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TBD Sim League: Rules and Regulations


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#1 R. Rich

R. Rich

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Posted 13 March 2008 - 05:22 PM

[originally posted Apr 25 2007, 05:31 PM ]

PART ONE

1.0 – MEMBERSHIP REQUIREMENTS

1.1 - All members must make a dedicated effort to meet all league deadlines and make a commitment to making the league flow as easy as possible. The league will be played on the Action PC Football platform.

1.1a - Owners must make an effort to post in the forums both during and after the season is over. This is a long-term league, normally an hour or two a week during the season, and an hour or less during the offseason is all thats required.

1.2 - All owners are responsible for making adjustments to their roster by 9 PM Friday night. All games will be simmed on Saturday or Sunday of each week.

1.3 - All members are encouraged to contribute to the league's forum, contributing news items, essays, a team logo or anything else remotely interesting.

1.4 - All owners will play within the spirit of the rules as laid out in this document. Any attempt to circumvent the rules, find loopholes or in any way just piss off the commissioner will result in expulsion from the league.

2.0 - THE LEAGUE OFFICE

2.1 - The Commissioner (R. Rich) oversees the operation of the league. He is responsible for ruling on any differences between league members and shall be the final authority on all rule issues. He is responsible for conducting and scheduling the drafts, dispersing the league's information and updating and revising the rulebook as necessary.

2.2 - The League Council (BlueFire, Ramius, and a third member to be determined later) is a three-member panel that will review applications for rule changes.

2.3 - The rulebook may not be altered except by amendment, or to codify or clarify procedures already in place.

2.4 - At the end of each season, owners are encouraged to suggest any changes and/or clarifications to the rulebook via the forum. Any amendment getting the support of the League Council be place before the membership for a vote. Any amendment placed before the membership for a vote that gets a simple majority of owners voting is adopted into the rulebook for the next season or the season beyond.

2.5 - The Contracts Secretary (R. Rich, or an owner designated by him) is responsible for collecting all contract decisions by owners, insuring owners meet the rules and guidelines stated herein, and reporting these decisions to the commissioner and Stats Secretary by the stated deadlines. The Commissioner and Contracts Secretary are also responsible for maintaining the master list of contracted players and ensuring all trades comply with salary cap rules, etc.

2.6 - The tenure of commissioner is for life.



PART TWO

4.0 - LEAGUE STRUCTURE

4.1 - The league is comprised of 24 (w/ the possibility of expanding) teams divided into the Jim Kelly Conference and the Cookie Gilchrist Conference. The Kelly Conference includes the Thurman Thomas, Kent Hull and Bruce Smith Divisions while the Gilchrist Conference includes the Billy Shaw, Mike Stratton, and Joe Cribbs Divisions. The assignment of teams within a division will be based on the geographic location of the city/NFL stadium each franchise uses for its home games. Divisions will look like something like this depending on the number of owners:

JIM KELLY CONFERENCE
Thomas DIVISION: Midwest Region
Hull DIVISION: Northeast Region
Smith DIVISION: Central Region

COOKIE GILCHRIST CONFERENCE
Shaw DIVISION: Pacific Region
Stratton DIVISION: Southwest Region
Cribbs DIVISION: Northeast Region

4.2 - While it is our goal to maintain a stable 24-30 team league sometimes team numbers may fluctuate. In the event that they do the commissioners office reserves the right to alter conference/division layouts.

5.0 - FRANCHISES

5.1 - Owners are responsible for selecting a name and stadium for their teams.

5.2 - Each team consists of a 53-man active roster and a rookie squad, which cannot exceed 14 rookies from the date of the rookie draft until the Final Cut Down date, generally a week or two prior to beginning of the next TBD Sim League season. The rookie squad may not exceed 14 rookies on or after the Final Cut Down date.

5.3 - The active roster can only contain players listed on the player disk with the exception of a contracted player who is injured or suspended for all the previous NFL year. Said player must remain assigned to the team under his existing contract as stated herein and his contract will count against the team's cap as stated below. These contracted/no-play players do not count as 1 of the 53 players on the active roster but their salaries do count against the cap.

