What Is A Devy League

What is a Devy League?

A devy league is a specific form of a dynasty league which allows owners to draft and roster developmental players, often referred to as “devys.” These developmental players are most often college players, although some leagues even make current high school players available for their participants to roster.

How did devy leagues begin?

This is somewhat difficult to pin down, but as best as we can tell, our own Scott Fish developed the first devy league around 1999 after an extensive search for leagues that included college players. When he concluded leagues like this did not exist, Scott began to form his own dynasty leagues, allowing owners to draft pre-NFL players that would be placed on a “farm team.” In the years that have followed, Scott has created many other devy leagues, as has DLF senior writer Steve Wyremski, whose Backyard Brawl leagues introduced many dynasty owners to the devy format.

What is the difference between a devy league and a dynasty league? 

A devy league is just one form of a dynasty league. Devy leagues are, by definition, also dynasty leagues since all players (especially devy players) are kept from year to year. Once drafted, a devy player remains property of that team until they enter the NFL. At that time, the player automatically is part of that same team’s active roster and will not be part of the rookie draft.

How do devys affect the rookie draft? 

This is probably the biggest concern about new owners beginning a devy league. Of course, if teams are drafting the top college players in advance of their NFL rookie season, they are not available to be part of the rookie draft. This process can slightly “water down” the rookie draft and, as a result, devalue the rookie picks. The good news is there are always players who unexpectedly break out and gain value in their final season of college and these players would be available to be chosen in rookie drafts. If this is a concern for you and your league, I would suggest allowing only one devy player to be rostered per team, per season.

How many devys are available?

This varies from league to league. Many leagues only have a one round devy draft, meaning each year there are between ten and fourteen new devy players being added to teams, based on the number of teams in the league. Some leagues only allow each team to roster one devy player at a time – this means when a player makes the decision to return to school rather than enter the NFL Draft, the dynasty team would have the choice of keeping that player or letting them go and choosing a new player. Other leagues have very deep devy systems, with several players, even up to 20 devy players rostered per team. This type of a league is a specialty for DLF’s own Scott Fish.

How do devys affect scoring?

Devy players do not affect scoring, as they are not eligible to be an active member of your team. Most leagues use a Taxi Squad to hold the devy players until the time comes that they enter the NFL. Once a player has gone through the NFL draft process and is now an active member of the league, they are usually removed from the taxi squad and placed on the team’s active roster.

How can devys be acquired?

In most leagues, devy players can be drafted or traded like any other player, though it is very rare a devy player can be added via waivers. It is highly unlikely a devy player would be dropped from a roster, since they are often held on a taxi squad until they reach the NFL. Many leagues hold drafts specifically and exclusively for devy players, while others include the devy players along with rookies in their annual draft. Either method is acceptable, though including devys and rookies in the same draft can make for some challenging and unique decisions.

Where can I find information on devys?

Here at DLF and now with our new division of Dynasty Scouts, we hope to become your comprehensive source of all information related to these pre-NFL players. In the coming weeks and months, you’ll find devy rankings, mock drafts, player profiles of both college and high school players, game previews and reviews and much, much more.

In addition to the content we’ll provide, the best thing you can do to prepare for your devy or rookie draft is to simply watch as much football as possible.  One other resource to use is the annual recruiting rankings of incoming college freshmen. There are now multiple sites where player rankings can be found, but it’s important to remember that these rankings are based on the expectations of individuals as college athletes, not necessarily a prediction of how they will fare as NFL players, or even if they will eventually make the NFL.

How can I find a devy league?

The popularity of devy leagues are growing and like other, more traditional dynasty leagues, can be found at the DLF Help Wanted forum. This is the primary place to begin looking for any dynasty leagues, including the devy variety. Also, if you are active on Twitter, new leagues are often advertised and formed through conversations held there. Finally, don’t be afraid to start your own devy league. There will be an abundance of resources featured on Dynasty Scouts and DLF from some of the top devy players around and we’ll be glad to guide you on the best ways to take on a new devy league.

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