Most of the focus at the NFL roster cuts deadline is on the players going out from their teams, but it’s just as important to consider who may be coming in — and which players could be returning to the practice squad, should they clear waivers. So where do the New Orleans Saints stand?
At this point in the NFL’s calendar the waiver priority is determined by the 2022 NFL draft order, set prior to any trades. So while the Saints made their first selection at No. 12, they won’t have the twelfth pick on the waiver wire — they got to No. 12 by trading up from No. 16, which they acquired after moving up from No. 18. So New Orleans is right in the middle of the pack. Seventeen other teams will have the opportunity to file a waiver claim for any players they like after the roster cuts deadline.
That’s less-than-ideal, but you’ve got to play with the hand you’re dealt. Expect the Saints to try and snag some players off of waivers, but I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting to see if they successfully land many of them.
So what’s the deal with the practice squad? Players with fewer than six accrued seasons will be subject to waivers, and if they aren’t claimed they will be eligible to sign with any team’s practice squad. Many of the players the Saints will sign to their practice squad will come from their own roster cuts, but they always bring in two or three (or four or five) new faces. And it’s very common for them to churn that unit throughout the season to see who sticks. Veteran players who have met the accrued-seasons threshold may immediately sign with whoever they please, and teams are allowed to sign up to six veterans to the practice squad (with the other ten spots reserved for first- and second-year players).
There we go. Pay close attention to which players are let go by other teams around the league on Tuesday, but stay tuned to see who ends up where throughout the week. It’ll take some time for the Saints and all their rivals to sort things out.