5.4 - The rookie squad can consist only of players taken in that year's NFL college draft.



PART THREE

6.0 - ROSTER REQUIREMENTS

6.1 - Players eligible for play within the league shall be players listed in the current version of Action! PC Football for that season.

6.2 - At the start of each season, each owner must have at least the following number of attempts, incurred in the previous NFL season by skilled players, on their rosters:

a. 400 pass attempts
b. 300 rushes
c. 200 receptions
d. 20 field goal attempts
e. 30 punts
f. 10 kick off returns
g. 10 punt returns

6.3 - At the start of each game, each roster must include 53 players including the following minimum number of players at the following positions:

2 QBs
2 RBs
1 FB
4 Rec
1 TE
7 OL (minimum 1C, 2OTs and 2OGs)
1 PK
1 Punter
6 Def Linemen (min of 2DTs and 2DEs)
6 LBs (minimum 1 ILB and 2 OLBs)
7 DBS (minimum 2CBs and 2Ss)
1 KR
1 PR
1 LS
1 Holder

H backs can be used as TEs or RBs.

Players that are used at multiple positions, as assigned by the game, can count toward two requirements. For example a QB/Holder would fit the holder requirement.

The purpose of this rule is to make sure that minimum requirements are met for each team but also increase the flexibility teams have in constructing their 53-man roster, especially given the Action! PC game has positions for holders, long snappers and special team gunners.

6.4 - Player Usage: The computer software will determine the extent of each player's usage given it automatically factors in durability, over usage, injury, etc. and the league rulebook requires rosters to have a minimum number of attempts at the skilled positions.

6.5 - Teams that do not comply with Rule 6 roster requirements will be penalized $1 million at the end of the draft period for next season's draft for each infraction, and the league office will assign players to team rosters that are not in compliance with rule requirements. Players will be assigned by alphabetical listing of free agents at the given position and players will be cut on the basis of the lowest salaried player and then by alphabetical order. Teams that make no reasonable attempt to comply with the roster requirements will risk expulsion from the league.


PART FOUR


7.0 - ROOKIE DRAFTS

7.1 - Only players appearing on the Action! PC Football disk are eligible to be drafted during the free agent draft.

7.2 – The rookie draft will occur each on a date or dates selected by the commissioner.

7.3 - During live drafts, all owners are responsible for being in the draft room at the specified time and date. If an owner is not in the room at the time of his pick, the league will have the computer make the pick. During the initial draft, if an owner does not make his pick by the prescribed time, the pick will be forfeited at the end of the day in order that the rest of the draft may proceed without delay.

7.4 - Obviously, an owner may have someone (either a mod or commish) else make a pick for him if he is unable to be present.

7.5 - In the initial year draft, there will be a random order of selection for league teams.

7.5a - In all future years: All non-playoff teams will be ranked on the following tie-breaking factors:

a. winning percentage
b. head-to-head
c. division wins
d. conference wins
e. net points
f. coin toss

7.5b - The non-playoff teams will be ranked based on the tie breaking factors noted above.

7.5c - The playoff teams will be ranked based on the reverse order of where they finished in the playoffs. Playoffs teams, which finished at the same level, will use the tie breaking factors to determine order. Therefore, the Super Bowl winner drafts last, etc.

7.6 - Cut down day is approximately two weeks prior to the rookie draft. Rosters must be trimmed to the number of players and the total salaries defined in Rule 15.1. All contracts are to be announced by this date or the owner loses his rights to the team.

7.7 - On cut down day, each owner must decide whether to activate any players from his prior year's rookie squad or release them into the free agency pool for the upcoming free agent draft. Activated rookies will be assigned a salary based on the round they were drafted in under the following scale:

Round 1 - $1.0m
Round 2 - $500k
Round 3 - $400k
Round 4 - $300k
Round 5 - $200k
Round 6-8 - $100k

7.8 - Each draft will proceed in the same order for every round until the draft is completed.

