It is the offseason and this is where we put on our GM hats and work on our teams for the upcoming year. This article will outline key dates coming up and some thoughts I have on why they are important.
January 15: Deadline to declare for the NFL Draft.
A list of players who declared will be sent to clubs on January 19. The all-time record for underclassmen declaring is 107 (2016).
January 20: East-West Shrine Game
January 27: Senior Bowl
These two games might be two of the most important jump-off dates for putting together our initial information. We will get formal heights, weights, and hand sizes from the Senior prospects who attend these games. It is important to remember Twitter will be an echo chamber of information coming out and no one will have the same opinion of players. The biggest takeaways should be the measurements and NOT the game’s results.
February 15: AJ McCarron grievance being heard.
I added this date because it will be significant to the quarterback landscape this offseason. According to a post written by Josh Edwards (@JEdwar247) of 247, “the Alabama product passed Cincinnati's post draft evaluation but the team placed him on the non-football injury list. His argument is that he was healthy enough to be activated during training camp, which would have rendered him active and available for every game during his rookie season. Instead, he did not accrue enough games played. He is currently scheduled to be a restricted free agent, which means the Bengals control his fate. He wants a chance to start somewhere else” (CLICK HERE to read the post on 247.com). It should also be noted the Browns tried to trade for McCarron at the deadline and could be players for him if he becomes an Unrestricted Free Agent.
February 20: Clubs can designate Franchise or Transition Players.
February 27-March 5: NFL Scouting Combine
The “Underwear Olympics” and another one of the key points of the draft process. Other than Pro-Days, this will be the one opportunity for NFL prospects to display their physical gifts. Again, it would be easy to simply take away what happens at Lucas Oil Stadium as gospel, but these young men will be given one or two days to go through hell. We shouldn’t completely forget a prospects body of work and ONLY look at the physical and athletic measurements.
March 6: Deadline for clubs to designate Franchise or Transition Players.
March 12-14: Clubs can begin negotiating with Unrestricted Free Agents
March 14: Deadline for clubs to exercise player options.
Generally we start to hear rumblings during these days on where a Free Agent will land. The 2018 Free Agent Tracker is one of the best lists for these players and is written by Evan Silva (@EvanSilva). CLICK HERE to read
March 14: Deadline for clubs to submit qualifying offers to their Restricted Free Agents with expiring contracts to retain a Right of First Refusal/Compensation and for clubs to submit tenders to Exclusive Rights Free Agents.
March 14: NFL trading period begins.
April 20: Deadline for Restricted Free Agents to sign offer sheets.
April 26-28: 2018 NFL Draft
STAY TUNED TO DYNASTYHAPPYHOUR.COM TO READ MY 2018 SCOUTING REPORTS.