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Throw my game to change playoff teams? (1 Viewer)

hamster_13

Footballguy
One of my RT teams is firmly cemented as the highest scoring team this year. I will absolutely be in the playoffs. If I play my normal team next week, I will be the #1 seed (and division winner) and the 2nd highest scoring team will be the wildcard and play me the following week. This guy has beat me both times we've played this year. IF I throw my game, a much worse team will win our division and I will become the wild card team.

It would greatly increase my title chances to lose next week. What is the consensus on this stuff? All is fair in love and fantasy football or poor sportsmanship? Does it makes any difference that it is internet strangers vs a local league?

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.

 

Ghost Rider

Footballguy
What Adam said.

That is the one drawback to online leagues. Some teams that are awful stop settling lineups and basically give wins away, which affects who makes the playoffs and whatnot.

 

bweiser

Footballguy
guy posted in one online league that i'm in that he was 'tanking' his game so someone could finish first.

thursday night, about 6 p.m., i notice he doesn't have an active defense. his defense is the steelers. i ##### about it. he puts them in.

he has a full lineup set friday.

i have a late night saturday. don't check lineups until sunday at 4 p.m. he's pulled one of his starting RBs and has a blank roster spot.

i ##### and moan and yell that this is collusion. commish disagrees. tells me i'm overreacting.

tanking team still won ... lol ... i finish first overall in regular season based on total points.

 

parasaurolophus

Footballguy
I have been joking with a coworker that I am going to tank this coming week because it is better for my team. He needs me to win for him to get in. Would never do it, but man it is fun. Have cutler starting at QB right now and dennis johnson over forte.

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
I have been joking with a coworker that I am going to tank this coming week because it is better for my team. He needs me to win for him to get in. Would never do it, but man it is fun. Have cutler starting at QB right now and dennis johnson over forte.
While actual tanking is always dirty pool, well-played gamesmanship like this is whole-heartedly approved. :tebow:

 

-fish-

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
bull####. it's no different than a team sitting their starters when they've already clinched home field. by tanking a game, they feel they have a better chance to win a championship.

if you think you can win by getting a better playoff matchup, go for it. if the league is concerned about it, change your playoff rules so the #1 team gets to choose their matchup.

 

kd1

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
if the league is concerned about it, change your playoff rules so the #1 team gets to choose their matchup.
That would only lessen the tankable situations, not eliminate them.

 

Hoss Style

Footballguy
I'm not a fan of giving away a game on purpose, but I guess it's part of the game. It's the end of the season and your obviously playing for playoff position, so I wouldn't throw a fit over it - you've earned it by having a strong team.

I agree with Adam, though, that tanking during the season (because you've quit on your team or are trying for a high draft pick the next year) really can run the balance of a league. We vote out an owner if he ever does this, and require that every owner start an active player at each position.

As long as you're starting a player at every position and don't have any blank spots - I guess it's your right.

Watch out, though - karma has a way of coming back! ;)

 
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Run It Up

Footballguy
Nothing more bush the sandbagging or throwing a game.

Start a full roster, play every game to score the most points possible.

 

ghostguy123

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
bull####. it's no different than a team sitting their starters when they've already clinched home field. by tanking a game, they feel they have a better chance to win a championship.

if you think you can win by getting a better playoff matchup, go for it. if the league is concerned about it, change your playoff rules so the #1 team gets to choose their matchup.
It's no different???? Really?? I mean REALLY???

Your aren't making a decision to put your players in harms way and risk injury by puttng them in your fantasy football lineup. No different???? lol

That said, if this is some internet redraft league where you don't know any of the owners, then I have no problem with ANYTHING lineup related. The same thing can just as easily happen to you if someone wants you out of the playoffs and they let another team win that you are fighting with for a playoff spot.

You can be all honor and integrity, but while you are doing that many of your opponents do not share that same thought process in those kinds of leagues.

If you don't approve of those kinds of shannanigans, I would suggest not joining an internet redraft league with strangers.

Now, if it is a dynasty league then of course no, cause you would probably be kicked out of the league, and should be.

If it is a league where you know the owners, then no, cause chances are you will lose friends, as you should.

 
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TheStig

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.

 

dewmass

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?

 
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Mr. Irrelevant

IBL Representative
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods
I find it highly ironic that you posted this in direct reply to Adam, who made a very good argument against it using neither of these points.

If you're going to classify maintaining the competitive balance of a league as mere "sportsmanship", you've never had a long-running league break up chaotically and without warning before. I've had good friends who stopped speaking to each other because of issues just like this one affecting fantasy league playoffs and, ultimately, payoffs.

