NFL Sets Important Dates for The 2021 Season


The NFL's Football Operations issued a list of important dates for the 2021/2022 season.  I have summarized the dates and descriptions I deem important in the table below.  The Covid opt out deadline and the last day for Franchised players to reach a deal have both passed, so I omitted them in the table.

One thing I noticed is that the PUP is still 6 games long but little is mentioned about the injured reserve list.  I have yet to see any information on whether the NFL and the Union plan to keep the three-week IR list, and the NFL has acknowledged that no decision with the Union has been reached.  The NFL's list still has the language requiring teams to decide which players will be designated as eligible to return, but that is apparently subject to change. 

Another item of interest is the series of mini-cutdowns.  Within a few days of the first preseason game, there is a cutdown from 90 players to 85 and then another cutdown to 80 players after the second preseason game.  I have no idea what the rationale for this change may have been.

07-20-21 Earliest day rookies can report to training camp.
07-27-21 First day of training camp.  Practices on July 28, 29, 30 and 31.
08-02-21 Practice Open to public - August 2, 3 and 5.
08-07-21 Family Night - Open to public in Lambeau Field for a fee.
08-10-21 any unsigned drafted rookies can no longer be traded and can only sign with the drafting team until the 2022 draft.
08-10-21 Practices Open to the Public: August 10, 11 and 12.
08-14-21 First Preseason Game: Packers versus the Houston Texans at Lambeau.
08-17-21 Mini-cut down: 90 players down to 85
08-18-21 Joint practices with the NY Jets on August 18 and 19.  Both are open to the public.
08-21-21 Second Preseason Game: GB vs. NYJ at Lambeau.
08-24-21 Mini-cutdown: 85 players to 80.
08-28-21 Third Preseason Game: GB versus Buffalo in Buffalo.
08-31-21 Cut Down: 80 to 53 players.  The Packers must place players on PUP, IR, NFI and make waiver claims.
09-01-21 At 4:00 p.m EST, GB can start signing players to the PS and designate players eligible for return from IR.
09-05-21 Final day of training camp.
09-12-21 First regular season game: GB at Saints.
09-28-21 Priority for waiver claims becomes based on current win/loss records rather than the previous season.
10-18-21 Players can be activated from PUP or NFI with a 3 week roster exemption.  Can play 10-24-21 game.
11-02-21 Trade deadline.  Players who are traded are not subject to waiver claims.
11-03-21 Players with 4 pension-credited seasons are subject to waivers through the end of the postseason.
11-16-21 Deadline to sign 2021 drafted players.  If unsigned after 4:00 p.m., such a player cannot play at all in 2021.
12-05-21 Week 13 is GB's Bye Week.
01-08-22 Prorations of signing bonuses in extensions do not count against the 2021 salary cap.
01-10-21 Earliest date teams can sign rookies drafted in 2019 or UDFAs signed in 2020 to extensions.
  Practices open to the public: Aug 2, 3, 5, 7 (Family Night), 10, 11, 12, and Joint Practices on Aug. 18, 19.

Be aware that if the Packers are forced (or just elect) to move practice inside, that practice will not be open to the public.  The training camp schedule is based on reporting from which notes that dates are subject to change.

I included the dates regarding unsigned draft picks.  So far, Amari Roberts remains unsigned, but then, so are twenty-seven other third round picks.  I have no reason to think Amari Rodgers won't sign in time by July 20, or failing that date, in time for training camp itself.

Let me know in the comments if there are any important dates I excluded or otherwise did not list!


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1 points

Comments (3)

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

July 20, 2021 at 12:31 am

I have been advised that another website indicates that players can't be activated from the PUP and NFI lists until October 25, 2021. The link to NFL Operations notes mid-October, but explains that players can be activated 6 calendar days prior to the week 7 game. The week seven game is Sunday, October 24, so six days earlier is 10-18. IDK: looks correct to me.

I also omitted a few other dates. For example, I didn't list when franchise players can't play anymore for their own team since that isn't applicable to the Packers.

When signing bonus prorations on extension don't count in 2021 is based on precedent, so that is subject to clarification later. I wanted to put it in because the Packers might want to extend several players while also not wanting their signing bonus prorations to count in both 2021 and the 2022 league years. The cap is already tight for 2022. I am really thinking about Tonyan and MVS since their cap numbers are too small to realistically reduce in 2021. Extending Adams right now might make sense since the Packers can gain $6M in 2021 cap space at the expense of perhaps $14M or more in 2022. Probably a net of $10M give or take a few million.

2 points
PatrickGB's picture

July 20, 2021 at 11:13 am

I’m so confused.

0 points
Thegreatreynoldo's picture

July 20, 2021 at 06:53 pm

This article is essentially a PSA providing information. If you are confused after reading it, then the article utterly failed.

OTOH, if you cannot follow the NFL's rationales for doing some of the things that they do, join the club.

1 points