After the Draft, you'll sign undrafted free agents, and veteran free agency continues. During the off-season, your roster limit is 90 players (just as it is the real NFL teams.)
But before the season starts in September, you have to trim your roster, first to 75, then to the regular season limit of 53. After the cut to 53, you'll form your Practice Squad of eight players.
Your team will play a full 16-game schedule against real NFL teams. Your specific schedule will depend on which NFL team you choose as your "base team" when you start you own virtual team - you will play the same schedule that team plays.
During the season, you'll continue to actively manage your roster as players are injured or cut in real life. Sign free agents off the street, poach other teams' Practice Squads, and promote players from your own Practice Squad.
Scoring in iGMTM is very different than in traditional fantasy games. Our system is based on a brilliant (and complex!) algorithm called "Approximate Value" - or "AV" - developed by the folks at Pro-Football-Reference.com. You can read a general description of AV here, or get the down and dirty details here. A detailed description of how scoring in iGM works is here.
This innovative algorithm allows us to give every player - even offensive linemen - a score on a weekly basis. We then apply our weighting system (your starting QB counts more than your third OG, for example,) and generate team scores for both your team and the NFL team you are facing in a given week.
We then translate these team scores into realistic NFL scores, like 24-17, and present your game in a simple but suspenseful way.
Your team will accumulate wins and losses, and, if you make the playoffs, you'll keep playing as long as you keep winning. We even had a handful of virtual teams that won the Super Bowl following the 2013 season!
In iGMTM, you're competing with the 32 real-life NFL General Managers for players. There are no unrealistic Peyton Manning for Drew Brees trades. There is no taking advantage of weaker league members with unfair trades like can happen in traditional fantasy football.
You're competing with the pros - with the people who get paid to build successful NFL teams. And, you're being measured against them every week during the season.
The biggest difference between running a virtual team in our iGMTM game and being a real NFL General Manager is that you can't be fired!
There IS no catch!
Nah, not really. Of course there's a catch. We do have to eat around here.
Running your team is free forever. When you get to the regular season, every iGM team has their bye week the first week of the season. This lets us store an extra week of stats, so we'll have them when your players actually do start having bye weeks in real life.
You'll see the suspenseful slow reveal of your first two games during weeks two and three of the NFL's regular season. You'll see your team's place in the standings, too.
But, starting with your third game, you'll stop seeing results, unless you're a premium member.
Premium memberships are only $99/year, and come with a wide range of other benefits in addition to allowing your team to compete.