Calculate the +EV of, say, a 5% better chance of a win in the first round of your playoffs from employing a tactic like this. Then try to consider the meta -EV of having a situation like one above destroy a league and/or groups of friendships. Ultimately it's almost never worth it.

 

Interseptopus

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.
Completely agree with this. I think it's comical that the only reasons people can come up with as to not do this is sportsmanship or fantasy gods. Boo hoo. If I'm the #1 seed and I can lose the last game to get a lesser opponent into my bracket of the playoffs, that's a position I've earned by being good all year and determining my own destiny.

Furthermore, when Denver rests manning week 17 I can count on most of you above to be bashing them for not playing their best players, and sitting them to keep them healthy so that it increases their chances in the playoffs?

Or when a team takes a knee at the end of the game, you guys are yelling at the TV telling them to throw a pass because they are tanking it at the end of the game to secure a win?

You do what is in the best interests of your team, period.

I've been criticized for picking up the only decent QB off waivers when my opponent has a bye at QB and no back up. I'm sorry that you put yourself in a position where you had no option at backup on your roster whicH puts you at the mercy of the WW?

I've never thrown a game, but I considered it week 12 when I faced a team that was on the bubble and worse than a different team also on the bubble. I did the math and determined I would be fine by just beating him and he would still make the playoffs. He did.

 

Interseptopus

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods
I find it highly ironic that you posted this in direct reply to Adam, who made a very good argument against it using neither of these points.

If you're going to classify maintaining the competitive balance of a league as mere "sportsmanship", you've never had a long-running league break up chaotically and without warning before. I've had good friends who stopped speaking to each other because of issues just like this one affecting fantasy league playoffs and, ultimately, payoffs.

Calculate the +EV of, say, a 5% better chance of a win in the first round of your playoffs from employing a tactic like this. Then try to consider the meta -EV of having a situation like one above destroy a league and/or groups of friendships. Ultimately it's almost never worth it.
If my friends took a fantasy football league so personally that they stopped speaking to me over their $20-50 entrance fee, or a mere $250 pay out, obviously that friendship wasn't worth much to begin with, or your friends need to relax

 

TheStig

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?
Exactly how is it cheating?

There are ways with rules to mitigate the motivation to tank or to make it against the rules.

First way, stop playing head to head and simply do a best ball points league. But since it is head to head, each manager must make their own roster decisions based on their strategic needs.

You are fine to leave a league that lacks the foresight to have rules to handle this situation. But as a league mate you are just as much at fault for not speaking up in August at the draft. Throw a hissyfit and leave though and claim some moral high ground.

 

Interseptopus

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?
I'm perfectly fine with teams tanking for draft picks. I think the Jacksonville jaguars are fools for actually winning games. That franchise needs a #1 overall.

I'm perfectly fine with GB IRing Rodgers even if he would be ready for a week 16 or 17 game, because it's not worth it and it improves their draft position.

I'm perfectly fine with the Boston celtics and other nba teams tanking this season to get a good chance at a top draft pick. I wish my bucks would do that, although I really don't care about nba.

 

parasaurolophus

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.
Completely agree with this. I think it's comical that the only reasons people can come up with as to not do this is sportsmanship or fantasy gods. Boo hoo. If I'm the #1 seed and I can lose the last game to get a lesser opponent into my bracket of the playoffs, that's a position I've earned by being good all year and determining my own destiny.

Furthermore, when Denver rests manning week 17 I can count on most of you above to be bashing them for not playing their best players, and sitting them to keep them healthy so that it increases their chances in the playoffs?

Or when a team takes a knee at the end of the game, you guys are yelling at the TV telling them to throw a pass because they are tanking it at the end of the game to secure a win?

You do what is in the best interests of your team, period.

I've been criticized for picking up the only decent QB off waivers when my opponent has a bye at QB and no back up. I'm sorry that you put yourself in a position where you had no option at backup on your roster whicH puts you at the mercy of the WW?

I've never thrown a game, but I considered it week 12 when I faced a team that was on the bubble and worse than a different team also on the bubble. I did the math and determined I would be fine by just beating him and he would still make the playoffs. He did.
Most people play fantasy football for the enjoyment of it.

Even in my situation it would be better for me to tank since it would allow me to keep a surging team out of the playoffs. Just the reactions I am getting from teasing him about it are enough proof for me to know I should never do it because it would cause a stir that I simply don't want to deal with and would cause a problem I simply don't need. People will always overreact to something like this.

