June 12, 2012; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions running back Jahvid Best (44) during mini camp at Detroit Lions training facility. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE
NFL teams made a series of roster moves to get their numbers down to the required 75 players by the Monday afternoon deadline, including putting players on IR and the PUP list. What are the rules governing those various roster tools used by teams?
NFL teams made the first round of required roster cuts on Monday, cutting their numbers from 90 to 75 and they'll be at it again on Friday night, cutting from 75 to 53 players. Getting down to 53 players isn't only cutting your players -- it's placing them on IR, keeping some on PUP list and cutting others to put them on the practice squad.
With cut down day coming, we thought it was important to Several of those roster moves were accomplished by putting players on injured reserve and a handful of other mechanisms teams use for managing their numbers.
Injured Reserve: There is one exception to the IR rule, which was implemented this week. Read here about the tweak to the IR rules but one player will be able to return after being placed on IR, with a few restrictions. For the rest of the players, IR means your season is done and you can not be put back on the active roster.
Physically Unable to Perform - Players on the regular season PUP list are eligible to return to action after Week 6. At that point, they can begin practicing with the team, and the team has a three-week window to activate that player or send him to injured reserve. To be eligible for the PUP list, a player must have been on the preseason PUP list and not practicing with his team.
Reserve/Non-Football Injury List - This is essentially the same as the PUP list, except it applies to injuries suffered for something other than football.
Waived/Injured - Teams can waive an injured player, which allows other teams to take a risk and claim that player on the waiver wire. If players clear waivers, which most do, their original team can then either put him on injured reserve or reach an injury settlement to part ways.
Practice Squad - On Sept. 1, the day after final roster cuts are due, teams can fill out an eight-man practice squad. To be eligible for the practice squad, a player must not have an accrued season of free agent eligibility.
Eligibility for the practice squad is limited to players who do not have an accrued season in the NFL, or were on an active list (53-man roster) for fewer than nine games during their only accrued seasons. Players that have served two seasons on a practice squad are eligible for a third season only if the team has at least 53 players on its active/inactive list for the duration of that player's employment.
Read more on practice squad rules.
The next round of cuts is due Friday, Aug. 31, by 9 p.m. ET. That is the deadline for team to go from 75 to 53 players on the roster. Stay tuned to SB Nation NFL for news and analysis around the waves of cuts.