Overview
Is the only thing

that has kept you from buying your own NFL franchise a stadium lease and about six hundred million dollars? Well, owning your own team of pro football players just became affordable!

Boxscore Football is the sophisticated web based (or play-by-mail) strategy football game that lets football fans own and coach a team of pro football players. You become the owner, the general manager, and the head coach. As your team's GM you decide which players to draft, evaluate rookie talent, release players, put players on injured reserve, and negotiate trades with the GMs of other franchises. As your team's head coach you wear the headset, set line-ups, decide when to substitute, analyze opponent's strengths, and develop strategies that you think can take your club to the playoffs, a spot in the top 20, and possibly a berth in the Boxscore Bowl.

Team performances are based on the production of its players week in and week out throughout the actual pro football season as measured through individual statistics. When Peyton Manning tosses a TD pass, put the points up on your team's scoreboard (if you own Manning and your scoreboard is working). You will be competing with other avid football fans from across the country. Actual pro football statistics are used in computing individual game results so keeping tabs on the players is as simple as following their performance on TV or checking the game summaries in the newspaper.

Boxscore Football is a challenging game dedicated to the avid and knowledgeable football fan who would like to enjoy the ultimate football challenge; owning and operating a pro football team. The following ground rules fully explain this statistical sports game that puts you both in the front office and down on the sideline. A Boxscore Football head coaching position has just become available. Can you handle the job?

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The Draft
So you're all set

to assemble your football dynasty. Boxscore provides two types of drafts - a live draft using an Internet chat room or a "blind auction" style.

Internet Draft

Internet drafts are fairly simple. At a given time (usually on Saturday or Sunday one or two weeks prior to the start of the NFL season), a group of 12 owners and the Commissioner meet at an Internet chat room. Team numbers from 1 through 12 are preassigned by a random draw. In the first round (and each subsequent odd numbered round), the teams pick in order from team one through team 12. In the even numbered rounds, the order is reversed, team 12 going first, and then down to team one. The draft proceeds until each team has filled their 17 man roster.

Blind Auction Drafts

This drafting method is designed to allow each owner to assemble a team of players to his own specifications. The innovative drafting technique provides each team with an equal opportunity at drafting each individual. In late August, Boxscore releases the draft list for the coming season. (Click here to see the latest draft list.) You will see on the draft lists that the players have been placed into groups of twelve (according to position) and that at the top of each group is a place marked BID. Each owner has 100 Bid Points to distribute over all of the sets of players. That is, the total of all your bids should equal 100. The open round set is left blank for you to fill in with players not listed elsewhere (all players in the NFL are eligible for your team, not just the ones listed on the draft sheet).

Owners bid on each set of players according to how highly they hope to draft from that group. For example, if you feel that a top running back is the key for your successful Boxscore football campaign and you want to ensure yourself of a good one, you would use a higher number of your bid points (maybe 15 or 17) on this group of players. Of course remember, the more you bid on one group the less bid points you will have available for other positions. Every group must have a bid of at least 1 (except the Open Round where bids of zero result in teams drafting one less player), and your total bids should equal 100.

Second, you will find a space next to each player's name. This is for you to rank each player in that group, first through twelfth, according to how much you would like to have that player playing for you in the upcoming season(s). Each player in the group should be ranked differently; one first, one second, one third, etc. So, a completed draft list should have every player on the list with a number (1-12) next to his name and a bid at the top of each set, the sum total of which should equal 100.

Once Boxscore has received 12 draft lists from prospective owners we will hold your league's draft. The owner who has allotted the highest bid on a group of players will receive first pick from that group, the owner who has made the second highest bid for that group will get second pick and so on for each of the twelve picks. If you have the first pick in a group, you will be awarded the player you ranked first, then the owner who picks second will be awarded the player he ranked first unless that player is already taken, he would then receive the player he ranked second. The rare instance of ties between owners who make the same bid on a group and rate a player identically will be broken on a rotating basis to ensure the fairest drafting procedure. This drafting process continues with each owner receiving his highest ranked available player in each group.