So even though I agree with you and don't see anything unethical about the move, I just think it is silly.

Now if I was in a league where thousands were on the line and I wasn't friends with the people it is a whole different story. I would never be in a league like that though, because that would take away most of the fun. Even though my league has had some frustrating rule quirks and some weird things go down with vetoes and whatever, I am still enjoying the rivalry games that are happening each week and the trash talk.

 

TheStig

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods
I find it highly ironic that you posted this in direct reply to Adam, who made a very good argument against it using neither of these points.

If you're going to classify maintaining the competitive balance of a league as mere "sportsmanship", you've never had a long-running league break up chaotically and without warning before. I've had good friends who stopped speaking to each other because of issues just like this one affecting fantasy league playoffs and, ultimately, payoffs.

Calculate the +EV of, say, a 5% better chance of a win in the first round of your playoffs from employing a tactic like this. Then try to consider the meta -EV of having a situation like one above destroy a league and/or groups of friendships. Ultimately it's almost never worth it.
Really? This would "Destroy the league"? Only 3 guys in the league care and two of them lack any control of their destiny. If you feel bad about it take the guy you screwed out to dinner.

The problem is people wrongfully believe their season comes down to week 13 as if everything that happened previously had no bearing. FF is 13 weeks worth of decisions, strategy, and luck, good or bad. To base your entire seasons results on the outcome of one week is simplistic and a cop out. And quite frankly it is just sour grapes.

I bet both of the bubble teams has a week of regret with points left on the bench from their decision, but blame the guy who made the right decisions all season long for using his luxury to pick his poison.

 

Interseptopus

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.
Completely agree with this. I think it's comical that the only reasons people can come up with as to not do this is sportsmanship or fantasy gods. Boo hoo. If I'm the #1 seed and I can lose the last game to get a lesser opponent into my bracket of the playoffs, that's a position I've earned by being good all year and determining my own destiny.

Furthermore, when Denver rests manning week 17 I can count on most of you above to be bashing them for not playing their best players, and sitting them to keep them healthy so that it increases their chances in the playoffs?

Or when a team takes a knee at the end of the game, you guys are yelling at the TV telling them to throw a pass because they are tanking it at the end of the game to secure a win?

You do what is in the best interests of your team, period.

I've been criticized for picking up the only decent QB off waivers when my opponent has a bye at QB and no back up. I'm sorry that you put yourself in a position where you had no option at backup on your roster whicH puts you at the mercy of the WW?

I've never thrown a game, but I considered it week 12 when I faced a team that was on the bubble and worse than a different team also on the bubble. I did the math and determined I would be fine by just beating him and he would still make the playoffs. He did.
Most people play fantasy football for the enjoyment of it.Even in my situation it would be better for me to tank since it would allow me to keep a surging team out of the playoffs. Just the reactions I am getting from teasing him about it are enough proof for me to know I should never do it because it would cause a stir that I simply don't want to deal with and would cause a problem I simply don't need. People will always overreact to something like this.

So even though I agree with you and don't see anything unethical about the move, I just think it is silly.

Now if I was in a league where thousands were on the line and I wasn't friends with the people it is a whole different story. I would never be in a league like that though, because that would take away most of the fun. Even though my league has had some frustrating rule quirks and some weird things go down with vetoes and whatever, I am still enjoying the rivalry games that are happening each week and the trash talk.
Absolutely you have to weigh all the options. I've never been in a league with so much money on the line that this would risk friendships being broken or being kicked out of the league or whatever. I don't think I would be in a league like that either. However, if I was in a league like that, I would hope there would be some rules against this type of behavior.

I would agree, if you can't handle the aftermath that comes with it, then I wouldn't do it. Nothing wrong with doing it IMO however.

You could always do it in a sneaky way by playing a not so great flex player. Will play your studs but put in one or two other guys tat might result in you losing

 

Apple Jack

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?
Exactly how is it cheating?

There are ways with rules to mitigate the motivation to tank or to make it against the rules.

First way, stop playing head to head and simply do a best ball points league. But since it is head to head, each manager must make their own roster decisions based on their strategic needs.

You are fine to leave a league that lacks the foresight to have rules to handle this situation. But as a league mate you are just as much at fault for not speaking up in August at the draft. Throw a hissyfit and leave though and claim some moral high ground.
Well, many of us are in leagues with people/friends who are not douchebags, so we don't have to worry about it.

