Win free Bears gear, other prizes with fantasy leagues

Wanna get a free Chicago Bears jersey?

OR how about some tickets to an upcoming game?

Daily fantasy sports are basically your chance to see if that dream team could actually win games based on the players’ real stats while risking and sometimes winning real money.

You don’t even have to worry if somebody in your fantasy league wants the same player as you because draft picks are done completely independently. If you want to get a feel for how this works before you actually risk your hard-earned money, try some of the free options so you don’t get burned right out of the gate.

How do Fantasy League Sports Work?

Fantasy LeagueIt all starts by choosing not only your sport, but also your fantasy league. When you’re serious about doing well at fantasy sports, you need to stay realistic and do your homework on each online league.

Use promo codes if you can find them. FanDuel and DraftKings are two good leagues to join. Choose a fantasy contest with a low or free buy-in.

If you’re new at this, you might want to stick to the beginners-only contests and avoid the highly advanced Head-2-Head contests until you get a good feel for it. Draft your team while making sure to stay under the salary cap. You can change, add and remove players until you save your team, and then you’re in the running.

Be sure to read up on the types of contests that are available. While you’re still getting comfortable at this but have gotten the hang of the beginners only contests, you might try a 10 person tournament in which the top three walk away with the prize money or a 10+ person league that could involve a few dozen players.

Experienced players tend to do best at big field tournaments and large prize guarantees that could involve thousands of players during the sports season on the popular sites. But don’t lose too much sleep over this, there are easier tournaments you can join if you are still getting the hang of it.

If you want to reduce your risk, you might try a 50/50 or double-up game in which you double your buy-in if you can beat half the field. Just watch out for the clever players on this game and never bet more than you’re comfortable with. If you hate the salary caps, you might try the “pick ’em” games in which you simply pick the best player for each position from an available field.

You could also try buying “shares” in a player in which you’re basically betting on their future performance in the hope of selling high. It’s like the stock market for fantasy sports leagues.

When starting out with daily fantasy sports, it pays to start small and especially check out some strategy guides. Keep in mind that each site is likely to score results differently, so you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the system of any new site you join to make sure you don’t get burned by a different system.

This may wind up becoming a rather sharp reality check on what your dream team is like if you’re not careful. However, if you make wise choices, you can actually do pretty well with fantasy sports.

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