NFL to Allow Unlimited Promotions from Practice Squad to Active Roster for Playoffs

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVDecember 15, 2021

NFL logo on the field during an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Rick Osentoski)
AP Photo/Rick Osentoski

The NFL has changed its rules for practice-squad players, allowing unlimited promotions to the main roster for the playoffs, per Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

Players were previously capped at two promotions before requiring either a new contract or being subject to waivers. The move provides more roster flexibility while enabling teams to protect their players.

Tom Pelissero of NFL Network released the memo sent to teams:

Tom Pelissero @TomPelissero

Here’s more on the change, which means a player who’s already been a standard elevation twice can keep going up and down from the active roster in the playoffs without being subject to waivers. <a href="https://t.co/JRSARZM0Uv">pic.twitter.com/JRSARZM0Uv</a>

This change is in effect for only the 2021 postseason.

Teams have been forced to use more of their depth chart this season between injuries and missed time due to COVID-19 restrictions. As of Wednesday, there are more than 90 players across the NFL on the COVID-19/reserve list.

The result has been more promotions for practice-squad players to fill roster spots at the last minute.

As Darren Urban of the Arizona Cardinals' official site noted, linebacker Joe Walker has been a regular contributor despite spending the year on the practice squad. The 29-year-old has appeared in eight games this year for Arizona.

The Tennessee Titans have needed even more help, using 86 different players already this season, an NFL record dating back to 1993.