If you're one of the 15 million people who participated in the fantasy football craze last season, we've got a brand-new game to wrap your brain around.
The object of the NFL Touchdown Challenge is to accrue the highest number of consecutive weeks in which your selected player scores a touchdown. You are allowed to choose one (1) running back, wide receiver or tight end each week, but you can't use the same player twice during the same streak. For example, if you pick LaDainian Tomlinson in Week 1 and he scores a touchdown, you are not allowed to use him again until a player you've selected fails to score a touchdown during that streak.
Once a streak is over, however, you can once again use Tomlinson in future streaks.
The goal is to accumulate fantasy points based on how many weeks the players you've selected score a touchdown. So, if you correctly pick players for five consecutive weeks (Weeks 1-5) that find the end zone, you will receive five fantasy points. If you pick a player who fails to score a touchdown in Week 6, that streak is over.
At that point you can start a new streak.
Remember, though, there is no accumulation of points over different streaks. You will receive points for your longest streak only. If you select players who find the end zone for the first six consecutive weeks but fail to do so in Week 7, that's a streak of six points.
If you start a new streak in Week 8 and correctly choose a player who scores every week for the remainder of the season, that's a streak of 10 weeks and is worth 10 points. That would then become your best streak.
The longest streak, of course, is 17 weeks (or the full length of the NFL regular-season schedule). If more than one participant successfully navigates the entire season without selecting a player who fails to score a touchdown, the total number of touchdowns scored during the streak will be used as a tiebreaker.
While playing the matchups will be important in the NFL Touchdown Challenge, there's far less strategy involved in this sort of game because you'll use 17 players or less (in most cases) from all 32 NFL teams. Since you're not allowed to use quarterbacks, chances are you're going to start a lot of elite running backs and wide receivers. End-zone magnets such as Tomlinson, Adrian Peterson, Marion Barber and Randy Moss are a few of the prominent players who are destined to be popular options.
Of course, even the superstars should be utilized in an intelligent fashion.
Let's take Week 1 into consideration.
The Cleveland Browns tied for third in the NFL last season for the most receiving touchdowns allowed (29), so Terrell Owens would be a better option than Moss based on the matchups. Both players have very similar value, but Moss faces a Kansas City defense that tied for the fourth-fewest touchdowns catches allowed. It's also difficult not to like Joseph Addai, who faces a Chicago Bears defense that allowed 17 rushing touchdowns (fourth-most) last season.