FanDuel is gearing up for the 2017 NFL season in a big way with the launch of new contest types, new lineup editing tools, new ways to play with your friends and more all within the past month.
The latest additions to FanDuel include:
- Friends Mode Championship Leagues
- New lineup editing tools and improvements
- New types of contests
- FanDuel Players Club
Friends Mode Championship Leagues
FanDuel has improved its season-long Friends Mode product with the introduction of Championship Leagues that add a season-long prize that you and your friends can compete for in addition to your regular week-to-week contest payouts.
Now, the league commissioner can establish a buyin at the beginning of the season to establish a prize pool for the league members who perform the best over the course of the season. You and your friends still play for real money prizes each week, but now you will also be competing for the end-of-season payouts.
The original Friends Mode offering was released last year and that is still active with a season-long leaderboard that tracks progress. However, Championship Mode adds a real money element to the mix by requiring a buyin at the beginning of the season in order to establish payouts at the end of the season.
Championship Leagues are sort of a cross between traditional season-long fantasy leagues with daily fantasy. Like traditional fantasy leagues, your progress is tracked over the entire season with payouts offered to those who end up with the best record at the end of the season. Unlike traditional leagues, you get to pick new players each week and compete for weekly prizes.
Mandatory buyins will also serve to encourage your entire league to stay active throughout the entire season. People who abandon their fantasy leagues halfway through the season now have something to lose. At the same time, one bad week won’t spell the end of your fantasy season because everyone starts fresh each week.
We discussed Championship Leagues in a post not too long ago, and you can visit that post here for more details.
New Lineup Editing Tools and Improvements
Building and managing lineups at FanDuel has become more convenient with the introduction of three improvements. FanDuel now supports late swaps for NFL contests, quick player swaps across multiple lineups and CSV editing functionality that allows you to edit multiple lineups with ease.
The late swap feature allows you to change and remove players in your lineups up until their individual games begin. This is opposed to your entire lineup being locked at the beginning of the first game.
For example, let’s say you’re playing in a contest for the Sunday slate that covers all the day games, afternoon games and the evening game. Under normal rules, your entire lineup would lock at the beginning of the first game on Sunday. Under late swap rules, you can still edit players in your evening game even if the day games have already begun.
Not all contests on FanDuel are late swap. If you prefer not to play with late swap enabled, you can still find those types of contests as well. Late swap games are denoted in the FanDuel lobby with an icon that looks like an unlocked padlock.
Quick Player Swaps
FanDuel’s quick swap feature makes it easier than before to switch out players from multiple lineups and replace them with better alternatives. Whether you’ve just changed your mind or breaking news reveals one of your picks is questionable for the game, you can switch that player out of every lineup with just a few clicks so you don’t miss that player in any lineup.
To access quick swap, log in to your FanDuel account and click the “upcoming” tab to see all your contests and active lineups. Then click on the “quick player replace” button in the top-right corner of the screen.
Doing so will take you to another screen which shows all players in your lineups and allow you to quickly switch any player out with a replacement. Just select the replacement and FanDuel will make the switch across all your lineups.
CSV Mass Edit Functionality
FanDuel’s CSV mass edit functionality feature was a popular request among heavy DFS players due to it being so time consuming to use the FanDuel interface to edit large numbers of lineups. Now, you can log in to your FanDuel account to download a .csv file (which can be read by programs like Microsoft Excel) to mass-edit your lineups.
You can find the new feature by logging in to your account, visiting the “upcoming” tab and then selecting “CSV edit” from the top of the screen. From there, you can download a .csv file containing all your lineups and then use that file to make mass edits to all your lineups.
FanDuel does not allow you to create new lineups from scratch using the CSV edit feature; it is strictly for updating existing lineups. This tool will be especially useful for high volume players dealing with breaking news, changing weather conditions and so on.
FanDuel launched the CSV mass edit feature several months back, but the 2017 NFL season will be the first full season for which the new feature is available.
New Types of Contests at FanDuel
FanDuel will soon be adding two new types of contests in time for the NFL season. These include NFL Mini contests with 5-man rosters and micro-stakes contests with entries as low as $0.25.
NFL Mini Contests
The NFL Mini contests will feature 5-man rosters compared to the standard 9-man rosters. This will result in a significantly lower time investment for players on the go. FanDuel has not yet released the details on how exactly NFL Mini contests will work, but that information will be coming out soon.
Micro Stakes Contests
Previously, the lowest buyins FanDuel offered were $1. Although I’m sure $1 isn’t out of reach for most players, lower buyins will make it easier to enter multiple contests. For anyone working with a limited bankroll, $0.25 contests make it possible to enter as many as 4x as many contests now.
FanDuel Players Club
FanDuel has finally launched an actual VIP program that will make use of all those FanDuel points (FDPs) we’ve been earning over the years. FanDuel Points have been around forever as a way to reward players, but the brand-new Players Club just got started this month.
Prior to the introduction of the Players Club, FanDuel points were only used to buy into real money tournaments. Instead of paying $1 to enter a contest, for example, you could choose to instead spend 2400 FDPs.
The Players Club will be changing things on that front. You will still be able to buy into contests with FDPs, but now the simple act of earning FDPs will advance you through a six-tier VIP program. The more points you earn each month, the higher your VIP level and the better your benefits.
Advancing through higher VIP levels unlocks various perks such as free-to-enter contests, room upgrades at live events, access to weekly promotions, premium customer support and more.
All players earn FDPs by entering real money contests. For every $1 you spend on entry fees, you’ll get 5 FDPs.
Is This Just the Beginning?
When FanDuel left the UK market last month, they said they were doing so “focus on our product in the US.” FanDuel has wasted no time in delivering on that promise with the launch of this handful of new features and this bodes well for customers in the United States.
It will be interesting to see what else FanDuel comes out with over the next year. In the meantime, these new features should appeal to a wide range of players between the season-long offering, casual-friendly contests and advanced lineup editing tools.