How to Enjoy NFL Football with a Family Game

How to Enjoy NFL Football with a Family Game

Do you enjoy watching football, but don’t know enough to play Fantasy Football? Don’t have time to keep up with a fantasy league? Or maybe you don’t want to deal with the league buy-in that’s a little too expensive for me when I have absolutely no control over how the players play? Then this is perfect for you!

The first football season that I was with Justin, he showed me the game that he and his family have been playing for years together. It’s really a simple way to make guesses on the teams that will win, and have a little friendly competition with your friends and/or family. Rather than having to keep track of all the individuals players, you are only choosing between the two teams in a game.

How to Enjoy NFL Football with a Family Game

Playing this game has made me enjoy watching football a little more because I have a little more invested in it. I love the math behind trying to figure out who is closest to winning and who still has a chance. Sometimes after the morning games on Sunday we already have an idea on who is out, and who can still come back, depending on the numbers and choices everyone makes.

Below you can find a downloadable excel spreadsheet that you can use to create your own game. You can have anywhere from two players to as many as you want! I think one year we had 8 or 9 people playing in one game. I got my family to do it once as well, so that year Justin and I had two different games going.


It’s simple to set up. Open the spreadsheet and change the top row to have all the individual players names across the top (it should auto-fill the rest of the weeks as well). Then fill in the schedule down the left side. I usually go to NFL.com to look up the schedule. Once you have it all filled out (see the image at the left), email the spreadsheet to everyone who is playing this season. If you choose to print it, the file is set up to print each week on it’s own page. I just fill it out on the computer to save paper.

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Once you email it to everyone involved, wait until the first week of the season. Each week, before the first game starts, everyone needs to email each other with their picks for the week. Fill in your copy of the spreadsheet, and then wait for the games to start.

After a game has finished, highlight the winner on the list, then highlight across for anyone who has chosen that team. At the end of the week, add up the total number of wins each person has. Whoever chose the most games correctly wins for the week.

EXCEPTION: The last game of the week (usually the Monday night game for most weeks) is a tie-breaker. So this game doesn’t count towards the total, unless it is needed. Then only those who are tied after Sunday night count for the final game. Each player must also choose a total number of points that they think the last game will have. If there is still a tie after the Monday game based on teams, then it goes to points. Whoever is closest, without going over, is the winner!

For example, in the image above, the game between SD and DEN is the tie-breaker game. Once the NO/MIN game is over, if there is no tie, then whoever has the most total wins is the winner for the week. In the event there is a tie, then it goes to the choice for the SD/DEN game. Say Player1 and Player2 are tied for the most wins before the last game, then it goes to the tie-breaker game. If they chose different teams, then whichever team wins determines the winner. On the other hand, if they both chose the same team, it goes down to points. For instance, if Player1 guesses 35 points and Player2 guesses 47 points, and the game ends with a total combined points of 45 then Player1 wins because they were closest without going over. If the game ended at 49 points, then Player2 wins because they were closest.

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Football Game Template
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How to Enjoy NFL Football with a Family Game How to Enjoy NFL Football with a Family Game

16 thoughts on “How to Enjoy NFL Football with a Family Game

  1. This might help, but I really love eating snacks and talking in the other room. I am about to have a second boy so I might need to try something like this.

    1. I grew up watching baseball, not football, so didn’t know much about it until I met my husband who loves it. This was a way for me to stay interested with him while we watched games together.

  2. That is a great idea! I am from Spain, when I moved to the states it was hard for me to get Footbal… It took me a few games hehe this is a great way for kids and no kids to enjoy it!

  3. I’ve never understood Football! But every time I watch with my friends and family, I get so into it! It’s definitely a family game, love the energy when people are rooting for their team.

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