Never have NFL practice squad rosters been more important than they are in 2020, when a global pandemic is threatening to impact how NFL teams manage their active rosters throughout the season. In the wake of Saturday’s NFL roster cuts deadline is a vital period for teams to build personnel contingency plans amid COViD-19.
Teams were given the green light to begin signing practice squad players at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, a full hour after the end of the waiver claim period for players released on roster cut-down day. But the rules for practice squad construction in 2020 are a little different because of the coronavirus threat.
MORE: Here’s how much practice squad players make
The collective bargaining agreement that the NFL and the NFL Players Association agreed upon in the spring increased the size of practice squad rosters from 10 players to 12 players for 2020. (It will increase again to 14 in 2022). That was before the COVID-19 outbreak reached the United States and started impacting sports operations.
Because positive coronavirus test results among NFL players are all but inevitable, it’s reasonable to anticipate more players missing games than usual in 2020. So the league agreed to expand practice squad rosters to 16 players, including six veterans (unlimited number of accrued seasons) rather than two, for this season.
Below are the team-by-team practice squad rosters that were assembled starting Sunday, plus more details on the rules and salaries for practice squad players.
NFL practice squad signings: 2020 rosters for all 32 NFL teams
We’re tracking live practice squad roster additions as teams announce their signings Sunday. Follow along below.
(Initial 2020 NFL practice squad rosters are subject to change throughout the season.)
Patriots practice squad
TE Jake Burt, K Justin Rohrwasser
Jets practice squad
OL James Murray
Bills practice squad
Dolphins practice squad
WR Antonio Callaway, QB Jake Rudock, CB Trae Hayes
Chiefs practice squad
QB Matt Moore
Broncos practice squad
OT Darrin Paulo, FB Jeremy Cox
Raiders practice squad
LB Javin White
Chargers practice squad
Steelers practice squad
Browns practice squad
QB Garrett Gilbert, CB A.J. Green
Ravens practice squad
Bengals practice squad
CB Winston Rose
Colts practice squad
Jaguars practice squad
Texans practice squad
WR Steven Mitchell Jr., OLB Davin Bellamy, DT Auzoyah Alufohai
Titans practice squad
Cowboys practice squad
DT Ron’Dell Carter, FB Sewo Olonilua, S Luther Kirk, LB Francis Bernard, DB Saivion Smith
Eagles practice squad
Giants practice squad
Washington practice squad
QB Steven Montez, S Jeremy Reaves, C Ross Pierschbacher, WR Cam Sims, WR Tony Brown
Packers practice squad
WR Reggie Begelton, LB Tipa Galeai, WR Darrius Shepherd, RB Dexter Williams
Bears practice squad
Vikings practice squad
WR Alexander Hollins
Lions practice squad
Seahawks practice squad
Rams practice squad
Cardinals practice squad
49ers practice squad
CB Tim Harris
Saints practice squad
LB Joe Bachie
Falcons practice squad
Panthers practice squad
Buccaneers practice squad
How much do NFL practice squad players make?
As laid out in the new CBA, there are two salary scales for practice squad players, one for players with two or fewer accrued seasons (the majority of practice squad players) and one for everybody else.
The first group of practice squad players — rookies, players with fewer than nine regular-season games during their only accrued season(s) and players who have earned no more than two accrued seasons — are paid on a fixed weekly salary that increases in each year of the current CBA.
Below are the fixed weekly salaries for most NFL practice squad players.
The second group basically consists of veterans; the NFL defines them as players with no limitations as to their number of earned accrued seasons. Teams in 2020 are allowed to keep up to six of these players on their 16-man practice squads.
These practice squad players receive a fixed weekly salary within the following minimum and maximum amounts over the duration of the current CBA.
|Year||Minimum weekly salary||Maximum weekly salary|
Practice squad player contracts do not provide for salary guarantees, bonuses, incentives or any compensation beyond the amounts above.
If a practice squad player is promoted to the active roster for a game, his weekly salary will be adjusted to 1/17 of the minimum annual salary for players with his number of accrued seasons.
Most NFL practice squad players are given help to find living situations, but not money. Per the CBA, if a team signs a player to its practice squad and he does not already live in the area, the team “shall make best efforts to provide the player an option for short-term, month-to-month housing at the player’s expense.”
NFL practice squad rules
Below are the players who are eligible to be added to practice squad rosters:
- Players who do not have an accrued season of NFL experience (rookies)
- Players who were on the active list for fewer than nine regular-season games during their only accrued season(s)
- Up to four players per team who have earned no more than two accrued seasons (no game limitations)
- Up to two (six in 2020) players per team with no limitations as to their number of earned accrued seasons
A player on a practice squad is free to sign with another team at any point, but a team that signs a player from another’s practice squad must add the player to its 53-man roster. There are no practice squad-to-practice squad transactions.
While that’s still the rule in 2020, during the pandemic, teams are allowed to protect up to four practice squad players each week from other teams.
Another new, pre-pandemic rule for 2020 as laid out by the CBA: Teams are allowed to promote one or two players from their practice squads to increase their rosters from 53 players to 55 players on game days. Any practice squad player promoted in such a way would revert to the practice squad roster after the game.
Previously, any practice squad player elevated to the active roster had to have his practice squad contract terminated and replaced by an NFL player contract. That’s still the case for any player promoted from the practice squad to the active roster on a permanent basis.
The NFL also established new practice squad rules that account for potential COVID-19 outbreaks on active rosters. If a practice squad player is elevated to the active roster because his team was given roster exemptions “due to confirmed or suspected cases of a contagious disease among its players,” then the player won’t be required to sign an active player contract. He will automatically revert to the practice squad after the game without going through waivers.
Note: The official language for all NFL practice squad rules, including a complete salary breakdown, can be found in Article 33 of the CBA.