7.9 - The rookie draft will precede the free agent draft and proceed in the same manner as the free agent draft with the exception that college players drafted in the rookie draft will not have a salary assigned to them that counts against the cap in the year they are drafted.

7.10 - All owners are responsible for keeping track of their team's total salary during the draft. During the draft, the league will also track each team's salary cap. If any owner exceeds the salary cap limits, the owner will lose the fewest number of free agent players just drafted necessary to get under that salary cap maximum limit. For example, if an owner goes $200,000 over the cap, he will lose two $100,000 players. If he goes $1 million over the cap, he will lose one $1 million dollar player. The last player chosen in the draft at the required salary range will be the first player released.

7.11 - Any player automatically released due to the infraction described in Rule 7.12 above may not be re-acquired by the same owner as a free agent during the remainder of the season.

7.12 - If a new owner inherits a team from an owner who incurred salary cap penalties for any reason, those penalties will be eliminated.

7.13 - Trading is not allowed between Cut down Day and Draft Day. Trading may resume the split second the free agent draft ends.

7.14 - The Rookie Draft Picks are limited to NFL rookies actually selected in that year's NFL draft as well as the supplemental draft.

7.15 - All teams are assigned 1 pick per each of the 8 rounds in the rookie draft as allowed under rule 7.7.

7.16 - Draft choices may be acquired by trade, and teams may draft as many rookies as they have draft choices.

7.17 - Once the draft ends, teams may trade the rights to any drafted rookie if they so choose.


PART FIVE


8.0 - TRADES

8.1 - The deadline for all trades is six days prior to the next scheduled game.

8.2 - Trades can have a maximum of 4 players/picks per side in any combination. If the teams wish to trade further they must wait 10 days between trades. (this prevents trades involving 10 different players or picks, as well as preventing two teams from simply creating multiple trades back to back it also makes it easier to make trading a little more fair by not allowing owners to spread value out over 7-8 different picks and players)


8.3 - No trading will be allowed between the preliminary Cut Down Day and the end of the free agent auction. (Picks are allowed but not players)

8.4 - Any trade may be vetoed by the commissioner, if, in his judgment, the trade is not in the best interest of the league.

8.5 - Players may be traded for other players or for draft picks. No money (real or fantasy) or players to be named later or other gimmicks or loopholes will be allowed.

8.6 - One manager should submit the unofficial trade to the commissioner and the other manager will confirm the trade. The trade will become official when the commissioner confirms and posts the trade on the forum page. If the forum is not functioning, the same process will take place by email and the commissioner will confirm the trade to all league members via email and/or via the transaction page.

8.7 - Teams may discuss trades at any time after the season trading deadline but trades can only be made official and final during trading periods.

8.8 - Trades for Rookie draft picks may only be made 1 year in advance. Ex: Before the 2007 draft, trades may include picks in the 2007 draft and 2008 draft.

Team 1 trades its 2007 1st round pick to Team 2 for its 2008 4th round pick.

9.0 - WAIVER CLAIM FREE AGENTS

9.1 - Once the season starts, any player appearing on the most recent Action! PC Football disk that does not appear on any team's 50-man roster is considered a potential waiver claim free agent.

9.2 - Waiver Claims close at the start of the regular season and do not re-open until the next scheduled FA draft.

9.3 - After the first week of play, Waiver Claim Free Agents will be awarded based on the previous season's standings, with the poorest team drafting first, etc. After the second week of play, Waiver Claim Free agents will be awarded based upon each teams current:

a. winning percentage
b. head-to-head
c. division wins
d. conference wins
e. net points
f. power rankings

(This rule will be decided before the start of each season)

9.4 - Teams are limited to obtaining a maximum of two waiver wire free agents each week. Before each deadline, each owner should submit a list in order of preference of any number of waiver wire free agents he wishes to choose and the 2 players he wishes to release from his active roster. Transaction requests should be emailed to the transaction secretary and commissioner. Any owner who fails to post a list by the deadline forfeits his right to participate in the waiver claim process for that week.

