How Many Rounds Are in a Fantasy Football Draft, and How Long Does it Take?

How Many Rounds Are in a Fantasy Football Draft, and How Long Does it Take?


If you're new to fantasy football and your draft is coming up, you're probably wondering what to expect. Plenty of your questions will revolve around best draft strategies and specific strategy for your draft position, but some of the questions will be even more basic.

One topic that gets asked about a lot is how much time you should expect to set aside for your draft. That will depend on a few factors, but we've got you covered with answers.

How Many Rounds Are in a Fantasy Football Draft?

The number of rounds in your fantasy football draft are going to totally depend your specific league settings, but there are some common themes and default settings on different website that will help give you a general idea.

Here are the default number of rounds in a fantasy football draft on some of the most popular sites:

  • Yahoo!: 15 rounds
  • ESPN: 16 rounds
  • CBS: 14 rounds
  • 15 rounds

Of course, the only way to know for sure if your league has a default draft length is to check the settings. You won't typically find an exact answer to "number of draft rounds," but the length of the draft will be equal to the number of players that will be on a full team roster. This includes your starters at every position plus your number of bench spots.

How Long Does a Fantasy Football Draft Take?

As with the number of rounds, how long a fantasy football draft takes will depend on your specific league settings (including the number of rounds).

Almost any online draft will have a maximum time limit set for each pick. This can range anywhere from 15 seconds to 2 minutes. Most leagues will allot somewhere from 1 to 2 minutes per pick.

This means that the maximum time one of these drafts can take would be equal to the pick time limit multiplied by the number of teams and number of rounds. So a 12-team league on Yahoo! with a 15-round draft and a one-minute pick timer could take up to 3 hours (12 teams * 15 rounds * 1 minute = 180 minutes).

But if everyone in your league is taking the maximum time to make every single pick, someone is probably going to get mad and leave before the draft ends.

Realistically, with some people auto-drafting and many picks being made within a few seconds of the draft timer going, you can typically expect a 12-team draft with a default number of rounds to take somewhere in the range of 90 minutes to two hours.

Fantasy Football Draft Advice

With some of the basics on draft timing down, now you're ready to figure out who you're drafting. Check out some of the stories below from The Duel:

  • Fantasy Football Rankings
  • 10 Best Fantasy Football Sleepers to Win Your League
  • 60 Best Fantasy Football Team Names

New users earn an instant FREE entry when you sign up for FanDuel DFS! Sign Up Now!

Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.