NFL Free Agency and CBA Timeline: Free Agent Negotiations start Tuesday, Training Camp opens on Thursday

We have another timeline! Timelines are flying everywhere, but this seems to be the definitive one. This timeline should be in the CBA itself. It was reported by NFL Network and confirmed by Greg Bedard as well as ESPN. So, these are the key points in that timeline: 

 

  • Free agency lists will be distributed at 6 p.m. ET today
  • The doors of facilities will open for voluntary team work tomorrow. Only players under contract are allowed to enter team facilities.
  • Rookie signings will be allowed starting 10 a.m. ET on Tuesday, trades will be allowed as well.
  • Teams can negotiate with all free agents starting Tuesday, there will not be a grace period for a team's own free agents. However, actual signings won't be allowed until Friday. 
  • The waiver wire will open on Thursday at 4 p.m. ET, which is when players can first be cut and waived. There's a delay here to give teams time to get things in order and start to comply with the salary cap, which they have to do once the waiver wire starts. 
  • Free agency will open on Friday at 6 p.m. ET, which is when transactions can first be filed to the league.
  • Training camps for all teams could open on Friday. Another date named is 15 days before the start of the first preseason game, which would be Thursday for the Bucs. It's not clear which date is correct, as both are mentioned in the CBA. While training camp could start on Thursday, free agents won't be in camp until Friday at the earliest. At this point it seems to be the case that Thursday will be the date training camp opens. 
  • The deadline for the NFLPA to recertificate and officially ratify the CBA is August 4.
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