Fantasy Football Definition of "Cut"

A "cut" in fantasy football is a waiver wire cut, where you drop a player from your roster. Other terms for "cuts" are "drops", "waivers" and "waiver cuts". You'll cut a player when that player is injured or hasn't lived up to expectations, in order to select a free agent who has better prospects in the near future.

Making Too Many Cuts

Some fantasy football owners lose patience too quick with players and cut them from the team, and every fantasy football player who has played any length of time has cut a player one week, only to have that player go off for a huge game and enter the bidding process again. At the same time, some owners leave an ineffective player on their roster way too long, either out of pride (I drafted him; I can't be wrong) or simple indifference. Most good fantasy football teams are going to have steady turnover of the bottom fourth of their roster, churning through free agents until they find players of value, cutting those who don't perform.

Cutting Players in a Dynasty Leagues

Some dynasty leagues or large keeper leagues have rules to discourage cutting too many players during the season. For instance, I'm in a dynasty league where you only get to keep players the next year whom you drafted and kept on your roster all year (or who were on someone's roster all year and traded to you). Any free agents picked up one year return to the draft pool next year. Even players you drafted, then cut, then picked up again and kept to the end of the season become free agents. In this league, most teams still make cuts, but they keep a handful of spots (3 to 5 of 36 roster spots) available to add new free agents as the season unfolds, by making a few key cuts early in the season of the least valuable members of their team.

Cuts and Roster Limits

Most league require you to stay under a roster limit during the add/drop process. So if you add a player, you must immediately drop another player. So every free agent moves requires a cut be made from your roster. Knowing who to cut becomes a fantasy football strategy move.

First-Come, First-Served and the Cut Process

I've played in some fantasy football leagues with first-come, first-serve free agent rules throughout the season, with no breaks at all. In these leagues, I would suggest you set the waiver wire transactions to automatically be emailed to your inbox. Invariably, some team will cut a player that has no right being cut. If you get an email the instant this player is cut, you have a good chance of being the team that benefits from such a bonehead move (if you are near the computer a lot or you monitor your email often with your Blackberry or iPod). Another suggestion is to have player news emailed to your email address, so you'll learn of any new major injuries. This allows you to add the hottest new free agents to your roster, because there's always someone you can cut from your roster when a new fantasy football star is born.

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