What is Fan Controlled Football?

The Fan Controlled Football league is growing quickly, but what is the FCF league, what are the rules, and which big names are involved?

The Fan Controlled Football (FCF) league began playing games in 2021, after having been officially founded in 2017. It is an indoor football league made up of eight teams where the aim is to complete each game within an hour. The idea of the Fan Controlled Football league is to provide a condensed version of football that is fast-paced and immersive for fans. Let’s take a look at some of the finer details of the FCF league.

What is Fan Controlled Football?

The idea of Fan Controlled Football began all the way back in 2008. At that point, the concept was to have a fan-controlled baseball team. However, with costs proving prohibitive, the project began with the purchase of an expansion team in the Indoor Football League. The group behind the project, led by Grant Cohen, created a mobile app where fans could vote on the team name, colors, and coach.

The result was the Salt Lake Screaming Eagles, where fans also chose plays for the team to run. The Screaming Eagles played their first season in the 2017 Indoor Football League. However, while they proved that fans could control a football team, they finished 5-11, meaning the fun element did not translate to a successful team on the field. That would be the Eagles’ only season, as they folded following their first year.

In April 2017, it was reported that the group planned to launch its own league, known as the “Interactive Football League”. The league rebranded as the “Electronic Football League” before settling on the name Fan Controlled Football. The aim was to launch the league in 2018, with all of the games hosted in Las Vegas. However, this was postponed.

The league eventually began in Feb. 2021 with four teams playing 12 games over six weeks. All of the games were held in the Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth, Georgia, in Feb. and March 2021. The second season of the FCF league began on April 16, with the league expanding to eight teams.

Who are the teams in Fan Controlled Football, and who owns them?

The second season of the FCF league sees eight teams taking part. Four of those are expansion teams, three teams remain from season 1, and the “Shoulda Been Stars” team is a reorganized and rebranded team from the 2021 champions — the Wild Aces who folded after Greg Miller left the team. Another two teams are set to join the FCF league, but the date that they will join has not been confirmed. Here is the list of teams playing in the 2022 FCF league:

  • Beasts
    Joined: 2020
  • Glacier Boyz
    Joined: 2020
  • Zappers
    Joined: 2020
  • 8oki Football Club
    Joined: 2022
  • Knights of Degen
    Joined: 2022
  • Bored Ape Football Club
    Joined: 2022
  • Kingpins
    Joined: 2022
  • Shoulda Been Stars
    Joined: 2022

The ownership groups across the various teams are intriguing. Former and current NFL players such as Marshawn Lynch, Richard Sherman, Dalvin Cook, Austin Ekeler, Jamal Anderson, Tiki Barber, and Ronde Barber all appear on the list of co-owners of the various teams.

Additionally, the likes of Miro, Quavo, Trevor May, Steve Aoki, Cynthia Frelund, Rachel Lindsay, and Druski, are all recognizable names that are listed as co-owners of the teams.

Who are the most high-profile players in the FCF league?

In the first season, the two most high-profile players were Johnny Manziel and Josh Gordon. Both have played multiple games in the NFL, and Gordon would go on to play for the Chiefs in the 2021 season following his time playing for the Zappers. They were joined in 2022 by Pro Football Hall of Fame WR Terrell Owens, who joined the Knights of Degen in 2022

According to a report by Reuters, the latest high-profile player to join the league is Michael Vick. However, Vick took to Twitter to deny this rumor.

What are the format and rules for the FCF league?

There are several unique elements to the Fan Controlled Football league. Firstly, the game is 7-on-7 with three players on the offensive line. There is a running clock, and fans call the plays in real-time through the immersive app.

The structure of the teams is slightly different in FCF than we are used to in NFL or other forms of football. While teams have two franchise players and can select one keeper, the rest of the team is decided in a live draft every Wednesday. Like the play-calling, fans can vote for which player each team selects. Defensive and offensive lines are drafted as a group. Franchise players can be drafted with a supermajority of fans.

In terms of the rules, there are plenty of interesting areas. Each half is 20 minutes with six minutes for halftime and a 10-minute overtime period. The clock runs continuously other than the last 30 seconds of each half and the overtime period. In overtime, each team gets at least one possession. The leader after that is the winner, with sudden death after that. Rock, paper, scissors replaces the coin toss, and there is no kicking or punting.

Each offensive series starts on the 10-yard line unless there is a turnover. The onside-conversion option sees teams have one attempt to gain 10 yards in order to retain possession. Two-point conversions see one WR and DB go head-to-head from the 5-yard line with QBs having 3.5 seconds to throw the ball. A one-point conversion takes place from the 10-yard line.

What are the power-ups used in Fan Controlled Football?

One of the more unique elements of Fan Controlled Football is that each team can utilize three power-ups. Here is what each one does:

Fifth Down
Somewhat self-explanatory in that the offense gets an extra play to avoid turning the ball over on downs.

Flip the Field
Moves the ball back to the 10-yard of the offensive team.

Power Play
Forces the opposing team to play with just six players for the next play.

Ben Rolfe is a Senior Managing Editor at Pro Football Network and is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA). You can find him on Twitter @BenRolfePFN


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