June 23, 2011
Most of the NFL news day has been dominated by leaking tidbits about how both sides really like each other now, and that a deal is closer to getting done. I don't know how much any of that means, or if it's even true, especially since there are also whispers to the contrary.
One moderately interesting specific thing that's emerged though, is the possibility of expanded training camp rosters. The current limit is 80, but with lost time potentially being a factor, some general managers would like to push that up to about 90 this year. From the NFL Network's Jason La Canfora:
There is concern among many coaches and executives about how fit players will be whenever they report, and the suspicion among many is that there will be a rash of injuries. Teams will need to have enough bodies around to sustain the rush. Furthermore, with undrafted free agency now coming deep in the offseason instead of directly after the draft, the time to work with and evaluate those players will be significantly compromised as well.
To that end, some general managers would support expanding the practice squad by a spot or two as well, though that topic has not been broached by the competition committee to this point.
La Canfora also quotes one general manager as saying that he doesn't know how any other GM would oppose the idea. I can't imagine why they would, either, but I could picture an owner -- Mike Brown(notes) of the Bengals comes to mind -- who might have a small fit about having to pay 10 extra guys.
I don't see a downside, really. A team gets to look at an additional 10 guys, and who knows, maybe a diamond emerges from the rough, and one of the extras makes a roster. If not, you've still got 10 more bodies to absorb punishment through training camp and take reps in preseason games that you just want to end.
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