At the conclusion of the draft each owner will have a team roster of 16 or 17 players. We send you the roster of your team's players, as well as the rosters of the other teams in your league, with the names, addresses and phone numbers of the other team offices you are competing with. This initial roster also includes a summary of the draft with the bids and rankings that the other owners used in assembling their squads, so you can study their drafting strategies.

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The Leagues
Each

Boxscore Football league is made up of 12 teams, divided into 3 divisions of 4 teams each (an Eastern division, a Central division, and a Western division). Team entries are placed in the division that best represents the geographic location of the team owner's home city. Leagues are named after the top head coaches from throughout the history of the NFL.

Two general types of leagues exist - annual and continuing. Annual leagues are formed each year with a new draft, although the owners may be the same from year to year, if they want to stay together.

Boxscore Football has provisions for 3 year leagues in which team's maintain player rosters over a 3 season period. During each off-season teams release players to get down to the off-season roster limit of 10. A re-entry draft of released players and rookie players entering the NFL is then conducted in the same format as the original draft with the team with the poorest record having the most Bid Points and the team with the best record having the fewest (Re-Entry Bid Points = 25 + 2 per loss). 3 year leagues allow Boxscore Football GMs to remain active year round, negotiating trades (Bid Points may be traded), waiving and claiming players, scouting the NFL rookie crop, and preparing their team for the next season. By a vote of at least 9 of the 12 owners, leagues may choose to become continuing, with no fixed date to disband.

Many owners have a team in a continuing league and another in an annual league to have the best of both worlds.

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Roster and Player Eligibility
Boxscore

Football team rosters are limited to 19 players (17 active, 2 injured reserve) throughout the football season. A team may consist of any combination of quarterbacks, running backs, receivers, place kickers & team defenses. Sound football strategy would suggest a roster that would allow you depth at each of the positions, should one of your starting players become injured or not qualify during a week. Each week you receive the updated rosters and transactions of each team in your league.

As part of each team's roster of 19, team's carry one or more special players known as "team defenses". These special players are actually the real life team defenses of an NFL team and, like regular position players, fill up team roster slots. For example, if you drafted the Chicago Bears' defense it would fill one roster slot and the Bears' defensive statistics would be used each week (should you choose to start them) against your opponent. You may, of course, choose to carry more than one team defense on your roster.

At the beginning of the season, all players are eligible to play a single position, the position at which they were drafted. However, during the course of the NFL season, a player may be moved to a new position. Should this occur, and only at the discretion of Boxscore Sports, the new position will take the place of the player's old position. Upcoming position changes will be noted several weeks in advance in the weekly newsletter.

A player will be considered to have qualified in any given week by meeting the following requirements:

  • A quarterback will be considered to have qualified should he make a passing attempt.
  • A running back will be considered to have qualified should he make a rushing attempt or catch a pass.
  • Wide receivers and tight ends will be considered to have qualified should they have a pass reception.
  • Place-kickers always qualify, regardless of whether they appear in the game summaries (score points) or not.
  • Team defenses, of course, always play (though sometimes that is debatable).

Roster Management

WAIVER CLAIMS

Each team is allowed to claim a maximum of two players per week off waivers. Players eligible to be claimed include all players in the NFL and not on another team's roster.

At the beginning of the season, each Boxscore team is allotted the right to claim 16 players through the waiver claim procedure. The weekly Boxscore Sports results package keeps owners updated on how many waiver claims each team has left. Teams are allowed to trade these potential claims. For example, a team might trade a player plus two claims to another team for a player.

A team attempting to claim a player must make room on its roster for acquiring the new player. Roster openings are accomplished in one of three ways; by waiving a player, by making an unbalanced trade (e.g. 2 for 1 or 3 for 2), or by placing a player on reserve. The most common method of making a waiver claim is to list the player(s) you wish to drop from your roster and then to list, in order of preference, players you wish to claim. Your team will be awarded the first eligible player on your list. Should two or more teams attempt to claim the same player during the same week of play, the team with the poorer record will be awarded the player. If none of the players a team attempts to claim are available, the team retains the player it had attempted to waive, or in the case of an unbalanced trade, the team would simply be short a player for the week. Waiver claims will not be processed from line-up cards that are submitted late.