 

Statorama

gangster
As long as a team fields a lineup with each position filled with an active player, I have no problem with the team starting Cecil Shorts over Josh Gordon for example.

If I put myself in a position where I'm counting on another team, that's on me.

 

TheStig

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?
Exactly how is it cheating?

There are ways with rules to mitigate the motivation to tank or to make it against the rules.

First way, stop playing head to head and simply do a best ball points league. But since it is head to head, each manager must make their own roster decisions based on their strategic needs.

You are fine to leave a league that lacks the foresight to have rules to handle this situation. But as a league mate you are just as much at fault for not speaking up in August at the draft. Throw a hissyfit and leave though and claim some moral high ground.
Well, many of us are in leagues with people/friends who are not douchebags, so we don't have to worry about it.
I'm all for rules being put in place to prevent it from happening, but in spite of a rule in being in place it is simply a strategic move, period. As if you or your league mates have never picked a player off the WW that you didn't need but your opponent did? Is that not also douchey by your own standards?

This thread appears every year so the scenario is not a new Fantasy Revelation or a surprise. Address it in August or shut up about it. But if you don't address it in August, then it is your own fault. You have a voice in your league, if you chose not to use it August, then you should keep quiet about it in November.

 

McGarnicle

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?
Exactly how is it cheating?

There are ways with rules to mitigate the motivation to tank or to make it against the rules.

First way, stop playing head to head and simply do a best ball points league. But since it is head to head, each manager must make their own roster decisions based on their strategic needs.

You are fine to leave a league that lacks the foresight to have rules to handle this situation. But as a league mate you are just as much at fault for not speaking up in August at the draft. Throw a hissyfit and leave though and claim some moral high ground.
Well, many of us are in leagues with people/friends who are not douchebags, so we don't have to worry about it.
I'm all for rules being put in place to prevent it from happening, but in spite of a rule in being in place it is simply a strategic move, period. As if you or your league mates have never picked a player off the WW that you didn't need but your opponent did? Is that not also douchey by your own standards?

This thread appears every year so the scenario is not a new Fantasy Revelation or a surprise. Address it in August or shut up about it. But if you don't address it in August, then it is your own fault. You have a voice in your league, if you chose not to use it August, then you should keep quiet about it in November.
It's a punk move and your sig is stupid. I hope you go bankrupt.
 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
bull####. it's no different than a team sitting their starters when they've already clinched home field. by tanking a game, they feel they have a better chance to win a championship.

if you think you can win by getting a better playoff matchup, go for it. if the league is concerned about it, change your playoff rules so the #1 team gets to choose their matchup.
If you're sitting Peyton Manning on your fantasy team because you think it lessens his chances of getting injured, I'd say you've got bigger problems than your first-round playoff matchup to worry about.

An NFL team resting starters to recover from existing injury and prevent future injury is not the same thing as tanking. The NFL team's GOAL is still to win the game. They're still trying their level best to win the game with the players they have on the field. They are not trying to lose. For example, see: http://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/200501020buf.htm

When a fantasy team "rests its starters", however, it is trying to lose. It wants to lose. Its goal is to lose. The ultimate, most desirable outcome is adding a loss in the loss column. That's why "resting starters" is not a very good NFL comparison. A better NFL comparison would be if a terrible team started intentionally TRYING TO LOSE to improve its draft position. And the second anyone provides me with any examples of that happening, I'll warm to the idea that it's okay in fantasy, too. Good luck finding any, though, because it doesn't happen. No NFL team intentionally tries to lose a game, even when losing that game is in their own best interest. Just look at Jacksonville, Tampa, and Atlanta in recent weeks, all getting key wins that give them nothing but might ultimately cost them a franchise player in the draft. Look at Houston giving all they have and nearly knocking off the mighty Patriots, despite Houston jockeying for the #1 pick and New England jockeying for the #1 seed. NFL teams never, ever, ever intentionally try to lose. And neither should any fantasy team. Ever.

