Keeper League Info

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Great White Shark
Posts: 1787
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010
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My league has never done Keeper's. We always start fresh each year. Where can I get some good info on how to run a keeper league? And how that impacts trades and the like.

Do you like the league's with a salary cap? We haven't done that either. Just curious about all this stuff. Any info would be greatly appreciated.
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Whale Shark
Posts: 1013
Joined: Thu Sep 15, 2005
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I have never done a keeper league...and for the first time this year started an 8 team full dynasty.

Its a 30 man roster....and we will only cut 5 guys each before the 5 round rookie/fa draft.

So far, all 8 people love the set up and I have a feeling it will eventually surpass my big money redraft league as my favorite. The key is having owners that you trust 100% to return each year. Thats why I kept it at 8 teams.

We have added starting spots (2 QB's, a rookie flex, etc) to keep things more interesting.

I dont have a lot of advice yet, because we are honestly learning as we go. All of the off-season deadlines are still to be determined as things play out. But its been fun. We have had draft picks traded, a team "sucking for luck", teams trading future studs for 2 weeks worth of Cedric Benson (playing ARZ and STL during playoffs). Love it so far.
Supreme Megalodon
Posts: 30296
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007
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Here's how I run my Keeper League.

10 owners, 2 divisions -5 teams each. Rosters are set to 32 but you don't have to have 32. This includes IDP - Individual Defensive Players. Decimal scoring - non ppr. I hate ppr. It's just ridicules padding to me.

We start 1 QB 2 RB 3 WR 1 TE 1K 1 DL 1 LB 1 CB/S ( I 'd like to expand the IDP's to 2 each, myself). 13 week regular season.
There's no required number of players by position. Your roster is yours to stack, control anyway you want. You can have 6 QB's if you want. Your roster/team is yours to run as you see fit.

April - Rookie draft - worst to first order based on last years finish. We do something different in this league. We draft a week before the NFL draft. This requires lots of forethought and actually parallels the NFL with the "where are my guys going to land." Lots have called this crazy but we've done it like this since '95, when we started the Keeper League. The league loves it. It has that something extra as you really are evaluating talent and trying to predict the draft. Then, when the draft comes, you're really really into it with the where did my guys land? As I say, we love it.

Ok, so you have a roster of (potentially) 32 guys. When you add your rookie draft these players get added to your roster once MFL has them eligible to be placed on teams/when I renew for the year. I bump the roster count up to however many additional players have been added by the owner with the most draft pics. (trades could bump the number up considerably but I keep the rookie draft to 5 rounds - any rookie not picked up after 5 rounds is then considered a FA pickup in the redraft - more on this in a bit.)

Now comes the trimming of the roster...slightly. Of the 32 on your roster, we keep 18 and throw the rest back into a pool for a redraft. I do this after week three of preseason. This allows for position battles to (mostly) be defined as to help with who to cut/who to keep. On the Monday after week 3 preseason, owners are required to trim their roster to 18. Again, not including the rookie draft picks. On Tuesday I start the FA redraft. Same draft order as the rookie draft worst to first from last years finish. This is also where you can pick up those rookies that weren't picked in the rookie draft. Once the rookies play for a year, they count against your roster for next years cut to 18.

By kick off of game one of the NFL season, your roster is set and then you submit your lineup as what's required to field your team and the process starts up all over again.

We do allow trades of future picks for both rookie and redraft. I keep this to 2 years as three years is a bit much to keep track of. However, My Fantasy League tracks the future rookie picks trades by placing them in the owners trade box for you for you making it easy to track and keep the draft trade order in order. This, plus the Transactions listing from the prior year is a great way to recall all trades and future picks. Over the weekend I thought to email MFL to see if they could generate a draft order sheet based Worst to First plus these trade moves to auto fill the order for the 5 rounds. I haven't seen may know but I don't think they do that. MFL does not track future FA redraft slots/picks. I have to track those manually, which is where the past years Transactions comes in handy as owers include them in the "comments" section of the trade offer. Helps a lot.

I don't do owner votes for trades. No way. Not ever. Not no way, not no how. They suck monkey a$$. Your team is yours to run. No collusion though. If I catch hint of it, you're probably gonna get kicked out as it's not welcome and against the spirit of the game.

We don't play for money. We play for pride and respect of the game. Since we started this, 4 of the original 10 are still in the league. 3 owners have been with the league for 5 or more years. 2 owners have been replaced 3 years ago and 1 owner replaced just last year. If you're an inactive owner, you're out of my league...and I don't mean trades. I mean, you don't show up for drafts or can't be reached or you don't submit a lineup 4 or more times in the year. I'm not having a dead league with a few fighting it out. It's lame and no fun. Run your league with integrity and keep it fair. It's much more fun that way.

As I say, we have a 13 week regular season. 6 teams make the playoffs. I want only 4 to make the playoffs. Our current playoff setup is the division winners gets a bye in week 14 and awaits the divisional challenger. The championship is set in week 16. 6 teams in the playoffs is a lot but it's not a money league and this way the fun is extended for 2 owners. Last year was the first year we had a sub 500 team make the playoffs. I hated that which is why I want only 4 teams in. I shouldn't complain though. In 2007 I went 6-6-1 and squeaked in and ran the table for the win. I wasn't under 500 though.

This is how I run my Keeper League. There's more but that's the gist of it. It's a lot of fun. In fact, I only play in this one league now. Too many teams are just not fun. I find I like just this one league. I like watching my guys pan out or kicking them to the curb if I'm wrong about them or when it's time to move them. Plus, with the redraft and rookie drafts it's like trying to deal with the 53 man roster.

Hope that helps, some.


I heard that the Lark has died on the mountain. If I knew these words were true I would go with a group of men and arms to fetch the Lark's body home.
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Blue Shark
Posts: 443
Joined: Fri Sep 9, 2005
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My oldest league was once a basic keeper league, in which each owner could designate one keeper. We changed to redraft, and everyone has been much happier (tablus rasa, every season). My advice would depend on whether you're planning a simple keeper league (1 or 2), or a full-on dynasty league.

Whatever you run, the primary component needs to be rewarding owners for finding diamonds in the rough. Say a 12th round pick blows up into a top-10 RB...the owner shouldn't lose their 1st round pick to keep that player next season, they should only lose, say, a 9th round pick the following year, then maybe a 6th round the year after, etc. One league I saw allowed one keeper in exchange for a first round pick, and one "sleeper" like that, and they seemed happy with it.

I've always wanted to do a full dynasty league, but the time commitment would be enormous, and I'm not sure how you would deal with it if any owners leave.

Some links with suggestions: ... m?id=13514

And a sample league constitution: ... y-2009.pdf

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