How to Play Paddy Power Fantasy Sports

If you like playing fantasy sports games then you may be interested in a relatively new addition to the sports betting sector known as Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS). It’s fantasy sports as you know it but the competitions are more regular and you get to bet much more frequently. WhichBookie takes an in-depth look at what it is and how it works.

What are Daily Fantasy Sports?

Daily Fantasy Sports is a type of fantasy sports competition that is played on a per match or tournament basis rather than a per season basis that we are traditionally used to in the UK.  It is a concept that originated in America where it’s much more commonplace than here. Paddy Power have acquired the platform as part of their expansion into the American sports betting industry and we are seeing more and more of it on our shores. 

The format differs from regular fantasy sports you may be used to with different competitions completing on a daily basis. That coupled with the ability to bet against other users and this format of fantasy league feels very different. 

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How does Daily Fantasy Sports Work?

The aim of the game is to put together a sports team using a set budget that scores points based on a scoring matrix similar to points scoring systems in regular fantasy sports.

Choose Your Sport

As the format originated in America, Paddy Power originally offered American sports only but other sports have been added since. You can take your pick from the following sports:

  • NFL
  • NBA
  • Football 
  • Golf
  • Tennis
  • Baseball
  • American Football – College
  • Ice Hockey
  • Woman’s NBA
  • XFL
  • Esports

Choose Your Contest

Once you’ve chosen your sport you can choose from the following types of contests:

  • Beginner Contests: if you’re new to Daily Fantasy Sports you can compete with fellow beginners to get started
  • 50/50s: finish in the top half of the table to win
  • 3-100 players: compete against fewer players for a better chance of winning money
  • Head to Heads: compete against one other person, winner takes all
  • Multipliers: double your money or play for more
  • Beat the Score: the prize money is shared evenly across all the winners
  • Tournaments: these are high paying contests with guaranteed prize pools

Each contest will have different entry fees and levels of difficulty. If you are a beginner make sure you are picking a contest with an entry fee and difficulty you are comfortable with.

Pick Your Players

Picking the right players is the obvious key to implementing a successful fantasy sports strategy. You are allocated a certain ‘Salary Cap’ so you’ll need to make sure you stay within the total when picking your team. Better performing players will usually have higher salaries. Pay attention to lineup requirements as you’ll need to make sure you pick enough players for each position. All players are available and have nothing to do with any other user so you can pick the players you want within the salary cap.

As with other fantasy games, make sure you’re analysing all relevant factors when choosing your lineup. Looking at fixture difficulty, current form, stats and injuries are just some of the ways you can make sure you’re informed when choosing your lineup.

Watch and Win

Once you’ve submitted your lineup you can then sit back, watch the games and let the points roll in (hopefully). Your players will score points based on the different scoring systems so if you’ve picked a good team and you get some luck along the way you’ll do well. If it doesn’t go well then the beauty of this format is you can pick a completely different team for the next match. 

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Different Sport Guides

Paddy Power offers 12 different contests to enter in total. We’ll take a look at the most popular ones separately to give you an idea of what you’re up against. 


You’ll need to pick a team using the following 9 positions: 1 Quarterback, 2 Running Backs, 3 Wide Receivers, 1 Tight End, 1 Defensive End, 1 FLEX (Running Back, Wide Receiver or Tight End)

Each player will have a salary next to their name. Click the ‘plus’ next to a player you want in your team and they will be added to the lineup section. Your players will be scored based on the scoring matrix below.


Choose your lineup based on 9 different positions whilst staying under the salary cap. With NBA the player with the lowest score on your team gets dropped. Your lineup is made up from the following positions: 2 Point Guards, 2 Shooting Guards, 2 Small Forwards, 2 Power Forwards

1 Center. Players are scored based on the below scoring matrix.


For football you’ll need to choose a lineup consisting of 8 players from the following positions: 2 Forwards, 3 Midfielders, 2 Defenders, 1 Goalkeeper. Players will be scored by the below scoring system.

There are some key rules to be aware of when entering fantasy football contests:

  • There are certain game events that only specific positions are eligible for: Goalkeepers, Defenders etc 
  • Points scored during extra time are scored under the same points system
  • Players do not earn points in a penalty shootout 
  • Goalkeeper and defenders need to play an entire match to earn a clean sheet bonus


For golf you’ll need to select 6 different golfers for the entire week’s tournament. If one of your golfers fails to make the cut he won’t receive any more points for the rest of the tournament. Players are scored by the below guide.


Tennis contests are run over the course of a whole tennis tournament. You’ll need to pick 6 players for the tournament making sure you stay under the salary cap. Your lineup will pick up points based on the below scoring guide.


For baseball your lineup will need to consist of players from the following positions: 1 Pitcher

1 Catcher / First Baseman, 1 Second Baseman, 1 Short Stop, 1 Third Baseman, 3 Outfielders, 1 Utility. Players will score points based on the below scoring system.

You can also enter competitions in College America Football, College Basketball, Ice Hockey, NASCAR, WNBA, XFL

League of Legends

League of Legends is a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena game and is one of the most popular Esports games of its kind. Just like other DFS contests, there are standard team requirements and a salary cap to play by. There is one MVP position to pick that will get 1.5X their score. You’ll then have 6 other positions to fill.

Your LoL team will score points based on individual and team play. Scoring is outlined below. 

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Hints and Tips for Playing Daily Fantasy Sports

If you’re just starting out playing Daily Fantasy Sports or if you think you could do with some help improving your strategy, you’ll want to read the following bits of advice.


Make sure you keep up with the news in relation to your chosen sport. You can pick your team right up until the start of the contest so it’s important to factor in any team news or injuries. This is certainly a good way of finding an advantage if you can react to a piece of team news that others have missed. In between contests, if you are aware of events happening in your chosen sports you’ll be much more likely to pick a winning team.


Check which teams have an easy game. Stacking your lineups with players from one team can be a profitable strategy. If you have access to data that points to certain games being likely to go a certain way then you can implement that into your strategy. You’ll find plenty of resources out on the web to provide advice and strategies to help get you learn.

Vary Your Strategy per Sport

Don’t pick the same strategy for each sport. You’ll find that some sports are more data-driven and some will rely on watching the game more. You may find that different sports require different methods when picking your lineup. Either way, make sure you enter a competition for a sport you are familiar with.

Choose the Right Contest

If you are new to playing Daily Fantasy Sports make sure you enter the right contest. This may sound like obvious advice but it can be tempting to get carried away with prizes on offer and enter a contest above your ability level. Start with small stakes in one of the beginner contests while you learn your trade.

Bankroll Management

As with all forms of gambling, you should implement bankroll management if you’re looking to profit from DFS in the long term. You will go through spells of bad luck when you won’t be winning money so it’s important to implement a strategy that will protect your bankroll. How much of your bankroll you use per contest depends on how skilled you are and how risk-averse you are. Most advice out there will tell you not to use more than 10% of your bankroll at any one time. Either way, make sure you have a plan and stick to it.


Daily Fantasy Sports is an exciting new addition to the sport betting market and should not be ignored. It’s big money in America with many users going professional and making a living from it. Paddy Power have done a great job of implementing it in the UK and it is great fun to play. If you’re starting out make sure you start small whilst you get used to the product and, as with all gambling, only bet what you can afford. Happy betting!

If you don’t have an account with Paddy Power yet, you can claim the Paddy Power Sign Up Offer which gives you a free bet of up to £20 if your first bet loses. Click on the button below for more details.

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