Rules and Settings

(Note: Timing elements of this document refer to guillotine leagues that start before Week 1.)

General Overview

A Guillotine League (GL) begins with 17 teams, and each week, league results are determined by the cumulative points from each team’s starting lineup. After each week, the team that scored the fewest points that week is eliminated from the competition.

When a team is eliminated, its entire roster of players become free agents, eligible to be acquired by the rest of the league.

There are no head-to-head matchups, which means there are also no win/loss records.

So, to recap, one of the original 17 teams will be eliminated after Week 1, which means 16 teams will remain in Week 2. After the lowest scoring team is chopped in Week 2, 15 teams will be left standing in Week 3. This process continues throughout the season. You get the idea.

Lastly, there are two GL formats to choose from: Final Four Playoff (F4) and Last Man Standing (LMS). The only distinction between these formats is the criteria for choosing a champion and payouts.

In the F4 playoff format, after the conclusion of Week 13, the final four remaining teams are no longer eliminated. They will play from Weeks 14-16 and the team with the most cumulative points from Weeks 14-16 is declared the winner.

In the LMS format, the same format used in the regular season continues, with one team eliminated each week until the conclusion of Week 16. The last team remaining after Week 16 is the winner.

Entry Fees and Prizes

F4 Format

In this format, the final four remaining teams play Weeks 14-16. There is no elimination during this period. The highest scoring team from Weeks 14-16 is the winner. Prizes are also awarded to second and third place.

Entry Fee1st2nd3rd
$15$150$45$20
$30$300$90$40
$50$450$180$90
$100$1,000$300$160
$200$2,000$660$300

(Importantly, note that the above prize structure is for leagues that start in the preseason, with 17 teams. Leagues that start during the regular season have fewer teams and a differing prize structure. See each individual contest's details for its prize structure.)

LMS Format

In this format, there is no playoff period. The last team remaining after Week 16 is the winner and gets the entire prize pool.

Entry FeeGrand Prize
$15$215
$30$430
$50$720
$100$1,480
$200$2,960

(Importantly, note that the above prize structure is for leagues that start in the preseason, with 17 teams. Leagues that start during the regular season have fewer teams and a differing prize structure. See each individual contest's details for its prize structure.)

*There is a $2.95 administration fee for all league entries

Insurance

During league registration, you will have the option to purchase insurance against a Week 1 elimination. At the conclusion of Week 1, losing owners who bought insurance will be granted a free entry into a future league at the same entry fee (or less). We offer guillotine leagues that start in Weeks 2 (and beyond), so you can immediately join a new league.

The table below depicts the cost of insurance for each entry fee offered.

Entry FeeInsurance Cost
$15$2
$30$4
$50$7
$100$14
$200$28


League Size and Duration

All leagues are 17 teams, and gameplay lasts from Weeks 1 through 16 of the NFL regular season.

Drafts

All GL drafts are serpentine style, meaning the draft order is reversed after each round has ended. All drafts consist of 14 rounds (14 picks per owner). The draft timer depends on which draft format you choose, Live (Online) drafts or Slow (Email) drafts. Further detail provided below.

You will be able to set your pre-draft player rankings from the league's home page at any point before the draft starts (see below). We highly encourage you to set your player rankings, which provides guidance for our systems if you are unable to make your selection. Your pre-draft rankings are also global, meaning you can use them for future drafts.

Live (Online) Drafts

*Draft Timer: 60 seconds per pick

All live drafts are held in our online draft room that can be accessed on either a mobile or desktop device. You can access the live draft room at any point after registering, and once your league has filled, the draft order will be randomly generated (results will also be sent via email). We encourage you to familiarize yourself with the draft room prior to your draft, and you need to arrive at least several minutes before its scheduled start to ensure that you are not experiencing any technical issues.

When it's time for you to make a selection, you will have 60 seconds to make your pick. There is an available player queue which provides guidance for our systems if it needs to auto-draft for you. The auto-draft control is located underneath the draft clock in the upper-left of the draft room (see below).

If you do not make a pick before the 60-second timer has expired, the system will select the top-ranked player in your queue. Or if your queue is empty, the top-ranked player (with an open roster position) from the remaining available player pool will be selected. In addition, if you fail to make a pick before the draft timer expires, you will automatically be put on auto-draft, which must manually turned off (see image above). Also, if you are late to the draft room for the start of the draft, you will put on auto-draft, which must be manually turned off upon entering the draft room.

It is your sole responsibility to ensure you make it to the start of you scheduled draft. If you think you may be late or miss your draft entirely, remember to utilize pre-draft player ranking feature (mentioned above) to ensure you have to best chance to obtain your preferred players.

If your league has not reached at least 13 (of 17) entrants before 10 minutes of the scheduled start, then the league will be cancelled and your account will be refunded in full. However, if your league has at least 13 members within 10 minutes of the scheduled start time, the start time will be extended by 10 minutes in an effort to fill the league. After that, the start time will be extended another 10 minutes if another member joins. This process continues for 30 minutes after the original scheduled start time. If the league is not full after 30 minutes from the original start time, it will be cancelled and your account will be refunded in full.

