Home / frontfantasy / ESPN Continues Incompetence By Eliminating Fantasy Football Offline Draft App

ESPN Continues Incompetence By Eliminating Fantasy Football Offline Draft App

[2019 UPDATE: A Fantasy Consigliere subscription now gives access to Excel spreadsheets (and many more features including top-five draft rankings from last season) to help you run your draft seamlessly offline.]



The declining interest in ESPN is real. Some might deny it, but if you talk to everyday people, many have stopped watching the network entirely. Despite this, ESPN remains the most popular site when it comes to hosting fantasy football leagues.


However, there have been some major issues during the years with ESPN’s fantasy football hosting. The entire box scores have crashed for large stretches. There was not a schedule randomization option for years (though schedules can now be randomized with a trick: check and uncheck the “Randomize Schedule” option, and it usually works). And the addition of ads on the FantasyCast has enraged users.


This year, another big issue has suddenly popped up for many of those hosting their fantasy football leagues on ESPN.


The popular Offline Draft App has been discontinued.


For those unaware, ESPN’s Offline Draft App was a tool that allowed league commissioners to work a virtual draft board on their computer or laptop, with options like a draft-pick timer, pausing the draft, and undoing picks.


There was a player board (with all the available players), a roster board (showing each team’s squad), and a draft summary just like the normal draft boards many people buy each year. Basically, it was like the traditional cardboard draft board with stickers, but it had supped-up options, making things easy on everyone. Internet connection wasn’t even necessary, and league commissioners could upload the draft results instantly when the draft was completed (or when they got internet connection).


But like a mid-night robbery, ESPN took away what is arguably their best feature without telling anyone. Those that have held early drafts and were planning on using the Offline Draft App—which they might have done for the last few years—were in for an unpleasant surprise on draft day.


A quick search on Twitter shows a few cases of what people are dealing with.






Despite these complaints earlier in the month, ESPN did not make any announcement to league commissioners or anyone else that plays ESPN Fantasy Football, instead opting to tell people after they find out about the issue themselves.









There are more complaints, with users using stronger language to display their displeasure.


I feel so bad for those that had no idea ESPN was planning on discontinuing the feature, especially the league commissioners that were then put in a tough position trying to run their draft. The elimination of the Offline Draft App again displays the incompetence of leadership at ESPN. It’s one thing to get rid of the Offline Draft App, but it’s another thing to do it without telling your millions of users.


And it shows how out of touch ESPN is, which has been the case for a while now.



  • Jeremy

    I tried to download the app yesterday and got stonewalled. I searched online and found nothing….until your article came up. I’m in five leagues on ESPN, two of which we do offline drafts. I’m going to do everything I can to convince my leagues to leave that craphole.

  • Ric

    WTF!!! I was up all night trying to adjust my internet settings, trying different web browsers!!! There is a free draft board you can download from Microsoft called LiveDraftBoard. I’m going to give it a try. ESPN sucks, changing drafts next year to different provider.

  • Ladd

    I’m done, my time is money, I invest a ton as it is as a commissioner… for ESPN to not even give advanced warning to LM’s is beyond unprofessional. I will figure something out for my league, obviously NOT using ESPN for our league any more is first, but I’m a vindictive SOB, I’m boycotting ESPN from this day forward – Join me!

  • Dmagoo20

    I was extremely disappointed in espn for removing this tool and I found out an hour before draft. I will not be using espn next year unless they bring it back

  • Jay

    I just learned that the baseball app claims 12 GS is the limit for a team, but if you use 11/12 by Sunday morning, the app will allow you to load up on Starting pitchers on Sunday – and end up using as many as you want. I complained to ESPN, and their “help” told me yeah, it’s allowed, so the guy who does it is “smart”. Cheating is smart! Great job ESPN. They TOTALLY suck!!

  • ESPN continues its incompetence by eliminating the fantasy football offline draft app. This is a huge loss for fantasy football fans who rely on this app to manage their teams.

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