A quick guide to setting up the perfect dynasty league (2024)

You’ve caught the dynasty bug and now you’re ready to step up your game by becoming the Commissioner of a Dynasty League.

Before taking that leap, there are a number of primary elements you need to consider. Dynasty leagues take a different level of care and feeding than redraft and, if you don’t give enough forethought to a few key areas, you risk the potential of having a poor experience, GM dissatisfaction or, worse, excessive team abandonment.


Let’s look at just a few of the most important factors to consider.

League Dues

While many people like high stakes leagues, there’s an inherent issue. Winning teams have a catalyst to keep paying, but losing teams may quickly abandon a league if they feel they cannot be competitive. The higher the stakes, the higher your abandonment will be. Balance the dues with the payout structure.

My preference: $100 annual dues strikes the balance of material returns for good performance while not being too costly such that abandonment becomes a big issue.

Number of Teams

The number of teams is important in that it helps spread assets (players) across teams and sets the stage for competition. Too many teams and it’s harder to win and poor teams will have a more difficult time improving their rosters. Too few teams and rosters will be loaded with talent, making it more difficult to gain a roster advantage. The number of teams also impacts your divisional configuration.

My Preference: 12 teams. It allows for three divisions of four teams with league winners making the playoffs in addition to three wildcard teams.

GM Selection

I can’t stress enough the importance of GM selection. Knowing your GMs, their level of experience and their willingness to commit to the league for the long term will make your job a commissioner much more enjoyable. Choosing random GMs for a dynasty league presents a minefield of potential issues. League drama, abandonment, competition, bullying and payment issues are just a few looming possibilities you can expect if you don’t know your GMs.

My Preference: Stick to people you know, friends of those people or those who are referred by a trusted source.

League Host

Many sites now offer dynasty league services. Choosing the right site, with the best options for the experience you desire, is an important consideration. Some sites excel in customizability but with less intuitive interfaces or poor mobile integration, while others are just the opposite. Spend some time researching options and be sure to ask your GMs and dynasty community what they prefer.


My Preference: I still prefer MyFantasyLeague.com. They don’t have the fancy mobile interface and there is a learning curve, but the customizability can’t be beat.

Roster Size

Too many new commissioners don’t give this topic enough attention. If the goal of your league is to allow GMs to build deep teams, increase trading and provide a GM-like experience, consider allowing deeper rosters. My belief has always been that dynasty leagues should provide for no less than 300 rostered players. That’s 25 players per team in a 12-team league. Any less and the waiver wire may be talent rich, reducing potential trading. For myself, the more the better.

My Preference: 25 regular season roster spots at a minimum.

Starting Roster

The starting roster requirement is an important factor as it will influence the start-up draft strategy for coaches. Primarily, this will involve determining the required number of starting running backs, receivers and available Flex spots available.

My Preference: I favor (1) RB, (2) WR, (1) TE and (2) Flex but this may be impacted by league format options. Like many others, SuperFlex is becoming a favorite format.

League Format & Scoring

Years ago, this wasn’t an issue as format and scoring was largely standardized. But, now, options abound as do the preferences of dynasty players. Before setting up your league, know the following:

PPR – Point Per Reception (PPR) scoring standardly awards players 0, .5 or 1.0 points for each reception. Doing so improves the performance of wide receivers while zero PPR, also called “standard” scoring, prioritizes running backs.

TEP – Tight End Premium (TEP) scoring awards extra points to tight ends for each reception, standardly an additional .5 for a total of 1.5 per reception.

SuperFlex – The SuperFlex format allows for a second quarterback, typically a high producing position, to be started in a flex position of a starting lineup. This format is widely gaining popularity and is important to understand prior to inviting GMs and running the start-up draft.


IDP – Individual Defense Player (IDP) leagues require starting rosters to contain defensive players. This will increase the roster size of your league. IDP leagues continue to gain in popularity and the number of defensive players, and their scoring, widely vary.

Trade Deadline – Always a hotly debated topic, the trade deadline question must be considered. If set too early, teams may not have the ability to augment their rosters due to injury or positional deficits. Set too late and you allow a “player dump” by uncompetitive teams which could unfairly swing the power curve late in the season. My belief is that the trade deadline should be no later than week 10. I believe trades need to occur when most teams are still in competition for the playoffs.

Playoffs – How many teams make the playoffs and what is the format? Limit the number of teams making the playoffs to no more than 50% with the best two teams receiving a bye in the first week. Fantasy scoring can be extremely variable and top teams should be rewarded for their performances during the season. Reduce the chance of bad beats eliminating a top team early by offering bye weeks. Head-to-head playoffs remain the standard but multiple week pool-play formats are gaining popularity and are fun for all involved.

Alternative Playoffs – Keeping your players engaged is the name of the game. For those out of the playoff money, consider alternative playoffs to give everyone something to play for. A “toilet bowl” for the top-overall rookie draft selection and, perhaps, even head-to-head games for other draft selections will go a long way to make sure it’s fun for all involved, even those out of the money


I find the dynasty format to be the most immersive and engaging fantasy format without question. But being a commissioner of your own league requires careful planning and forethought toward creating a fun and rewarding experience for all GMs.

I hope these tips will give you the start you need to hit the ground running.