 
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TheStig

Footballguy
Similar thing happened this week in a dynasty I was in. It didn't affect me as my team was well out of race, but guy slotted in players injured for weeks to ensure a lower seeding and better matchup. I've chosen to leave the league as I'm not interested in playing with people who mess around like this. Very surprised there are people who say it's ok. As far as I'm concerned it's cheating, it's not acceptable to tank for draft positioning but is for playoff seeding? Really?
Exactly how is it cheating?There are ways with rules to mitigate the motivation to tank or to make it against the rules.First way, stop playing head to head and simply do a best ball points league. But since it is head to head, each manager must make their own roster decisions based on their strategic needs.You are fine to leave a league that lacks the foresight to have rules to handle this situation. But as a league mate you are just as much at fault for not speaking up in August at the draft. Throw a hissyfit and leave though and claim some moral high ground.
Well, many of us are in leagues with people/friends who are not douchebags, so we don't have to worry about it.
I'm all for rules being put in place to prevent it from happening, but in spite of a rule in being in place it is simply a strategic move, period. As if you or your league mates have never picked a player off the WW that you didn't need but your opponent did? Is that not also douchey by your own standards?This thread appears every year so the scenario is not a new Fantasy Revelation or a surprise. Address it in August or shut up about it. But if you don't address it in August, then it is your own fault. You have a voice in your league, if you chose not to use it August, then you should keep quiet about it in November.
It's a punk move and your sig is stupid. I hope you go bankrupt.
I always know I'm on the right side of an argument when the "other side" simply uses emotional based arguments.

"Punk move" only translates to one of the bubble teams, but it is another guys "miracle".

Is using your WW position to horde a player of need from another team a "punk move"?

Is benching your D to preserve a close margin of victory a "punk move"?

The object of FF is to win the the league. It is not your job to ensure a level playing field for your opponents. A well structured league should have created a system that maintains parity and motivation to compete throughout the season.

Tanking to potentially win is not the same as tanking or being a dead team.

And if it is sooo distasteful a move is this scenario not predictable enough to address with a league rule?

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.
You forgot one.

C. Social Reciprocity.

As societies, we enact all sorts of social codes that discourage certain behaviors that would be advantageous on a micro scale, but disadvantageous on a macro scale. For instance, if I'm in the grocery store, it's in my own best interest to cut in line. It gets me out the door faster. It's not like there are any laws against it. The worst consequences I'd be faced with are being made to go to the back of the line, which is what would happen to me anyway if I didn't cut. So, best possible outcome for me is that I cut in line.

At the same time, if everyone in the grocery store reached that conclusion, and everyone tried to cut, chaos would reign. All of a sudden, my advantage from cutting would be completely negated. Everyone fighting their way to the front would cause all sorts of delays, meaning if everyone tried to cut, EVERYONE would get out of the store later. This is a situation where, when everyone acts in their best interest, everyone is worse off. Because of that, we've created a social code that valorizes waiting our turn in line. We all decide to act against our individual interests with the understanding that we all benefit in the long run.

Tanking is the same thing. Yes, in some individual situation, intentionally losing a game might result in a better outcome for you. At the same time, for every such situation, there's another situation where if another team tanks, it will result in a worse outcome for you. Fantasy football is necessarily a zero-sum game- one team's win is ALWAYS one team's loss. If one team's situation improves, everyone else's situation must by definition worsen by an exactly equal amount. So, if we imagine a no-holds-barred fantasy world where everyone tanks when it is most advantageous, in the long run, nobody will actually benefit from it. Today's gainer will be tomorrow's loser. What that crazy, tanktastic alternate reality WOULD accomplish, however, is hindering the goal of teams reaching the playoffs and getting seeded based purely on merit. So not only does no one benefit from tanking, but everyone who believes that fantasy results should reward merit (which, hopefully, is almost everyone) winds up losing.

Situations like this are why reciprocity exists. I agree not to tank today in the hopes that you will agree not to tank tomorrow. Competitive balance remains. Dystopia is avoided. Social mores win again.

Never tank. Ever.

 

Dinsy Ejotuz

Footballguy
Some people are just ####s. They tank. They try to trade injured players before the news is widespread. They pick up and drop a dozen players to lock them off the WW. They use the WW to trade after the deadline. They collude.

Kick these idiots out of your league. Life's too short.

 

TheStig

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
bull####. it's no different than a team sitting their starters when they've already clinched home field. by tanking a game, they feel they have a better chance to win a championship.if you think you can win by getting a better playoff matchup, go for it. if the league is concerned about it, change your playoff rules so the #1 team gets to choose their matchup.
If you're sitting Peyton Manning on your fantasy team because you think it lessens his chances of getting injured, I'd say you've got bigger problems than your first-round playoff matchup to worry about.

