themselves at the top of the Aggregate Standings board at the end of Week 15, will face off head to head in the Pro Bowl Championship. For the Championship, the ADD/Drop limits get removed, along with the starter vs bench competition, and the two contenders are simply head to head in a Week 16-17, two week cumulative points game. But to make it just a little more interesting, a QB 2 position, 2 additional Offensive Flex positions, and 1 more IDP position are added to the starting line-up. The teams will need that added scoring boost because they continue to make their Pick-‘Em game picks in both weeks of the Championship, and the correct picks are now worth 1 point each on the scoreboard. To the victor goes the spoils, and the Pro Bowl Tournament Champion wins a $200 payout and honor of being named the absolute best of the best of the rest. The loser walks away with $100 in consolation prize money and the nagging knowledge of being second best.