A quick guide to setting up the perfect dynasty league (1)A quick guide to setting up the perfect dynasty league (2)

Jeff Haverlack is one of the founders (2006) and owners of DynastyLeagueFootball.com (DLF) and has been an avid player of fantasy football from the 1990s. While much of his time is spent on the business of fantasy sports including writing content for DLF and other websites, Jeff is also passionate about NFL-related rookie and collegiate player scouting and development. In his spare time he likes to involve himself in photography, guitar, hiking/exploration, financial planning and the wine industry. Follow Jeff on Twitter @DLF_Jeff

A quick guide to setting up the perfect dynasty league (2024)


Who should you draft first in a dynasty league? ›

In Superflex Dynasty leagues, prioritize drafting a top QB early to establish a strong foundation for your team. However, resist the urge to immediately secure a second QB. This could lead you to miss out on valuable players at other positions.

What is the best roster size for dynasty league? ›

Roster Size

My belief has always been that dynasty leagues should provide for no less than 300 rostered players. That's 25 players per team in a 12-team league. Any less and the waiver wire may be talent rich, reducing potential trading. For myself, the more the better.

What is the best website to start a dynasty league? ›

The Sleeper platform's customizable options are extensive. They cover everything from scoring and playoff settings to trade blocks and draft settings. This level of customization, combined with the platform's accessibility and user-friendly mobile interface, makes Sleeper our top choice for dynasty league owners.

How do I improve my dynasty league? ›

The prevailing strategy when starting a new dynasty league is to build around wide receivers. These players have longer shelf lives and will be productive players longer than running backs. The idea is you stack up on wide receivers early in your dynasty tenure.

Who to draft in 2024 dynasty? ›

Dynasty Rookie Rankings 2024 - Fantasy Football
11Marvin Harrison Jr. WR ARI
22Malik Nabers WR NYG
33Rome Odunze WR CHI
44Jonathon Brooks RB CAR
24 more rows
5 days ago

Who to keep dynasty football? ›

Fantasy Football Dynasty Rankings (2024)
  • Justin Jefferson. MIN. WR. ...
  • CeeDee Lamb. DAL. WR. ...
  • Ja'Marr Chase. CIN. WR. ...
  • Bijan Robinson. ATL. RB. ...
  • Breece Hall. NYJ. RB. ...
  • Christian McCaffrey. SF. RB. ...
  • Amon-Ra St. Brown. DET. WR. ...
  • Jahmyr Gibbs. DET. RB.

How many QBs should I have in dynasty? ›

Quarterback Strategy: 1QB Dynasty Startup Leagues

It depends on roster size. With rosters of 30 or more players, it's fine to carry three QBs, especially if you don't have a star. You'll have more flexibility to play matchups with your subpremium quarterbacks. Don't feel compelled to draft more than two, however.

How many bench spots should a dynasty league have? ›

Regarding roster size, 28 is a solid number to start a league with ten starters and 18 bench spots, plus the four taxi squad spots. You could always twerk the size if you want more activity on waivers. Within the starters, a standard should be QB, RB, RB, WR, WR, WR, TE, 2 Flex, and SuperFlex.

What is the best number of people for a dynasty league? ›

If you're new to fantasy football, the best thing you can do to learn is to play. Don't worry about having the perfect league. Learn the game. Once you're enough of a veteran, if you truly want a competitive experience that rewards skill to the extent this game can, 12 teams are the perfect amount.

Who gives the best fantasy football advice? ›

Draft Sharks gives the best fantasy football advice based on their accuracy awards. Jared Smola recently claimed the title of most accurate fantasy football analyst by winning Fantasy Pros' Multi-Year Projection Accuracy Award.

How many keepers should you have in a dynasty league? ›

There's no hard rule on how many keepers you must use. As I mentioned above, my first keeper league had us keep up to three. I'm also in a keeper league where we keep up to six. Another up to five.

Who are the most accurate fantasy football experts? ›

2023 Season to Date Accuracy Rankings
RankExpert NameTE
1Sean Koerner - The Action Network9
2Elisha Twerski - USA Today17
3Joe Bond - Fantasy Six Pack37
4Patrick Thorman - Establish the Run33
46 more rows

What to know for a dynasty league? ›

Dynasty leagues typically allow trading year round. That means you can take advantage of changing player values during the season and key points of the offseason, such as free agency and the NFL Draft. Dynasty leagues allow owners to trade draft picks for future-year rookie drafts.

How to build your dynasty team? ›

Your team should have some veterans to trade and some younger guys to keep. The main point here is that you need to try to project whether or not a given player will still be able to help you to a championship in a few seasons. If the answer is yes, keep the player. If the answer is no, trade him.

How to do a dynasty startup draft? ›

Draft Young in Dynasty Startups

The idea is to build a team that will dominate in a few years once these young players hit their prime. In this strategy, you might exclusively draft first- and second-year players. Maybe you add third-year players to your draft pool, but make sure you stick to the plan.

When should you start a dynasty fantasy football league? ›

Second, there are two schools of thought on when your startup should take place. Some dynasty leagues will have their startup draft early in the offseason, perhaps even before the NFL Draft. Others will schedule it during the normal draft season in late August/early September. I prefer to draft as late as possible.

Do you draft every year in a dynasty league? ›

Your dynasty league will hold a rookie draft each offseason, usually just after the NFL Draft.

Who should I keep in my fantasy league? ›

2024 fantasy football rankings & depth charts
  • Justin Jefferson, Min (WR1)
  • Bijan Robinson, Atl (RB1)
  • Ja'Marr Chase, Cin (WR2)
  • Breece Hall, NYJ (RB2)
  • A.J. Brown, Phi (WR3)
  • Christian McCaffrey, SF (RB3)
  • CeeDee Lamb, Dal (WR4)
  • Garrett Wilson, NYJ (WR5)
Sep 1, 2023

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