Slow (Email) Drafts

*Draft Timer: 2 or 6 hours per pick (both options available)

Slow drafts are held in our same online draft room as live drafts, but the difference is slow drafts take days to complete, not hours. Upon registering for a slow draft, you will have the option of choosing a draft timer of 2 or 6 hours per pick. Please note, the draft timer will be suspended every night from 11:00 PM CST to 7:00 AM CST. (For those on Pacific Time, note that the clock will resume at 5:00 AM PT, so be sure to have your preferred players in the queue.)

Just like live drafts, you can access your draft room at any point after registering for your slow draft. Once your league has filled, the draft order will be randomly generated, and you will be emailed your league's draft order and the scheduled start time (generally 1 hour after league has filled). As you could prior to the start of the draft, you can enter the draft room at any point while your slow draft is in progress, and you will be notified vie email every time you are on the clock (settings can be adjusted on site).

Depending on your league's timer, once the draft has started, you will have either 2 or 6 hours (when on the clock) to make each pick, and you will be able to move players in and out of the queue for reference, or for use with the auto-draft feature. The auto-draft control is located underneath the draft clock in the upper-left of the draft room (see below).

If you do not make a pick before your timer has expired, the system will select the top-ranked player in your queue. Or if your queue is empty, the top-ranked player (with an open roster position) from the remaining available player pool will be selected. In addition, if you fail to make a pick before your draft timer expires, you will automatically be put on auto-draft, which must manually turned off (see image above).

Roster Requirements

Rosters will consist of 14 players (8 starters and 6 reserves). Starting lineups must consist of the following:

Quarterback1
Running Back2
Wide Receiver2
Tight End1
FLEX (RB/WR/TE)2


Scoring

Below is the scoring format for all leagues. Please note there are no negative points for turnovers.

StatPoints
Passing Yards.04 for each (1 for every 25 yards)
Passing Touchdowns4 for each
Passing 2-Point Conversions2 for each
Rushing Yards.1 for each (1 for every 10 yards)
Rushing Touchdowns6 for each
Rushing 2-Point Conversions2 for each
Receptions1 for each
Receiving Yards.1 for each (1 for every 10 yards)
Receiving Touchdowns6 for each
Receiving 2-Point Conversions2 for each
Kickoff or Punt Return Touchdowns6 for each


Stat Corrections

Guillotine Leagues do not allow for Thursday stat corrections for the previous week’s games. All weekly stats are considered final at the conclusion of the last game of the current week, typically after Monday Night Football.

Tie Breakers

In the event of a scoring tie at any point in the season (including Week 1), the follow tie-breaking criteria will be used:

1. The team with fewest year-to-date points is eliminated (excludes Week 1).

2. If Step 1 does not break the tie, the team with the starting player who scored the fewest points is eliminated. In the event of a continuing tie, this methodology continues by comparing the second-lowest-scoring player, the third-lowest-scoring player, and so forth until ties are resolved.

3. In the mind-bogglingly unlikely possibility that a tie still exists, we apply the above system to backup players, starting with a comparison of the lowest-scoring backup.

Free Agent Acquisition

All free agents are initially acquired via blind bidding using your Free Agent Acquisition Budget (FAAB). All owners begin the season with a $1,000 FAAB, and in order to acquire a player on waivers, a minimum bid of $1 must be placed. Remember, this is blind bidding, so the other owners in your league cannot see what you have bid on a player until after waivers have processed.

Blind bidding occurs on Wednesdays and Thursdays during the regular season, as detailed in the next section.

A player is awarded to the owner with the highest bid, and in the event of a tie for the highest bid, the player will be awarded to the owner with the lowest overall season-to-date point total.

Following each Thursdays waiver wire period (detailed further below), all remaining available free agents can be added on a first-come-first-serve (FCFS) basis up until a player's respective kick-off time for that week. Once an available player's game kicks off, he is put on waivers until the next week's Wednesday waiver wire period. FCFS transactions are free, so even those with a $0 FAAB budget can still make FCFS transactions.

As an anti-cheating measure, when you add a free agent to your roster during FCFS, that player cannot be dropped in the same week.

Waiver Wire Periods

Preseason Waiver Run: There will be one preseason waiver run on Wednesday, September 9 at 2:00 CST, which is the day before the NFL season opener. After the bids have processed, all remaining players on the waiver wire will be available on a first-come-first-serve (FCFS) basis.

In-Season Waiver Runs: After Week 1 results are finalized, Week 2 begins. There are two weekly waiver periods, running from Week 2 through Week 13 of the NFL regular season (there are no free agent transactions allowed from Week 14 through 16). The weekly waiver deadlines (in the aforementioned period of Week 2 through 13) are every Wednesday and Thursday by 2:00 PM CST. Players dropped during the Wednesday waiver period will be available for bidding in the Thursday run, but any players dropped during the Thursday waiver period (or after), will not be available until the following week's waiver periods.

Injured Reserve

There are no designated roster spots for injured or suspended players.

Trades

Trading players is not permitted in contest leagues, but may be allowed in a private leagues, depending on the settings used by your commissioner.

Restricted States

Residents of the following states are unable to participate in Guillotine Leagues this year:

  • Arkansas
  • Arizona
  • Delaware
  • Hawaii
  • Iowa
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Louisiana
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • Mississippi
  • Montana
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • Tennessee
  • Virginia
  • Vermont
  • Washington