The Advantages Of Fractional Points In Fantasy Football

Advantages of fractional points in fantasy football
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One of the decisions your league’s commissioner has to make when setting up the league’s scoring system is whether to use fractional points or not. This is also called fractional scoring and it’s something that your league should consider using.

What Are Fractional Points?

Using fractional points awards your players partial fantasy points for every yard.  Even yardage less than the scoring threshold counts.  Most leagues award 1 fantasy point for every 10 rushing yards.  If your running back rushes for 69 yards, he would score 6.9 points with fractional scoring versus 6 points using standard scoring.

Fractional scoring typically only applies to the yardage scoring categories. These are rushing, receiving, passing and return yards. 

Why Should My League Use Fractional Points?

There are two key advantages to consider when you decide whether to use fractional points or not for your league.

1. Maximize Scoring

Every fantasy coach wants to get the most points out of their players. But your RB that rushed for 119 yards gets the same 11 points under standard scoring as your opponent’s RB that rushed for 110 yards.

Fractional scoring provides an easy and legitimate way to increase scoring by valuing every yard gained instead of a block of 10 or 20 yards.  In the situation above, your 119 yard rusher would now score 11.90 points versus your opponent’s RB getting 11.00 points.

Looking across your team, assume that your QB, 2RBs, 2WRs, Flex and TE positions each rush or receive for a total yardage ending in 5.  That’s enough extra yardage to get .5 fractional points each (using 1 point per 10 yards).  Your team would earn an additional 3.5 fantasy points (7 players * .5 points) in that case.  That could be enough to turn a close game into a victory for you.

Those fractional points are even more valuable if you’re starting a 5th string player due to injury or bye. Your sub player probably won’t score much and you want to squeeze every last drop of points out of him.

2. Reduce The Chance Of A Tie

Everyone wants to win. No one wants their game to end in a tie. While better than a loss, a tie seems wrong in fantasy football.  Ties are really aggravating when your team gained more total yardage than your opponent’s did.

Using fractional scoring greatly reduces the odds of a tie because there are more potential score values compared to only using whole numbers. Instead of a 95-95 final score, you might get a victory with a 97.2 – 96.9 score from the same player stats.

It’s still possible for a game to end in a tie but much less likely. I haven’t seen it happen in over ten years using fractional points.

Any Downside To Fractional Points?

Only that your opponent will also score partial points for each yard.  This method of scoring won’t guarantee you (or anyone) a victory.  Draft players that fight for every yard and you’ll be fine.

How To Enable Fractional Scoring

The setting is called Fractional Points in Yahoo’s fantasy football games. Setting it to “Yes” enables fractional scoring and “No” disables it.  Check your fantasy website provider’s rules to determine how to set it for your league.

Note that your site may also allow you to specify fractional point values for non-yardage categories including completions, receptions or tackles for loss.  The fractional points setting doesn’t affect these categories.  An example of that would be awarding .5 points per reception.

Final Thoughts On Fractional Points

Before switching to fractional scoring I’d get annoyed when my RBs and WRs gained for just less than the next 10 yard scoring threshold but didn’t get credit for it. Now I enjoy watching the games and stat updates more knowing that every yard counts towards my team’s score.  Switch your league to using fractional points and you will, too.

Remember that the league commissioner should only make scoring rule changes before the draft.  If you’re considering switching your league to use fractional scoring, do it before then.

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