Fantasy Football Definition of "Drop"

A "drop" is the same as a "cut" in fantasy football. When you drop a player, you have waived them from your fantasy football roster, usually in order to accommodate additional fantasy players being moved to your roster, either via free agency or trade. Weekly add/drops are a big part of most fantasy league's schedule, because that's when teams can dump the dead weight on their fantasy roster and add new fantasy prospects to their bench - or even starting lineup.

Drops and Free Agency

When you drop a player in fantasy football, that player almost always becomes a free agent. This means you are relinquishing your rights to the player, just like when a player is waived in the NFL, and any other team in your league can make a waiver claim on that player. Usually, players waived by one team are not picked up by another, because players being dumped generally have little to no value in fantasy football. When you drop a player and someone else in your league almost immediately adds them to their roster, that can be an "uh oh" moment, because that usually means the player has fantasy football value. This isn't always the case, since the team picking up your cast-offs might have a really bad roster and an upgrade to their roster might be a downgrade to their roster, or that rival owner simply might not know what they're doing.

Dropped Players and Locked Status

Sometimes, a player has to "clear waivers" to become a free agent in a fantasy football team. From the time a player is dropped until they are eligible to be picked up again, that player is said to be "locked". This only means that you and no one else in your league is allowed to add this player to their roster, or even make a waiver wire claim yet. Typically, locked status remains until all the games of that week are finished, upon which a new free agent period begins.

Locking players is generally done as a precaution against collusion. If two teams want to circumvent the veto rules some leagues put in place against unfair trades, those teams will agree to move a player from one roster to the next by doing a quick add/drop. The one owner trying to stack the other team will drop their valuable fantasy player. Then the other team owner will instantly go into the waiver system and pick up that dropped player, before anyone else in the league has a chance to perform an add-drop. When players are locked, though, everyone in the league has a chance to see that a player has been dropped, and then everyone has the ability to make their own waiver claim on that dropped player.

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