9.5 - There is a 24-hour period directly following the transaction deadline where owners may appeal any decisions made by the Transaction Secretary. No appeals may be made after the deadline has expired.



PART SIX


10. - SCHEDULES

10.1 - The regular season will consist of 16 games.

10.2 - Each team will be assigned an abbreviated ID for the schedule based on the Division (Thomas, Smith, Hull, Shaw, Stratton, and Cribbs) and the place where they finished within the division. In the first year, teams will be assigned a divisional number. Once all teams have been assigned, a complete schedule with team names will be published. The schedule will require everyone to play home and away games against divisional foes and allow for interconference play. The schedule will rotate every year so that each team will face every team in the league at least once every three years (assuming no movement from division to division due to stadium changes).

10.3 – For play with a 24 team league each team will play the three teams in their division 2 times. Each first place team will play the first place team from each division and the second place team from the two divisions in their conference.

12.0 - PLAYOFFS

12.1 - The three divisional champions in each conference and three wild card teams with the top winning percentages of the remaining conference teams qualify for the playoffs. The teams will be ranked by record with the wild card team being 4th - 6th.

12.2 - Given the league relies on the software to prevent overuse of players, injuries will carry over throughout the regular season, the playoffs and the Super Bowl.

12.3 - The Super Bowl will be played on a neutral field. The field will be chosen by a majority vote of team owners out of 2 fields nominated by the commissioner. In the case of a tie, a coin flip will determine the field.

12.4 - No site will be used for 2 consecutive Super Bowls.


PART SEVEN

13.0 - STADIUMS

13.1 - Each team will select a home stadium from an existing NFL stadium.

13.2 - A team must play in the same stadium for a minimum of 3 years absent a change in the team owner.

13.3 - If a NFL team moves to a new stadium, the owner can either select the new stadium or participate in the annual stadium draft.

13. 4 - The name and weather effects of the given NFL stadium will be used during the TBD Sim League season.

13.5 - A yearly stadium draft will be held for new owners and those owners eligible to select a new stadium. The order of the draft will follow the same criteria used to determine the draft order for the free agent and rookie draft.

13.6 - You are not required to change stadiums.

14.0 - SALARY CAP

14.1 - A strict salary cap shall be set at $95 million for each team. This number may rise yearly.

14.2 - Players drafted in the college draft and placed on the rookie squad do not have a salary while on the rookie squad, as they are drafted one year prior to first playing in the league. Therefore, rookie salaries do not count against the $95 million cap. At the end of the season following their draft, rookies become the property of their teams, and their salaries count against the cap.

14.3 You can't have more than the capped rate ($95 million the first season) in present-day salary during the current season in play. After your first season cuts are made to get down to the 35 man (+rookies/2 RFA) your salary pre-FA cannot be more than $70 million.

15.0 - PROTECTIONS

15.1 - A team must protect a minimum of twenty but not more then 35 (+ rookies and RFA) players from the previous season at a total combined salary of not more than 70 million. Rookie salaries do not count the year they are drafted.

15.2 - If a team is unable to protect the minimum number of players as defined in 15.1, the team will be penalized $1 million from the salary cap for each player under the minimum.

15.3 - Any player whose contract has not expired must be protected except as noted in Rule 16.10

15.4 - All rookies from the preceding year must be signed to their option year rookie salary or be released into the free agent pool.



PART EIGHT

*Note. This is probably the most complicated area of the league but you will be given a spreadsheet with formulas and such plugged in to help.

16.0 - CONTRACTS AND SALARIES

16.1 - A player's initial salary is determined by the manner in which the player was acquired.