Coaches should continue to list the player they waived on their line-up, with a notation that they have waived that player, and the newly claimed player will be automatically substituted. If the acquired player plays a different position than the one waived, the new player will be placed at the bottom of the teams bench unless special instructions are noted by the owner (you!) on his line-up.

A maximum of two players may be acquired per week off waivers; hence, should a team make unbalanced trades during a week causing its roster to fall to 16 players or less, it would take a minimum of two line-up weeks for the team to get its roster back up to the full compliment of 19 players.

There is no fee for claiming a player off waivers. Successful Boxscore owners make extensive use of waiver claims and continue to pick up key personnel throughout the season. Updated league transactions, game scores, point spreads, and chatter are available by phone 24 hours a day on our voice message system (touch-tone phone required).

Warning: A team with no claims remaining after the trading deadline is up the creek as far as adding any new players (can't trade, can't claim, can't trade for a claim, but can they swim?)

RESERVE

At all times, team rosters are limited to 19 players. Of the 19, each team has 17 slots for active players and 2 slots for reserve . The reserve slots have a two week duration. That is, a player placed on reserve must remain there for a minimum of two weeks. For example, a player placed on reserve on a team's week 2 line-up card becomes eligible to be activated in week 4- missing weeks 2 and 3. After having served his two week stint on reserve a player may be activated in any subsequent week - with the activation counting as one of the two moves (waiver claims) allowed for the team that week. (For example, if you activated a player off your team's reserve in week 7 you would only be allowed one waiver claim in week 7, activate two players in a week, no claims.) Activating players off of reserve does not count against the total number of remaining waiver claims a team has.

To activate a player a team must make room on its active roster either by waiving a player, making a trade in which it gives up more players than it gets, or by placing an active player on reserve. Players need not be actually on the injured reserve in the NFL to be placed on a Boxscore team's reserve.

TRADES

At the beginning of the season you receive the names, addresses and phone numbers of all the owners in your league. The schedule you receive when you join a Boxscore Football league gives the trading deadline, the week 12 line-up card. There is no transaction fee for making a trade. The Coach's Box column of the weekly newsletter will aid you in learning what kind of deals other owners are looking for.

Trades should be reported on your weekly line-up card. Once we receive notification from both owners of the deal, the trade will become official. Deals cannot be made official without notification from both owners, and will only go through as long as both owners list the trade identically and on the same week's line-up card. You may begin to use the players you trade for immediately. We will substitute the old players should the deal not go through for some reason. If you make a deal in which your team acquires more players than it gives up, you must list the necessary number of players to be waived to get your roster back down to the 19 player limit on the same line-up card that you listed the trade. We will release players should you fail to do so.

The Commissioner reserves the right to veto any trades deemed not in the league's best interest.

Boxscore teams are not allowed to re-acquire a player in a trade that they have previously traded that season. For example; in week 6 you trade Troy Aikman, you cannot re-acquire Aikman in a trade for the remainder of the season. The purpose of this rule is to avoid the 'loaning' of players to get around the NFL's bye weeks.

In continuing leagues, re-entry bid points may only be traded in the off-season.

THE WEEKLY UPDATE

Every week you receive, via a Tuesday afternoon web posting (or by first class mail if you are a non-web player) from the league office, the weekly update package which includes the following:

  • The quarter by quarter scoring for each game played in your league. Each game by game scoring summary includes all individual player stats that contributed so what went right (and wrong) is easily discernable.
  • The updated standings for your league, including season-to-date team stats in all statistical categories, claims remaining, potential playoff stats, etc., etc. "If it's not in Boxscore's results- it ain't worth knowing!"
  • Updated team rosters listing each team's active roster, injured reserve, and all league transactions (trades, claims, activations, etc.) plus a Scouting Report listing some of the players by position who are eligible to be claimed on waivers. Rosters also include every players' Boxscore scoring contributions on the season.
  • A player statistical summary listing all players' performances for the week.
  • The Coach's Box column, a forum for each team owner to make comments about the game, boast about his team, and say just about anything he wants to. Astute general managers make use of this column to seek out trades with other teams. A typical note might look like this:
    "The Pigskins are looking for a durable all-purpose running back. Will deal claims and a wide receiver - (yes even Jerry Rice can be had)."
  • The Commissioner's Comments will keep you abreast of any league happenings and important deadlines as well as announce contests, predictions, tips, anecdotes and other gossip & trivia.
  • Jimmy the Geek point spreads on next week's games.
  • Each week we also publich a newslwtter with general information about the various Football Leagues. Click here for a sample Newsletter.

