NFL Expands Rosters Ahead of Draft

As he prepares for the start of the NFL Draft on Thursday, Miami general manager Jeff Ireland suddenly has 10-additional roster spaces with which to play. Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

The NFL yesterday voted to expand the roster limit to 90 players through the preseason. Previously, the limit had been 80 players, meaning there are suddenly 10 additional roster slots as of yesterday, that weren't there Sunday. This is great news for those players looking for a chance to make it into a training camp.

It also could mean teams are more willing to trade down in the draft, having the extra roster spot for the extra draft pick they would receive.

The preseason schedule will continue to have two roster cuts, with the first in August, taking the roster down to 75 players. The final cut day will ake place aft the final preseason game, and will set the 53-man roster for the season. The day after the final cuts will allow teams to fill their eight-man practice squad.

The expanded roster could have immediate ramifications when it comes to the Miami Dolphins. Yesterday, the team announced linebackers Ernie Sims and Omar Gaither both had visited the team facilities. With the 10 additional roster positions, one, or both, of those players could be signed, without the Dolphins having to worry about releasing someone.

The 90-man roster will include all active, inactive, exempt-listed, reserve, unsigned drafted players, and unsigned franchise tagged. The expanded roster should not effect the salary cap space available, as only the top paid 51-players count toward the salary cap.

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