Trades and Being Over Cap

As of now, the rules say:

"If a team has more than 25 rostered players, more than $400 in salary, or not enough cap space to roster 25 players, the team will be locked out of normal activities until a player is cut or moved off the team via trade. These activities include:

  • Setting lineups
  • Offering or accepting trades
  • Bidding on auctions"

How can a player on an over-cap team be moved off via trade if the team is locked out of offering or accepting trades? Is this intended? (I ended up over cap and am trying to assess options to make cap space LOL)

If you had a pending trade it will process. You can’t propose or accept new trades.


Your only option at this point is to cut some players to make your roster legal.

Couple of tips:

  1. Cutting $1 players in this instance won’t be helpful and, in fact, might be self-defeating because you need $1 free for every free roster spot.
  2. If you’re cutting more than one player, make a spreadsheet to keep track of stuff. You might be able to do it in your head, but it’s easy to make a mistake.
  3. On that spreadsheet, keep track of two salary values: the amount that you’ll free up immediately and the amount that you might free up if a player that you cut is re-auctioned. Remember that the immediate relief is 50% rounded up (e.g., an $11 cut frees up $5, not $6). You’ll free up the player’s full salary if/when he’s claimed or re-auctioned.
  4. Note that unless the player is claimed, it will take at least 72 hours for a player that you cut to be re-auctioned (24 hours for the player to clear waivers plus another 48 hours for the auction). Some leagues are very strict about making your roster legal ASAP (if so, this policy should be discussed beforehand and agreed to by everyone), although most will give you a 3-4 grace period if you need some transactions to settle to avoid gutting your team (at least in leagues that I’ve been in).
  5. There’s no guarantee that a player you cut will be claimed or re-auctioned, although if he’s a quality player than you can usually count on him getting re-auctioned.
  6. It sounds like it’s too late in this instance, but if you anticipate adding a player and need a few days for your roster to settle, then set your lineup ahead of time (you won’t be able to respond to developing news about injuries or whatever, but it will give you a bit of a cushion).
  7. If a player clears waivers and no one starts an auction for him, then a league message board post reminding people available sometimes will work.
  8. Sometimes your least bad option is to cut the player that you just won since it’s likely that he’ll be claimed and/or immediately re-auctioned after clearing waivers whereas the market for your other potential cuts is less established.

Nearly every new Ottoneu player finds themself in a position at some point in their first season where they add a player and don’t have an explicit plan for how to clear salary to afford him. In these instances, you almost always wind up having to cut a player that you’d rather not cut, including possibly the player that put you over the cap (see #8).