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The Game, The Game
Boxscore football

is designed to be as much like real football as possible, given the limitations of any statistical simulation. It requires you to think to win! The key features include:

Each week of the 17-week NFL regular season, you will be playing another team in your league according to the schedule you receive at the beginning of the season. Your team's statistics are compiled on a weekly basis, usually Sunday and Monday, depending on the NFL schedule for the week. Every week you start with a clean slate, past weeks' performances have no bearing on the statistics earned by your players in the current week (though they are good predictors). Each team's statistics are compiled from the stats of the starting players that qualified for the week and according to any player substitutions dictated by your line-up card. The catch is that you fill out your line-up and strategies prior to the week's games being played.

If one of your starting players does not qualify, the backup player that is listed highest on your bench who is eligible to play that position will start, assuming the backup qualifies. When a backup player replaces a non-qualifying starting player, the backup will maintain the same minimum yard substitution criteria as the starting player he replaces. Should no player on your roster qualify to play a certain position during the week, no statistics will be accumulated from that position.

Each week throughout the 17-week season, owners send the league office a completed line-up card on which they will report starting line-ups, benched players, strategies, transactions, and any comments for the Coach's Box section of the newsletter. The schedule you receive when joining a Boxscore league lists the important deadlines for posting line-up cards. If line-up cards are not received for a given week, or received after the deadline, the previous week's line-up is used.

The rules for filling out a team's line-up card are straight forward and studies show that even defensive tackles can master them in no time (well, maybe not tackles, but linebackers do okay).

First, fill out the heading, being sure to list your team's number, the name of the league you're in and the week number from the schedule. Then, fill out your starting line-up and player bench section. Each starting line-up consists of 1 quarterback, 2 (or 1) running backs, 2 (or 3) wide receivers, 1 tight end, 1 place kicker, and a team defense. Teams have the option of either playing the week's game with a one back - three wide receiver offense or a two back - two wide receiver set.

The minimum yards strategy allows a coach a means of substituting for a player he feels is not performing up to par. Next to each position in the starting line-up is a place to fill in with your yardage minimums. This specified minimum yardage requirement is then compared to the yardage actually accumulated by the starting player. For quarterbacks, this is the player's passing yardage, for running backs, this is the player's rushing yardage and for wide receivers and tight ends this is the players receiving yardage.

Should a starting player not meet the designated minimum yardage he will then have all of his statistics combined and averaged with the top qualifying reserve. This strategy approximates a real life coach's ability to remove a player in mid-game who is not performing up to expectations. If your line-up has no qualifying reserve to replace a starter then the starting player will play the whole game regardless of whether or not he met the designated minimum yardage.

Follow this example, the Hard-Time Hitters have indicated on their line-up card the following line-up and minimum yardage strategies at quarterback:

STARTING LINE-UP

RESERVES

QB ( 180 ) P.Manning QB-reserve #1 M Brunell
QB-reserve #2 K Collins
position (min yds) player

Say during the week Manning passes for 178 yards. In this example Manning didn't meet the minimum yardage requirement so he would be subbed for in the 2nd half. His stats would be combined and averaged (divided by two) with Brunell's stats. This averaging includes all of the player's stats (attempts, completions, yards, touchdowns, interceptions, etc.) accumulated for the week. If Brunell had passed for 212 yards your team would be credited with 195 yards passing - (178 plus 212 divided by 2). But had Manning passed for 180 or more yards then all his stats would have counted and Brunell's stats would not be used. Should Manning not have qualified (by not making a pass attempt) then Brunell would be substituted and the minimum yardage criteria would be compared to his passing yardage to see if Brunell would be subbed for in the 2nd half, assuming the team had another qualifying backup (Collins in this example) with whom he could be replaced and stats averaged.