16.2 - Players acquired through the Free Agent draft (either inaugural or subsequent) are assigned an option year salary as follows:

Inaugural Draft:
Round 1: 10 million
Rounds 2-3: 7.5 million
Rounds 4-6: 5 million
Rounds 7-9: 4 million
Rounds 10-15: 3 million
Rounds 16-20: 2 million
Rounds 21-25: 1 million
Rounds 26-30: 500K
Rounds 31-36: 300K
Rounds 37-45: 200K
Rounds 46-??: 100K

Subsequent Free Agent Drafts:
Round 1: 10 million
Rounds 2-3: 7.5 million
Rounds 4-6: 5 million
Rounds 7-9: 4 million
Rounds 10-12: 3 million
Rounds 13-17 2 million
Rounds 18-22 1 million
Rounds 23-27 500K
Rounds 28-32 300K
Rounds 33-?? 100K

16.3 - There are 3 types of players on a league roster:

a. contract players under contract (identified as 'VET' on the team contract page)
b. Option year players playing in their option year ('FA' or '03 Rookie')
c. Rookie players drafted in the college draft with no salary ('04 Rookie')

16.3a – After completion of the first league season teams can resign no less than 20 and no more than 35 of the players + rookies drafted in the inaugural draft.

16.4a - No rookie free agents can be acquired during any season. The only way to acquire a rookie is via a trade with another owner who has drafted the given rookie.

As for future rookie drafts, all future rookie drafts will be held for 8 rounds. Salaries will be assigned as follows:

Round 1 - $1.0m
Round 2 - $500k
Round 3 - $400k
Round 4 - $300k
Round 5 - $200k
Round 6-8 - $100k

Said salaries will go into effect the year following the rookie draft.

The Preliminary Cut Down Day will occur on a date to be announced by the commissioner (generally late April or early May), before the next rookie and free agent drafts and league owners will have to either place the prior year's drafted rookies on their active rosters or release them into the free agent pool.

Owners are not required to carry any minimum number of rookies on their rookie squad but the maximum number may not exceed 14 after the Final Cutdown Date immediately prior to the beginning of the season.

Players eligible for the annual rookie draft will be those players actually selected in the NFL draft that year. The rookie draft will be held on a date or dates announced by the commissioner, generally in early-May.

16.4b - A Player's option year salary expires at the end of the season in which his option year began. The league owner has three options, which he may exercise between the end of the season and the preliminary cutdown date:

a. Release the player into the free agent draft
b. Sign the player to a multi-year contract or
c. Sign the player to a one-year contract at the same initial salary + 20%.

16.5 - Players signed to a contract will automatically become free agents at the expiration of their contracts, unless the Free Agent Tender Offer is invoked, which works as follows:

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Free Agent Tender Offer - Allows teams to keep select veterans whose contract has expired (effective following 2005 league season):

16.5a - This rule only applies to players who have been signed to contracts of 3 years or more, who will be called "eligible players".

16.5b - When the contract of one of these eligible players is up, and the player would otherwise re-enter the free agent pool as an unrestricted free agent, the team that owned his contract is allowed to make a "tender offer" to no more than 2 of these eligible players in a given year. If a tender offer is made, the player then becomes a restricted free agent.

16.5c - The tender offer must be made the same day that the team submits its final roster cuts and contracts to the league.

16.5d - The tender offer is the dollar amount that the team is willing to sign the eligible player to a contract (10 million, 7.5 million, 5 million, etc.). Or, put another way, the tender offer is the dollar amount corresponding to the round in which the team declares they would pick the player (10 million - 1st round; 7.5 million - 2nd round; 5 million - 4th round; etc).

16.5e - The restricted free agent then becomes eligible to be taken during the free agent draft by any team willing to pay more than the tender offer price.

16.5f - Once the original team makes the tender offer, it cannot be taken back. The team making the offer will automatically keep the restricted free agent (or agents) at the tender offer amount, unless another team drafts the player at a higher dollar amount.

16.5g - For purposes of salary cap configuration, an accepted tender offer will be treated as if the team that made the offer drafted the restricted free agent in the corresponding round (Example - a 7.5 million accepted offer is treated as if the player was taken in the 2nd round; a 5 million accepted offer is treated as if the player was taken in the 4th round, etc.)

16.5h - No team can make a tender offer that, if accepted, would put their combined salaries over the $95 million cap. The cap will go up each year.

