What does PPR mean in fantasy football?

Explaining the difference between standard and PPR leagues in fantasy football
New York Giants v San Francisco 49ers
New York Giants v San Francisco 49ers / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages

As an additional wrinkle to the fantasy football stratosphere, points per reception — or PPR — leagues have been around the game for the better part of two decades. With the recent increase in participants, PPR leagues have become one of the most popular formats among fans.

In a nutshell, PPR formats are self-explanatory. In such leagues, players receive an additional point for a reception to reward pass catchers who see more volume. Certain leagues may also follow a half-PPR system that rewards half a point for a catch rather than a full point.

With the consideration of PPR, fantasy football users are generally given three options for their leagues: standard, half-PPR and full PPR. Standard leagues will not give any points for a reception and solely base scoring on yards accrued, touchdowns and two-point conversions scored.

So far in 2024, while PPR leagues give additional value to pass catchers, there are no mainstream leagues that similarly reward running backs with fantasy points for rush attempts.

What type of players are better in PPR formats?

PPR leagues generally favor players who are the dominant alpha receiver on their team. Players who receive a larger target share and usage are those who excel in PPR formats over others who rack up points with their speed or YAC — yards after catch — skill set.

Unless a Philly special-like trick play is involved, PPR scoring will not affect the quarterback, kicker or defensive positions. While PPR leagues award a point for each reception, quarterbacks do not receive additional points for every completion.

PPR formats will alter scoring, and ultimately the fantasy rankings, but the dominant stat-stuffers will still reign supreme. Players like Wan'Dale Robinson or Trey McBride will receive a boost for their high volume but will not surpass the production of Justin Jefferson. To maximize PPR potential, target players like Tyreek Hill, who was second in receptions in 2023 and first in receiving yards.

As one can expect, pass-catching running backs also receive a significant raise in PPR leagues. Rewarding receptions for such players gives additional value to a player like Christian McCaffrey over Derrick Henry.

Receivers and tight ends will still gain most of their points from receiving yards but additional PPR leagues give short-route players more value. Receiver A who catches two passes for 20 yards will score more points than Receiver B, who records one catch for 20 yards.

Half-PPR scoring example

In Week 16 of the 2023 season, Amon-Ra St. Brown put up 12 receptions on 14 targets for 106 receiving yards and one touchdown. In half-PPR leagues, St. Brown would receive six points for his 12 catches, leading to 22.6 total fantasy points.

Full PPR scoring example

In Week 14 of the 2023 season, Austin Ekeler had 10 carries for 51 rushing yards and a touchdown while adding five receptions on seven targets for 49 receiving yards. In standard leagues, Ekeler would have been responsible for 16 fantasy points but in a full PPR format, he recorded 19.5 points.