Fantasy Football is the most popular fantasy draft sport in the United States. Every season, according to Fantasy Sports & Gaming Association, more than 48 million people play the game. These devotees are largely interested in sports betting, in 2018, according to FSGA, “research found that 79% of fantasy players said there’s at least a good possibility they’d bet on sports if and when a bill is passed to legalize it in their state.”
How popular is Fantasy Football? Of the 60 million who participate in fantasy sports in the U.S. and Canada, 79 percent (or four out of five) play fantasy football. According to ESPN, in 2019, the last year with public data, there were more than 11 million unique registered users on the ESPN Fantasy App (not all were football players, but most were).
Fantasy Sports is a huge business. According to Statista, in 2019 the total revenue from fantasy sports in the U.S. was $8.48 billion. After a dip because of the pandemic, it’s estimated that the numbers will return to near that level again once the 2021 NFL season and NHL and NBA seasons are added this fall.
Which Fantasy Football Site Is Best For You?
|CBS Sports Fantasy||ESPN Fantasy Football||NFL Fantasy Football||Yahoo! Fantasy Sports||Sleeper|
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|KEEPER LEAGUE OPTION||X||X||X||X||X|
|AUCTION VALUE GENERATOR||X||X||X|
|LEAGUE MESSAGE BOARDS||X||X||X|
ESPN Fantasy Football
Your perception of ESPN Fantasy Football may depend wholly on your perspective and what you are looking for. Do you want a free platform to host your league? Then you will like ESPN. Do you want articles and podcasts with the latest and greatest analysis provided by industry experts?
Again—you will like ESPN. Oh, and it is free.
When it comes to hosting your league (i.e., inviting players, holding a draft, week-to-week team management), the ESPN Fantasy Football platform is up to the task. While it may be simple, it is also easy to understand and not hard to use.
However, it is known for having specific issues.
The mobile app has a respectable 4-star rating at the Google Play Store and a 4.7-star rating at the Apple App Store. But numerous complaints exist at both stating roughly the same thing. The app frequently crashes. Scores have been inaccurate. Rosters do not always save properly. Many have had connection issues/trouble loading even in areas with a reliable internet connection, and many more have had trouble logging in.
But while numerous users have had severe issues with the ESPN platform, many more have not.
Is it a good app? Is it worth trying?
That depends a little on your perspective. If you are looking for an app that is easy to navigate and understand, then you will like ESPN. It is not hard to participate in a fantasy football league using the ESPN Fantasy Football app.
It will serve its intended purpose.
But the app is simplistic. If you are interested in a ton of bells and whistles, it is not for you. As for the plethora of complaints, the sheer number is concerning. However, there are even more reports having no issues at all.
Also, to be fair, every other app will have just as many people making the same complaints.
NFL.com Fantasy Football
If you are looking for a Fantasy Football app that has it all, look no further than NFL’s very own Fantasy Football app. It is available for free on Google Play and the App Store.
The app launched in 2009 and since then, has greatly improved. Since the app is sponsored by the NFL, it has all of the latest news and updates including stats from every player. One of the coolest things about the NFL Fantasy Football app is that it features weekly videos of your players’ greatest moments from the game.
The app makes it easy to join existing leagues or create your own and invite your friends. Commissioners tend to favor this app because it is so customizable. From standard to auction and live lobby drafts, there are options to choose from. And the app walks you through everything, so you won’t be confused, even if this is your first time playing.
If you are new to Fantasy Football, this app is ideal because it offers a slew of mock drafts as well as expert analysis to help you set your roster. Trading players and setting your roster each week is a breeze and can be done on your computer or through the app on your phone.
From the smooth navigation to the user-friendly set-up, the NFL Fantasy Football App is consistently ranked at the top as one of the very best Fantasy Football apps out there.
CBS Sports Fantasy Football
CBS fantasy football is a pretty solid platform that could jump up the rankings with some changes. I will break up my section into “pros” which will discuss where CBS does better than products and “cons” where they really struggle.
