The NFL’s longtime format of four preseason games could be set to change as soon as next year, Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com reports. A lot of talk’s occurred about altering the length of the preseason, with some in league circles wanting to ditch the fourth game. Pointing to the number of injuries to starter-level players that occur during meaningless contests and the public relations hits the NFL’s taken about the safety of its game, others see no reason more than two are necessary.
Additional practices, including joint workouts, are among the ways the league could bypass coaches’ concerns about not having enough evaluation time, La Canfora notes. The league remains committed to implementing a plan for a developmental league or an in-season academy that would help the lower-tier players hone their skills without having to do so for teams come August.
La Canfora believes the preseason could change as soon as next year, and be drastically different within five years, but doesn’t see a spring developmental league on the immediate horizon since the NFLPA would have to sign off on that.
Here’s more from around the league as teams get their backups ready for the final night of exhibition tilts.
- Multiple quarterbacks being lost for either the season or a significant part of it has inflated the value of backups on the trade market. La Canfora notes the Buccaneers, Bengals and Browns are not likely to part with respective No. 2 signal-callers Mike Glennon, A.J. McCarron and Josh McCown for anything less than a Day 2 draft pick, with the possibility a team holds out for a first-round selection. Each team would prefer to keep their backups, La Canfora writes.
- Mark Sanchez could qualify for this above discussion, though it’s highly unlikely the Broncos would receive a Day 2 pick for him with $4.5MM and just one season left on his contract. Troy Renck of Denver7 reports (on Twitter) a Sanchez resolution could come by Friday. The Broncos have engaged in efforts to try and trade Sanchez this week after naming Trevor Siemian the Week 1 starter.
- Dashon Goldson‘s deal with the Falcons is a one-year, $1.5MM deal with $250K guaranteed, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today (on Twitter). $500K of his money is tied to per-game active bonuses.
- The Saints‘ deal with Paul Kruger is a one-year, $3MM pact worth up to $5MM with incentives, a league source told ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter. Before his release, he was under contract through next season at $6.5MM this year and $7MM next year with Cleveland. The Saints will have to carve out some cap space to make way for Kruger’s deal and they’ll likely do that through contract restructuring.
Zach Links contributed to this report