REGULAR SEASON & PLAYOFFS (Free Standard Leagues)

Bragging rights are what the game is all about. If your team has made the playoffs, then you are one step closer to attaining the ultimate prize! But first, a few notes on the 2009 Fantasy Football regular season and schedule.

LIVE SCORING (all season long!)
ESPN Fantasy Football provides Live-Scoring, free-of-charge, all season long. The live-scoring is displayed from your standings and Clubhouse pages.

It's possible that over the course of the season some scoring plays and player statistics are modified, for example a running back's actual yardage may be adjusted post-game. In most cases these adjustments will be made within 24-hours. The official deadline for scoring corrections will be the following Saturday from the end of a game. Scoring changes that occur beyond the following Saturday will not be reflected. For example, a change to a Monday Night Football game player statistic may be changed as late as the coming up Saturday. Any changes entered in the system will automatically reflect in both your Box Score and Standings pages.

ESPN has set thirteen (13) weeks in the regular season for Free-Standard and Prize-Eligible Leagues. This is a fixed setting and thus cannot be altered. If you wish to play in a league which offers flexible regular season and playoff schedules, you must create or join a Custom league.


Your league has battled it out throughout the regular season and you're now ready to see who can win when it really matters - in the Playoffs! This page details how the playoff system works in ESPN Fantasy Football Leagues.

The fantasy playoffs begin in the 14th week of the NFL regular season. In the Playoffs, the head-to-head matchups are a bit different than the regular season. During the playoffs, the matchups are TWO (2) weeks in duration instead of one. Think of it as each week representing a "half".

Round One of the playoffs takes place during the 14th and 15th weeks of the NFL regular season, while Round Two spans the two final weeks of the NFL regular season (weeks 16 and 17).

In each playoff round, the team with the highest combined point total after two weeks advances. Each team will have the opportunity to change their active roster between each week (essentially "halftime") of playoff play.

All teams continue to compete throughout the playoffs. The two Divisional Champions and two wild card teams (teams with the next best overall records) compete for the League Championship. The wild card teams may come from either division and are selected by their records, with ties resolved according to the tiebreaker categories below. The top-ranked division champ plays the lowest-ranked wild card team i.e. the first place team faces the fourth place team while the second place team faces the third place team.

The remaining teams compete in the consolation bracket. Though out of the running for the championship, this consolation bracket is still competitive since no one wants to finish in last place!

Standard and Prize-Eligible League Playoffs: Playoff Seeding and Tie-Breakers
In the event that two or more teams have identical won-loss records at the conclusion of the Fantasy Football regular season, the following tiebreaking system is employed.

NOTE: In the event that two or more teams have the same winning percentage at the conclusion of the Regular Season, and have played the same number of Head-to-Head games between them (doesn't necessarily mean they have to play tied teams the same number of times), the following tie-breaking system determines the seed:

  • Overall record
  • Overall points scored
  • Head-to-head record *
  • Division record
  • Overall points-against
  • Coin Flip

NOTE: The Overall record is based on winning percentage. Therefore, a team that is 8-5-0 and a team that is 7-4-2 have the same winning percentage, and thus would be considered tied for overall record.

* - In the event that three or more teams have identical win-loss records at the conclusion of the season and have played a different number of head-to-head games between them, head-to-head record is NOT used as a tiebreaker.

Standard League Playoffs: Tiebreaker for Playoff Games
In the event that two teams have the same number of points at the conclusion of their two-week playoff game, the tiebreaker for playoff games is each team's original seeding in the playoffs. In short, the team with the higher seed wins.

Playoff Schedule
Winner's Bracket: In the first round of the playoffs, the division winner with the best win-loss record plays the wild-card team with the worst win-loss record; the other division winner plays the wild-card team with the better win-loss record. In the second round, the winners of the first-round games (see table below) compete for the league championship. Each round of the playoffs spans a two-week period. The 5th through 10th-seeded teams in each league compete in the consolation bracket.

GAME ROUND 1 - WKS 14 & 15
ROUND 2 - WKS 16 & 17
1 1 vs. 4 W1 vs. W2
2 2 vs. 3 L1 vs. L2
GAME ROUND 1 - WKS 14 & 15
ROUND 2 - WKS 16 & 17
1 5 vs. 6 W1 vs. W2
2 7 vs. 8 L1 vs. W3
3 9 vs. 10 L2 vs. L3

Final league standings following the second round of the playoffs

From the Winner's bracket:

  • 1st place - Winner of game 1, round 2
  • 2nd place - Loser of game 1, round 2
  • 3rd place - Winner of game 2, round 2
  • 4th place - Loser of game 2, round 2

From the Consolation bracket:

  • 5th place - Winner of game 1, round 2
  • 6th place - Loser of game 1, round 2
  • 7th place - Winner of game 2, round 2
  • 8th place - Loser of game 2, round 2
  • 9th place - Winner of game 3, round 2
  • 10th place - Loser of game 3, round 2