Should Tanking Be Allowed?

I speak of dynasty and keeper leagues to get a better draft pick. There is no legit reason to do so in redraft leagues.

I see not playing your best players to improve your future position as just a part of the game with no one getting hurt.

However, I plan to start the consolation bracket winner getting the 1st pick to add something to play for.


I like that. Added incentive is always nice to keep people engaged. In my other league after I realized that I had no shot to get into the playoffs I definitely let off the gas so I could get into a top 4 pick. As long as you are filling your roster spots and not playing guys who are on IR I have no problem with it.

I have no problems when somebody starts losers. When they trade away good players to playoff teams, that’s where I draw the line

Playoff teams trading draft picks and young talent to non playoff teams has been a part of sports for like forever with good and bad results on both sides.

Trading to win now or trading to rebuild for the future is the life blood for dynasty.

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What you are describing isn’t bad. That isn’t tanking.

Tanking is giving away talent for nothing, usually in redraft leagues.

Tanking is not starting your best players, or even playing anyone at all.

I agree Ed and said there is no legit reason for redraft to make these trades.

Tanking kills the game and should not be permitted.

Fantasy Football is a competetive game, and if you aren’t ready to compete, then don’t play it.

My favorite dynasty league (12 teams) just saw a team missing the playoffs because the #12 team (3-10 going into week 14) beat them in week 14 in an upset win.

You say tanking doesn’t hurt anybody. Yet it does. It kills the competetive spirit in the league, and that spirit is what makes a league fun to play.

In the leagues where I act as a commish, the rule is clear: you need to bring a competitive lineup every week. Don’t leave injured or BYE week players in the lineup. Don’t start 2nd tier guys over NFL starters. And if you lack a player on any position, address that problem via the waiver wire. Even if that means you have to cut someone you’d like to keep.

Rebuiliding is a different story. If you realize your team isn’t contending, and you trade your top players away for future draft picks, that is a perfectly legitimate strategy, as long as the trades aren’t wildly unbalanced.

But if you are not ready to compete for 14 full weeks + playoffs, then don’t play dynasty. There’s always best-ball leagues or casual redraft formats that tolerate inactivity. If the league is clear about it, that’s fine. Not my cup of tea, but hey… at the end of the day, it’s the majority of owners who decide which way to go.

But a dynasty league in which tanking is permitted is not a league I’d enjoy playing.


I agree with most all of what you said. However, if a team in the consolation bracket plays some of it’s subs in place of it’s best I don’t care for it but it is up to the manager. I cannot condemn a team for doing something to try and improve.

I do see what you are thinking and saying but see that an issue for the league to give those teams a reason to care and go all out. JMO

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The problem is: if you allow that, you punish those teams in the bottom third that still want to compete.

Of course, there is always a gray area. I’d never expect a team owner to start the players with the highest projected scores. If only because projections on some platforms are ridiculous.

If you have 2 NFL starters to chose from and pick the one with the terrible matchup, then hey… But if you start a player who typically plays only 20% of his team’s snaps over a surefire starter, then expect to receive a message from me asking you to elaborate why you thought this was a good idea.

If you want to get better draft picks, try doing early pick swap trades with a team you think will end up behind you. Of course, that’s a gamble, but pretty much every decision in fantasy football is. That’s what makes the game fun.

But if you decide to tank at some point of the season, you may distort the playoff picture. You may lose in week 13 to a team you might have beaten in week 6, when you were still competing.

In all my 3 current dynasties, there were week 13 and 14 upsets that made teams miss the playoffs. Only because the weaker teams that were already eliminated from playoff contention were still competing.

That is what makes a great league. Not being allowed to start players that are almost guaranteed to give you no points.

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I believe you misunderstood. In no way am I saying teams should not play their best when it matters.

I am saying that if you are in the consultation bracket in which a win means absolutely nothing to any team there, I do not care if you play subs looking for a higher pick.

Unless the league gives a reason to care like the winner getting the top pick which I plan to do.