Fantasy Football Etiquette: Five Important Tips

Every year millions of men play fantasy football for the camaraderie and male bonding that it provides. The several months of fantasy competition allows for guys to stay in contact with each other despite their otherwise busy and demanding lives.

Unfortunately certain players occasionally create unnecessary frustration for everyone else in the league. Although this may be unintentional, it still diminishes some of the intended fun involved with fantasy football.

To avoid becoming “that guy” it is a good idea to understand that some unwritten rules of behavior do apply. Here are five key points of fantasy football etiquette to keep in mind for this season and many years to come.

1. Know the Rules
Each league has its own set of regulations that dictate such things as point scoring, transaction limits and roster size. A person unfamiliar with the rules might feel “cheated” when blocked from trying to pick four quarterbacks when the limit might be three.

Some owners may then start to whine and complain about such a situation. Nobody in a fantasy league should have to deal with that type of childish behavior.

2. No Ridiculous Trade Offers
The purpose of fantasy player trading is for two teams to help each other satisfy individual roster needs, just as it is the NFL. Proposing a third-string running back in exchange for a superstar like Peyton Manning is obviously foolish.

An owner receiving such a trade offer might be insulted that someone thinks so little of his fantasy football knowledge. Having to read and sort through several of these inane “deals” from the same player may eventually leave an owner very annoyed.

3. Stay Involved
A person is initially accepted into a fantasy league based on the premise that they will compete. Although certain teams will not meet owner expectations, it is unfair to start ignoring a roster or quit playing altogether.

Chances are that an ignored team will not be very competitive. This gives an unfair advantage to other owners when they face the team in a head-to-head match up.

4. Control Smack Talk
Most leagues give players an opportunity to take some friendly jabs at each other via typed messages. Even though many guys love this smack talk option, players should still show some respect and restraint.

Someone gloating too much over a victory quickly loses any humor or novelty and becomes annoying. Also obscene language may not be tolerated, especially by a father who may be sharing the fantasy experience with his young son.

5. Pay on Time
Prize money is awarded in many fantasy football leagues, depending upon how owners have agreed to reward success. If cash is involved, each player is expected to contribute an equal amount at the season’s outset.

If someone ultimately does not pay, those who win will receive less prize money than what was originally promised. Money may also be needed for absorbing league costs like online registration fees or beer bought for a live draft.

Most fantasy football leagues are designed so that everyone can enjoy himself while playing. However, to achieve maximum enjoyment all players must cooperate with each other and respect the league.

Playing fantasy football should be extremely fun for all team owners. Everyone in a league should keep this in mind from the beginning of the season until the last game is played.