The NFL lockout is officially over, and no one is happier than this Patriots fan. Yesterday, I posted a tentative timeline of what the week would look like post-lockout, but here is a more updated timeline, including some Patriots notes:
- Today: Teams can go to 90-man rosters and will receive official free agent lists.
- Tuesday, July 26: Teams can start discussing trades (Could we see some movement with Logan Mankins if he’s done with New England?). Teams can also start signing draft picks and undrafted rookie free agents beginning at 10 a.m. Teams can begin negotiating with free agents, though they cannot officially sign until Friday. Players that are already signed can enter team facilities. We will likely be hearing about done deals with free agents before the signings become official on Friday. The Pats are about $7 million under the new salary cap of about $120.4 million. That cap space could increase with some restructuring of deals and/or player cuts.
- Wednesday, July 27: Players can begin reporting to training camps 15 days prior to the first preseason game. That includes the Patriots, who have an early preseason game against Jacksonville. The Pats have the earliest reporting date in the AFC East for training camp. Miami begins on Thursday, Buffalo on Friday, and the Jets don’t report for training camp until Sunday…advantage Patriots?
- Thursday, July 28: Teams can begin cutting players at 4 p.m. The top possible Patriot cut is OL Nick Kaczur, who is scheduled to make over $4 million and may be limited by the back injury suffered last year in training camp.
- Friday, July 29: Free agent signings can be sent from teams to league offices at 6 p.m. From there upon league approval, I believe those free agent signings can join their new teams in camp.
- Thursday, Aug. 4: This is the deadline for re-certification of the union and ratification of the new CBA by the players. That should just be a formality by that point, as the NFL will be well underway by then.