Every single one of the 32 NFL teams, including the Minnesota Vikings, have completed their initial cuts to get their rosters from 90 down to 53. That means it’s time to turn our attention to the Vikings putting together their 10-man practice squad. With this post, we’re going to give everyone the ins and outs as to how the practice squad works.
Teams will be able to make waiver claims on players that were waived on Friday and Saturday until 11:00 AM Central time on Sunday. (We went over how the waiver process works in an earlier post.) At 12:00 PM Central time, teams will be able to start claiming players for their practice squads.
How many players are eligible for the practice squad?
Each practice squad can have up to 10 players. These players practice with the team, but are not eligible to play on game days, and generally do not travel with the team to road games.
Who is eligible for the practice squad?
In order to sign with a practice squad, a player must meet one of the following requirements:
- Have no prior Accrued Seasons in the NFL (An accrued season is six or more games on the active roster);
- Have one prior Accrued Season in which the player was on the 46-man active roster for no more than eight games;
- Each club will be permitted to sign a maximum of four Practice Squad players who have earned no more than two accrued seasons of free agency credit. (This used to be two such players, but the number has now expanded to four.)
- If 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.
- A player has served one season on the practice squad if he is on the practice squad for at least six games. The rule previously required three games on the practice squad roster.
How much do practice squad players get paid?
The salary for a player on the practice squad is now $7,200/week, minimum. A team can pay a player on their practice squad more, and you’ll often see this happen if another team expresses interest in a particular player.
Practice Squad player rights
When a player is on a practice squad, he is paid by that particular team. He is also free to sign with another team’s 53-man roster. A player can not sign with his current team’s next opponent within six days of those teams meeting (10 days in the case of a bye week). A player can not move from one team’s practice squad to another team’s practice squad unless his current team releases him first.
Practice Squad player promotion
When a team promotes a player from a practice squad to the active roster (whether it’s their own practice squad or another team’s), the player has to be paid for three weeks of at least league minimum salary. The team can release the player before those three weeks, but they still have to pay them that three weeks worth of salary.
Once we get some word on who the Vikings will be signing to the practice squad, we will bring that to you. While there have been reports of players that the team would like to bring back to the practice squad, they can’t officially do anything until after noon Central time on Sunday.