- CBS Fantasy Draft Is Top Notch
I loved the CBS Fantasy draft when I did it. It is clean, easily searchable, and my team came out phenomenally well when I wanted to make picks. Moreover, the draft speed was excellent. This is where they really stood out. I have seen ESPN’s draft servers crumble — perhaps that is because their volume is so high. Regardless, the speed was excellent and I am here for reliability when I draft.
- App Provides Countless Features At The Tap Of A Finger
CBS’s app is impressively good. Aside from being able to do the simple stuff like view things in your league, you can also look at William Hill Sportsbook’s odds for any game, read articles, and even play other games like pick em’. This is a huge win for the CBS Fantasy product.
- Add/Drop is confusing
It seems like a very simple thing but CBS does not meet expectations here. You cannot sort players by their owned percentages in the league. Instead, they give you the ability to add players by projections by week and for the year. What if a player is injured and coming back soon? Well, CBS Sports just made it more difficult to find that player.
- Player Updates Are Slower
So this is not me being a hater, but Yahoo! And ESPN outsource their player updates from a variety of companies. CBS Sports gets all of their player updates from RotoWire. They are a solid company, but Yahoo! wins this battle by a mile. CBS Sports are slower and provide significantly less context across the board.
Sleeper Fantasy Football
Sleeper is one of the newest Fantasy Football apps out there, but it is quickly heading to the top as one of the best apps to use for Fantasy Football. It is available on Google Play and the App Store for free download.
This app is great for commissioners looking to take control of their league, as it offers customizable options for commissioners. The app also sends out league news quickly, so you will have plenty of time to get your roster right before each game.
Since the app actually started out as a platform for sports fans to hold conversations, the Fantasy Football feature is focused on keeping that social interaction alive. Most of the screens on the app include a chat feature for you to converse with friends. The app even comes with a special feature to help you hold in-person drafts, making it a much more involved Fantasy Football app.
The homepage of the app has all of the details of your league. From a draft countdown to a complete list of league settings including waiver rules and scoring, the app has all of the information you need right at your fingertips. The straightforward navigation menu helps you find exactly what you are looking for such as your roster or current league standings.
The user-friendly app makes it easy to play Fantasy Football while also chatting with friends. For those who don’t like flashy interfaces, this app is simple and gets the job done.
Yahoo! Fantasy Football
Yahoo! may have had its struggles in recent years, but the company has offered its fantasy football platform for a long time. The result? A sharply honed fantasy football web and mobile app that makes it easy to run (or participate in) your league.
Like ESPN, Yahoo! Fantasy Football is free to use, has a clean and intuitive interface, and generally shunts advertisements to the sidelines. You’ll still see ads, don’t get me wrong, but they’re unintrusive and don’t interfere with the experience as much as they do on other platforms.
As for the actual Fantasy Football interface from Yahoo!…it’ll get the job done. I’ve played in numerous leagues over the past ten years or so, and a handful of them used Yahoo!. Personally, I never found anything on the platform difficult to use. Setting my lineup, hawking the waiver wires, and proposing trades are all simple actions with Yahoo! Fantasy Football.
Beware, though, that’s not everybody’s experience. The Yahoo! Fantasy Football app boasts a 4.8-star rating in the iOS App Store.
Some users claim the app just looks and feels dated, leading them to greener metaphorical pastures.
But there’s a catch. The app is actually called Yahoo! Fantasy & Daily Sports. The app includes both normal, weekly fantasy leagues AND Yahoo!’s Daily Fantasy Sports platform. Though the two are related, they’re very different types of Fantasy. If you’re seeking a platform for a traditional fantasy league and using reviews to help you decide, it can be tough to parse out which side of the app reviewers are talking about.
Many of the negative reviews I saw focused on the Daily Fantasy side, meaning you’re probably in the clear if you’re just looking for an easy, free Fantasy Football platform.
More To Come As The Season Approaches
Need a spot to find all your fantasy football tips and info? Gaming Today has you covered. Stay tuned for more guides, including position rankings. Looking to draft a top quarterback? Here are our top 15 picks.