An NFL team resting starters to recover from existing injury and prevent future injury is not the same thing as tanking. The NFL team's GOAL is still to win the game. They're still trying their level best to win the game with the players they have on the field. They are not trying to lose. For example, see: http://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/200501020buf.htm

When a fantasy team "rests its starters", however, it is trying to lose. It wants to lose. Its goal is to lose. The ultimate, most desirable outcome is adding a loss in the loss column. That's why "resting starters" is not a very good NFL comparison. A better NFL comparison would be if a terrible team started intentionally TRYING TO LOSE to improve its draft position. And the second anyone provides me with any examples of that ever happening, I'll warm to the idea that it's okay in fantasy, too. Good luck finding any, though, because it doesn't happen. No NFL team intentionally tries to lose a game, even when losing that game is in their own best interest. Just look at Jacksonville, Tampa, and Atlanta in recent weeks, all getting key wins that give them nothing but might ultimately cost them a franchise player in the draft. Look at Houston giving all they have and nearly knocking off the mighty Patriots, despite Houston jockeying for the #1 pick and New England jockeying for the #1 seed. NFL teams never, ever, ever intentionally try to lose. And neither should any fantasy team. Ever.
NFL League Rules mandate that the teams roster a team and plays. But the team has determined that the "win" is not worth the risk of losing a player. They are in fact not valuing the "Win" more than their players health and availability for a "meaningful" game. They may not be "tanking" but they value the game no more than they do in preseason.

 

pizzatyme

Footballguy
If it a money league, I believe you do what you can to win money. You paid your entry fee.

Free league, just play it out.

 

McGarnicle

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.
You forgot one.

C. Social Reciprocity.

As societies, we enact all sorts of social codes that discourage certain behaviors that would be advantageous on a micro scale, but disadvantageous on a macro scale. For instance, if I'm in the grocery store, it's in my own best interest to cut in line. It gets me out the door faster. It's not like there are any laws against it. The worst consequences I'd be faced with are being made to go to the back of the line, which is what would happen to me anyway if I didn't cut. So, best possible outcome for me is that I cut in line.

At the same time, if everyone in the grocery store reached that conclusion, and everyone tried to cut, chaos would reign. All of a sudden, my advantage from cutting would be completely negated. Everyone fighting their way to the front would cause all sorts of delays, meaning if everyone tried to cut, EVERYONE would get out of the store later. This is a situation where, when everyone acts in their best interest, everyone is worse off. Because of that, we've created a social code that valorizes waiting our turn in line. We all decide to act against our individual interests with the understanding that we all benefit in the long run.

Tanking is the same thing. Yes, in some individual situation, intentionally losing a game might result in a better outcome for you. At the same time, for every such situation, there's another situation where if another team tanks, it will result in a worse outcome for you. Fantasy football is necessarily a zero-sum game- one team's win is ALWAYS one team's loss. If one team's situation improves, everyone else's situation must by definition worsen by an exactly equal amount. So, if we imagine a no-holds-barred fantasy world where everyone tanks when it is most advantageous, in the long run, nobody will actually benefit from it. Today's gainer will be tomorrow's loser. What that crazy, tanktastic alternate reality WOULD accomplish, however, is hindering the goal of teams reaching the playoffs and getting seeded based purely on merit. So not only does no one benefit from tanking, but everyone who believes that fantasy results should reward merit (which, hopefully, is almost everyone) winds up losing.

Situations like this are why reciprocity exists. I agree not to tank today in the hopes that you will agree not to tank tomorrow. Competitive balance remains. Dystopia is avoided. Social mores win again.

Never tank. Ever.
This is fantastic.
 

Ignoratio Elenchi

Footballguy
I'm not going to lie, if I was playing in a redraft league with strangers for money, I'd do whatever I believed would maximize my chances of winning the prize money. I'd expect the other owners to do the same. This isn't waiting in line at the grocery store, it's gambling. :shrug:

Of course, I don't actually play in fantasy football leagues for money with strangers, and perhaps this is one of the reasons why.

 

TheStig

Footballguy
Never, ever, ever intentionally throw a game in fantasy football. It's TERRIBLE for the competitive balance of the league. Ultimately, having a well-functioning, acrimony-free league is far more beneficial than trying to earn yourself a better round 1 playoff matchup.
This debate comes up every year. And the best that anyone has ever come up with against tanking is either:

A. Sportsmanship

B. Karma AKA Fantasy Gods

It is this simple, the two bubble teams do not control their own destiny. Their season, roster, schedule put them in that situation in the first place. No matter whether the guy tanks or not does not change that one of the two teams is eliminated. He earned the luxury of determining his own destiny of sorts and unless there is a league rule against it he should do what is in his best interest not the interest of two league mates.