The minimum yardage criteria are handled in a similar fashion for the running backs and receivers. Players who do not meet the designated yardage criteria are subbed for by having their game stats averaged with a qualifying reserve. The strategy allows a coach some protection from a player having a bad day, however there is no guarantee that the reserve's statistics will be all that great, and the substitution/averaging might not be an improvement at all. Teams with deep benches are best able to take advantage of player substitution.

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Game Scoring
This section

explains the unique Boxscore scoring method which forms the heart of Boxscore Football. Since this copyrighted method of converting player stats to Boxscore game points is so what makes Boxscore Football unique, we will present here just a summary. When you sign up to play Boxscore football, you will receive the complete scoring calculations.

The following describes how statistics accumulated by your team's players during the week are compared with your opponent's teams statistics to develop game scores. Statistics in any of the following offensive categories (by any players you use during the week) contribute to your team's weekly totals.

STATS - OFFENSE

Passing Rushing
  • Yards Passing
  • Touchdown Passes
  • Intercepted Passes
  • Yards/Attempt
  • Yards Rushing
  • Touchdowns Rushing

Receiving Kicking
  • Yards Receiving
  • Touchdowns Receiving
  • Number of Receptions
  • Place-Kicker Points
  • Place-Kicker Longest Field Goal

The rare and unusual plays of any of your offensive players count towards your weekly team totals. For example, should one of your running backs throw a touchdown pass; the TD pass, as well as the passing yards on the play, contribute to your team totals for the week.

Punt and kick-off returns for touchdowns by individual offensive players count as rushing touchdowns. The player would still need to qualify for the week (RB- rushing attempt or reception, WR- reception) for the TD kick return to be included.

STATS - DEFENSE

Team Defense
  • Team Defense Wins
  • Turnovers (Takeaways)
  • Sacks
  • Yards Passing Allowed
  • Yards Rushing Allowed
  • Points Allowed

Note: A team defense is only held accountable for points scored against it while the defense is on the field. For example, if your team defense is the Chicago Bears and the Bears opponent for the week returned an interception for a touchdown, the touchdown and associated extra point would not count against your team defense. In NFL play, the team kicking-off is considered the defensive team so kick-off returns for TDs count against your team defense (while punt returns do not). A Team Defensive Unit's number of turnovers (takeaways) is equal to its interceptions plus fumbles recovered.

Team totals in each of the offensive statistical categories are derived by adding the individual statistics of each of the players who your team used for the week.

The quarter-by-quarter scoring method provides a realistic assessment of translating your team's performance into Boxscore Football game scores. The method has been play tested using real NFL game summaries with the formula yielding overall Boxscore game scores similar to the results which actually occurred.

Football scoring is so complex, we suggest you contact us.

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Playoffs
Five teams

from each Boxscore league qualify for the playoffs. Each of the three divisional winners qualify as well as two Wild Card teams. The Wild Card teams are the two non-divisional winning teams with the best records (they could be from the same division). Should teams tie with identical season records the following are the tie-breaking procedures:

1. Head to head records between all tied clubs.
2. Divisional record (for divisional champs, not Wild Cards).
3. Best net points in head to head games.
4. Best net points in all games.
5. Commissioner bribe (it's never gotten this far).
6. Coin toss.

The first round of playoffs matches the two Wild Card teams against each other at the home of the team with the better record. The second round of playoffs then matches the Wild Card game winner at the home of the team with the league's best record, and the divisional winner with the third best record at the home of the divisional winner with the second best record. The 2nd round playoff winners then square off at a neutral site (no home field advantage) in the Boxscore Bowl.

The playoffs take place at the conclusion of the 17 week NFL regular season and game results are based on each team pitting its best weekly stats against its playoff opponent. The weekly results show every teams potential playoff statistics- noting each team's top six statistical performances in three overall categories - offense, defense and kicking. Playoff games are calculated in the same manner as regular season games (with three exceptions, noted below) using each team's selected performances.