Here is an example to explain it. I have three players who were signed to 4-year contracts that have now expired, Player A, Player B and Player C. When I submit my roster and cutdowns, I indicate that I will be making a tender offer to Player A for $4 million and to Player B for $3 million. Player A and Player B are now "restricted free agents" and reenter the draft. Since I made no tender offer to Player C, he re-enters the free agent pool as an unrestricted free agent.

The day of the draft comes along, and the $5 million dollar rounds come and go, and no team selects Player A. At the end of the 5 million dollar rounds, Player A automatically is added to my roster with a $4 million salary (as if I drafted him in the first $4 million round). During the $4 million rounds, however, another owner selects Player B (seeing an opportunity to select a player who we both like very much at an appropriate price). Owner B gets Player B at $4 million, and my tender offer for Player B at $3 million is not accepted.

(RFA and their offers are public to prevent cheating i.e. tagging a 10mil players at 100K)

16.5i – Tenders that are not accepted are returned to the team as full credit. Tenders that are accepted result in the forfeiture of a pick at that amount in the following free agent draft. So, keeping a player at a $3 million round in 2005 will result in the loss of a $3 million round in 2006.

16.5j – Players must be tendered at a contract level that is one step higher than the final year of the current contract. Players that were previously tendered can subsequently be tendered again the following year at a contract level one step higher than the current level of the contract. So, if a player is kept at a $3 million round in 2005 in order to be tendered in 2006 he must be tendered a contract at the $4 million level. The same team can tender a player only twice.

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16.6 - Multi-year contracts may be for as many years as an owner desires up to the 5 year contract maximum (see 16.7).

16.6a – After completion of the first season each owner will be required to tender offers to at least 20 but no more than 35 players. This is only required after the first season. From the 2nd season on you may keep all 53 players on your roster if you so choose.

16.7 - Contracts will have a 5 year maximum and increase as follows...
20% of year 1 in year 2, 40% of year 2 in year 3, etc....

so, if you drafted a player at $1mil and want to resign him his contract would look like this:

year 1 $1mil
year 2 $1.2 mil
year 3 $1.68 mil
year 4 $2.688 mil
year 5 $4.838 mil

16.8 - If you choose to resign the player after 5 years (to a second contract; see the 5 year contract maximum per 16.7) the contract simply keeps growing.

16.9 - There is a $10 million cap on all salaries in the Two Bills Drive Simulation League. Therefore, players with an initial salary of $10 million may be signed for up to the 5 year contract maximum at the $10 million salary level per year.

16.10 - An owner may only release a player under contract if:

a. The team pays a fine equaling half of the player's salary over the life of his contract (Payable and deducted from the cap at the next draft).

b. The player may be released without fine if the player played in no more than 3 NFL games in the prior disk season.

For example, if a player played in 3 or fewer NFL games in the prior season the player may be released from their contract without penalty. However, if a player played in 4 or more NFL games in the prior season and had 2 years remaining on his contract for 4 million and 5 million, the owner may release him by paying a 4.5 million fine.

16.11 - Players retain their contract status upon trade.

16.12 - Any new owner who inherits a team from another owner may terminate any player's contract without penalty. These players will be immediately released into the free agent pool. This applies only to players on the owner's team at the time the new owner takes over. The owner must announce any contract-terminated players before the start of the next transaction period.

16.13 - Any player who is playing under his initial salary and not under contract will retain his initial salary through the end of the year regardless of whether or not the player has been released to the free agent pool.

16.14 - The salary and contract status for any player not occupying a spot on a league roster at the end of the season will be reset. No player acquired through the free agent draft will have a prior contract or salary attached to him.

16.15 - Any player acquired as a free agent after the initial free agent draft (e.g. A waiver wire pickup) and not subject to an existing assigned salary will be assigned an initial salary of 500k.

16.16 If a player under contract is released, the unpaid balance of the player's contract divided by the remaining years of the contract will be charged against the salary cap of the team that releases the player. If a player is traded, the other team would inherit the contract of the player and the salary would not be charged against the former team's cap figure.