He simply doesn't need to win this week and he has earned the right to better his chances for next week.

For all we know, his losing could also improve his waiver position. There a lot of good strategic reasons to tank. Thay are more logical than the emotional tirade of it's "bush league", "think of the league first", or "the fantasy Gods will smite you".

If next year, he is in the opposite position he'll understand the situation, and while upset, won't hold a grudge because it is a part of the game.
You forgot one.

C. Social Reciprocity.

As societies, we enact all sorts of social codes that discourage certain behaviors that would be advantageous on a micro scale, but disadvantageous on a macro scale. For instance, if I'm in the grocery store, it's in my own best interest to cut in line. It gets me out the door faster. It's not like there are any laws against it. The worst consequences I'd be faced with are being made to go to the back of the line, which is what would happen to me anyway if I didn't cut. So, best possible outcome for me is that I cut in line.

At the same time, if everyone in the grocery store reached that conclusion, and everyone tried to cut, chaos would reign. All of a sudden, my advantage from cutting would be completely negated. Everyone fighting their way to the front would cause all sorts of delays, meaning if everyone tried to cut, EVERYONE would get out of the store later. This is a situation where, when everyone acts in their best interest, everyone is worse off. Because of that, we've created a social code that valorizes waiting our turn in line. We all decide to act against our individual interests with the understanding that we all benefit in the long run.

Tanking is the same thing. Yes, in some individual situation, intentionally losing a game might result in a better outcome for you. At the same time, for every such situation, there's another situation where if another team tanks, it will result in a worse outcome for you. Fantasy football is necessarily a zero-sum game- one team's win is ALWAYS one team's loss. If one team's situation improves, everyone else's situation must by definition worsen by an exactly equal amount. So, if we imagine a no-holds-barred fantasy world where everyone tanks when it is most advantageous, in the long run, nobody will actually benefit from it. Today's gainer will be tomorrow's loser. What that crazy, tanktastic alternate reality WOULD accomplish, however, is hindering the goal of teams reaching the playoffs and getting seeded based purely on merit. So not only does no one benefit from tanking, but everyone who believes that fantasy results should reward merit (which, hopefully, is almost everyone) winds up losing.

Situations like this are why reciprocity exists. I agree not to tank today in the hopes that you will agree not to tank tomorrow. Competitive balance remains. Dystopia is avoided. Social mores win again.

Never tank. Ever.
One team reached the playoffs based on merit. One of the other two teams will reach the playoffs based on fate regardless of what Team A does.

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
NFL League Rules mandate that the teams roster a team and plays. But the team has determined that the "win" is not worth the risk of losing a player. They are in fact not valuing the "Win" more than their players health and availability for a "meaningful" game. They may not be "tanking" but they value the game no more than they do in preseason.
Great. I'm okay with a team valuing a win less than his opponent. He can feel free to be less excited about his victory than his opponent would have been. He can even be downright apathetic when he wins by 30 points, that doesn't bother me in the slightest as long as they're still trying to get that win.

I'm never okay with a team intentionally trying to lose. Ever.

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
One team reached the playoffs based on merit. One of the other two teams will reach the playoffs based on fate regardless of what Team A does.
The existence of elements of luck and chance do not preclude the existence of elements of merit.

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
I'm not going to lie, if I was playing in a redraft league with strangers for money, I'd do whatever I believed would maximize my chances of winning the prize money. I'd expect the other owners to do the same. This isn't waiting in line at the grocery store, it's gambling. :shrug:

Of course, I don't actually play in fantasy football leagues for money with strangers, and perhaps this is one of the reasons why.
I understand why someone would feel that way. Online leagues with strangers are like non-iterated Prisoner's Dilemmas; people tend to act in an "every man for themselves" manner in those situations, and money is pretty well known as a corrupting influence. This doesn't change the fact that, as a class, all fantasy owners everywhere would be better off if no one ever tanked, ever.

 

Statorama

gangster
To the grocery line argument, I believe the construction zone scenario is more apt. We've all been sitting in a slow moving right hand lane because the sign said "left lane closed ahead". We've all seen someone pull out of the right lane and speed up to the front of the left lane and successfully merge into a stronger position in the right lane.

 

TheStig

Footballguy
NFL League Rules mandate that the teams roster a team and plays. But the team has determined that the "win" is not worth the risk of losing a player. They are in fact not valuing the "Win" more than their players health and availability for a "meaningful" game. They may not be "tanking" but they value the game no more than they do in preseason.
Great. I'm okay with a team valuing a win less than his opponent. He can feel free to be less excited about his victory than his opponent would have been. He can even be downright apathetic when he wins by 30 points, that doesn't bother me in the slightest as long as they're still trying to get that win.

