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Ethics of "cycling" players in football

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Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby thriftyrocker » Mon Oct 15, 2007 2:57 pm

In baseball it's generally agreed that "cycling" players is bad practice. That is adding players with no intention of starting them and dropping them the next day, thus preventing others from getting them.

How does this apply to fantasy football? Take this week where a lot of starting QBs are on bye. If a team left their starter in there and comes in on Monday to find 1) they're down by a couple points, 2) their backup already played and 3) Joey Harrington is available on the wire, then they could swap in Joey and likely win.

What if you're the other guy? Is adding Joey to the back of your bench bad practice if you're only doing it so the guy who left Peyton or Cutler in there against you won't be able to play him?
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby spodog » Mon Oct 15, 2007 5:00 pm

If you have room on your roster and a player is available (QB or whatever), then it is fine to pick them up and put them on your bench.

There are so many injuries in FB, realtive to baseball, that you always need to have other players on your bench ready to go into your lineup
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Re: Ethics of

Postby The Lung » Tue Oct 16, 2007 5:02 pm

I believe in fair play and sportsmanship. As commissioner in several leagues, if I saw a manager cycling players, such as picking up and dropping all available starting QBs in order to put them all on waivers and prevent another manager from grabbing a starting QB, the offending manager would be banned.

However, if your scenario happened in my league the argument could be made that the manager picked up Harrington in an honest attempt to improve his own team and not hamper the fair play of the other team. Unless the owner picked up Harrington and dropped him immediately to put him on waivers, or came right out and announced to the league that he picked up Harrington for his bench for the sole reason so that the other manager couldn't play him, it would appear perfectly legit to me.
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby spodog » Tue Oct 16, 2007 6:33 pm

I didn't realize you meant picking them up then immediately dropping them to lock them out.

That is really an issue with your rules. We impose fees for each waiver acquisition as a means of curbing this goofy behaivor in our serious leagues.
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby sLim » Tue Oct 16, 2007 7:11 pm

i think its just part of the strategy of the game...shouldnt be frowned upon...
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby Battlecreek Dragon » Tue Oct 16, 2007 11:01 pm

I agree that picking up a player to deny another owner from getting him is perfectly legal, even if it is widely known that that is why it was done. That having been said, I think you should have to carry said player on your roster for at least a week. I do not like the practice of churning the free agent list just to put players on waivers so no one else can grab them. It should be addressed in the rules of your league. If your rules do not prohibit this activity, it is legal, but I think somewhat unethical.
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby ironcityboy88 » Fri Oct 19, 2007 5:47 pm

Depending on the amount of roster spaces available, a team can't cycle that many players anyway, otherwise the player's he drops to play "keepaway" with will also all be on waivers thus allowing other teams a chance at his players.
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby aqua » Fri Oct 19, 2007 7:59 pm

I think this is against the spirit of the game and, although our league has no formal rule on the subject, I would impose one if driven to do so. The obvious solutions are:
1) a limited number of transactions allowed on the year
2) if it is a money league, make them pay per transaction
3) some sites have an options that forces someone you pick up to stay on your roster for a while, like at least 3days for example. I think fleaflicker has this so depends on your site.

you can also just let people know this isn't allowed and give a warning to the league and punish people who violate it (by locking them from making any roster additions for a week or two).

just my thoughts.
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Re: Ethics of "cycling" players in football

Postby Battlecreek Dragon » Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:45 pm

ironcityboy88 wrote:Depending on the amount of roster spaces available, a team can't cycle that many players anyway, otherwise the player's he drops to play "keepaway" with will also all be on waivers thus allowing other teams a chance at his players.


You could do it with one expendable guy. If you wanted to drop player A for player Z, then....

Drop player A, pick up B
Drop B, pick up C
Drop C, pick up D
Drop D, pick up E
and so on until you finally pick up Z, which is the one you really wanted. Now A-Y are all on waivers

Totally against the spirit of the game, but not against the rules if not addressed in the rules.
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Re: Ethics of

Postby RCR » Sat Oct 20, 2007 9:43 am

The Lung wrote:However, if your scenario happened in my league the argument could be made that the manager picked up Harrington in an honest attempt to improve his own team and not hamper the fair play of the other team. Unless the owner picked up Harrington and dropped him immediately to put him on waivers, or came right out and announced to the league that he picked up Harrington for his bench for the sole reason so that the other manager couldn't play him, it would appear perfectly legit to me.



Is there actually an ethical issue in putting someone on your bench for the week so another player can't use him (even if you announced your intention)? Our league (as most I assume) is really thin at RB, and EVERY team scoops up hot RBs on the WW mainly so others DON'T get him. Often they are dropped the following week as the next Wire Wonder shows up. In the Harrington example above, I would think it smart to reduce the available pool of QBs if that was the obvious weakspot of your opponent. I would draw the line at "churning" that pool. That would certainly provide motivation to owners to look ahead to possible scheduling/bye issues and adjust rosters accordingly, thereby increasing competition.
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