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NFL Roster Cuts 2013: Deadline and Practice Squad Rules

When do teams have to cut down, and which players can join the practice squad?

Al Messerschmidt

Like every other NFL team, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have to cut their 75-man roster down to 53 players by tomorrow. So what are the rules, and who can they put on the practice squad?

What's the deadline? 6 p.m. ET on Saturday, August 31.

Can teams make cuts earlier? Yes, absolutely. However, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have historically waited for the deadline itself to announce cuts. Reports of cuts will leak out sooner, but may be false.

How many players must they cut? The Buccaneers must cut 22 players to get to the 53-man roster limit.

What are the practice squad rules? A player who is to be added to the practice squad must be cut first. Other teams will have the opportunity to sign them to their roster, or even sign them to their practice squads if the player doesn't want to stick with the Bucs. The team cannot simply put a player on their practice squad -- there's a very real risk of losing that player. The Bucs, as every other team, have eight practice squad spots.

Who can join the practice squad? Players who have no accrued seasons in the NFL, or who were active for fewer than nine games during their only accrued season(s).

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