I'm never okay with a team intentionally trying to lose. Ever.
In the long run he is not trying to lose though. He is trying to control his destiny in a way that he feels is best for him. His objective is to win the league, not to win week 14.

I have gone a week or two in bye weeks without a full roster because, in my opinion, dropping a player for a WW guy just to be fully rostered was not in my overall best interest. We have shallow benches and no rule stating a team needs to be fully rostered. I was blatantly not being as competitive as I could have that week because I valued my overall big picture chances more than the short term gain.

His scenario is no different.

 

pizzatyme

Footballguy
The goal in a fantasy league is to win the championship. Outside of cheating, a team has EVERY right to do what they think it takes to win, including "tanking" a game.

Championship>any single game

 

Godsbrother

Footballguy
NFL League Rules mandate that the teams roster a team and plays. But the team has determined that the "win" is not worth the risk of losing a player. They are in fact not valuing the "Win" more than their players health and availability for a "meaningful" game. They may not be "tanking" but they value the game no more than they do in preseason.
Great. I'm okay with a team valuing a win less than his opponent. He can feel free to be less excited about his victory than his opponent would have been. He can even be downright apathetic when he wins by 30 points, that doesn't bother me in the slightest as long as they're still trying to get that win.

I'm never okay with a team intentionally trying to lose. Ever.
In the long run he is not trying to lose though. He is trying to control his destiny in a way that he feels is best for him. His objective is to win the league, not to win week 14.

I have gone a week or two in bye weeks without a full roster because, in my opinion, dropping a player for a WW guy just to be fully rostered was not in my overall best interest. We have shallow benches and no rule stating a team needs to be fully rostered. I was blatantly not being as competitive as I could have that week because I valued my overall big picture chances more than the short term gain.

His scenario is no different.
Agree with this. You have to do what is in your best interest to win the league. That said you are likely going to going to play this team eventually. It might be best to play them sooner rather than later based on the matchups.

 

Ignoratio Elenchi

Footballguy
To the grocery line argument, I believe the construction zone scenario is more apt. We've all been sitting in a slow moving right hand lane because the sign said "left lane closed ahead". We've all seen someone pull out of the right lane and speed up to the front of the left lane and successfully merge into a stronger position in the right lane.
This is actually how you're supposed to merge in those situations. Use both lanes until you actually reach the point where one of the lanes ends, don't all pile up in the right hand lane a mile ahead of that point.

 

TheStig

Footballguy
One team reached the playoffs based on merit. One of the other two teams will reach the playoffs based on fate regardless of what Team A does.
The existence of elements of luck and chance do not preclude the existence of elements of merit.
The team that gets in based on the lucky tank deserves it as much as the other team. Neither controls their fate in anyway shape or form. But their fate was not determined this week by team A, it was determined over the course of 13 weeks.

 

Adam Harstad

Moderator
To the grocery line argument, I believe the construction zone scenario is more apt. We've all been sitting in a slow moving right hand lane because the sign said "left lane closed ahead". We've all seen someone pull out of the right lane and speed up to the front of the left lane and successfully merge into a stronger position in the right lane.
Sure, there are lots of real-world examples of situations where if everyone acted in their own best interest, everyone would be worse off.

Imagine we lived in a world that believed it was okay to pull into the left lane, speed up, and merge back in. What would that world look like? Everyone would be trying the move, so it would no longer be any faster, as the left lane would be just as clogged up as the right. When everyone tried to merge back in, it would slow down the right lane even more, too. As a result, EVERYONE would have to wait longer to make it through a construction delay. Everyone acts in their own best interest, and everyone winds up worse off as a result.

We have social mores that label anyone who does the "pull out and speed ahead" move as a tool. Those social mores are what stop more people from doing the move- it's why 10% of the line is doing the move and not 100% of the line. If those mores were more powerful, if they were powerful to get that number down to 0%, then we'd all be even better off still. The conclusion from your construction zone scenario shouldn't be "what this world needs is more people doing that!", it should be "what this world needs is fewer people doing that!"

Some people benefit from tanking. The proper response isn't to join them in tanking, it's to try to shame them into never tanking again. No one should ever tank. Ever. For any reason. It opens up a Pandora's Box that leaves everyone worse off. Just say no.

 

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