I am not sure that works with tug of war ropes, though, as they, given the forces used, are too thick to allow for that zig-zaggy bend.
I certainly don't see it in photos on http://www.tug-of-war.org.uk/towtactics.htm
The last player on each end can safely wrap the rope around themselves if they like. The rope behind them is slack, so the only tension on the rope is the tension they put on it themselves. Where people get into trouble is when they are somewhere in the middle where there is (significant)tension being applied to their section of rope by people on either side.