Each team selects which weeks offensive, defensive and kicking stats it wants to use as they advance through each round of the Boxscore Playoffs. The strategy implications are enormous - should a team save it's best stats for the Boxscore Bowl (since a given weeks stats can only be used once) and risk losing an early round game, or use it's best weeks early to insure advancing to the next round? If your opponent has a great running game, perhaps you should use a defensive week that is not so good overall, but has very low rush yards allowed to offset his rushing stats.

There are three modifications made for the playoff and Boxscore Bowl scoring procedure.

  • Home playoff teams are automatically awarded 3 points. The Boxscore Bowl has no home field advantage.
  • Each team is awarded (or loses) points depending on how hot they were over the last 5 weeks of the regular season:
LAST 5 WEEKS RECORD POINTS
5 - 0
4 - 1
3 - 2
2 - 3
1 - 4
0 - 5
+5
+3
+1
-1
-3
-5

  • Since playoff games cannot end in a tie, in the first overtime, the team with the longest field goal will score 3 points. If both teams have the same longest field goal, the second overtime will be decided by comparing the longest field goal from each team's best six weeks of kicking stats.

All the factors that influence playoff game results are updated in the weekly results package. Teams that have sewn up playoff slots will want to concentrate on improving statistical areas in which they may be deficient - while at the same time keep winning to get the "hot team" bonus. The battle for playoff supremacy becomes Boxscore Football's game-within-the-game as the regular season unfolds. It will become obvious (and sometimes painfully so) just where a team must improve if it wants to defeat a future playoff opponent. The suspense and strategy is incredible- with playoff results up in the air until the final whistle blows on the Boxscore Bowl!!

Football playoffs are so complex, we suggest you contact us.

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Fees & Awards
Every week

teams may bet on the outcome of their game versus the point spread. Point spreads for the upcoming week's games are announced on the voice mail system and on the web weekly results page. If both teams bet on the game then the bet becomes official. Teams may bet any amount of Boxscore Bucks up to the amount in their account with the smaller bet of the two teams becoming the bet amount.

Each league champion receives an engraved trophy recognizing his accomplishment, plus 100 dollars in Boxscore Bucks. The league runner-up (Boxscore Bowl loser) will receive $20.00 worth of Boxscore Bucks which may be used for credit during any future Boxscore Sports seasons.

Each week, the newsletter posts the Boxscore Football Top Twenty- the top Boxscore Football teams from all leagues across the country. Top Twenty ratings are based on each team's won-loss record and statistical averages compared to all Boxscore teams.

After each league completes it's Boxscore Bowl, a Super Playoff is held among all the league champions. Teams are seeded based on their Top Twenty ranking and the scoring is similar to that of the league playoffs.

The owner winning the SUper Playoff has his name added to the prestigious Art Rooney Sr. Memorial Award (Boxscore's highest honor) and is able to display the trophy in his team's front office during the following year.

In addition, all teams are eligible to win (or lose) Boxscore Bucks every week as follows:

Weekly Prizes--Boxscore Bucks

1. Team Scores 35-39 points
$ 3
2. Team Scores 40-49 Points
5
3. Team Scores 50 + Points
10
4. Team Allows 35-39 Points
$ 3
5. Team Allows 40-49 Points
5
6. Team Allows 50 + Points
$ 3
7. 5 TD's passing, rushing, or receiving
3
8. Win steak of 8 + games (regular season)
40
The weekly results track team winnings with all prize money awarded at the end of the season.
Fees

Team Fees

1st Team

Additional Teams

All Leagues - Seasonal and Continuing
$120.00 $100.00

Team fees are required with team application. Boxscore Bucks may be used to pay for all or part of any fees. Boxscore Bucks may also be redeemed for cash at 70% of face value.

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Getting Started in Boxscore Football
Getting

started in Boxscore depends on the time of the year. To draft a new team, get started in March with the draft sheet. Click here to register your team and fill out the draft sheet.

To take over a team at any time of the year, click on AVAILABLE TEAMS to see the availability, rosters and fees for teams needing new owners.

If you have any questions please contact the Commissioner directly by e-mail (Boxscore@bellsouth.net) or by toll free phone (888-833-13451).

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