The NFL and the NFL Players Association have agreed to expand practice squads for the 2014 and 2015 seasons. The current rules will be reinstated in 2016 if an extension to the new agreement is not made.
Starting at noon on August 31st, teams will be allowed to add up to 10 players to their practice squads, up from 8 in previous years. Here’s a breakdown of the NFL practice squad eligibility rules under the current system from the collective bargaining agreement.
- To be eligible, a player can not have been on the practice squad for more than 2 seasons.
- A player may qualify for a third practice squad season if their team maintains no less than 53 players on the active/inactive list at all times.
- Serving on the practice squad for three or more regular season or post season games constitutes a practice squad season.
- A player cannot have an accrued NFL season. An accrued season is comprised of having been on the active list during 9 or more games in a season.
The expanded practice squads add a couple new eligibility rules. First, what constitutes a practice squad season has changed. Instead of the 3 game requirement, it’s now 6. Secondly, the additional 2 players who can be added to the practice squad, may have 2 accrued seasons. This is great news obviously, as it allows so many more players to be added to a practice squad who were not previously eligible.
Practice squad players earn a minimum of $6,300 a week in 2014. That’s $107,100 for a player on the practice squad for the full 17 weeks.
Don’t forget- for a player to be placed on a practice squad, he must first clear waivers.