I'm confused. Is Netter on the roster, or is he a practice squad player? If the latter, I didn't know that practice squad players dressed or travelled with the team. Does that mean he would be eligible to be put onto the field if everyone else in front of him goes down? I would assume so if he dresses, but then wouldn't that mean he's on the roster? As he appeared in any games this year? Even special teams?
Each NFL team may keep up to eight members on its "practice squad" in addition to the 53-member main roster. They consist mostly of rookies who were cut in training camps and borderline NFL-caliber players. Both rookies and young veterans are eligible for the practice squad. However, a player cannot participate on the practice squad for more than three seasons, he is eligible for a third season only if the team has at least 53 players on its active/inactive list for the duration of that player's employment, or have no prior accrued seasons in the NFL (an accrued season is six or more games on the active roster); or if he has accrued a year of NFL experience on a club's 53-man active roster. If the player was on the active list for fewer than 9 games during their "only Accrued Season(s)", he maintains his eligibility for the practice squad. Games in which a player is listed as the third-string quarterback (a designation that has been abolished as of 2011) do not count as being on the active list.
Practice squad players practice alongside regular roster players during the week, but they are not allowed to play in actual games. They can be paid considerably less than active squad players: The minimum salary from 2008 to 2010 is $5,200 per week (2008-2010) for 17 weeks, or $88,400 per season, in comparison to the NFL minimum rookie salary of $285,000. In 2012 the minimum salary for a practice squad player is/was $5700, and the minimum rookie salary in 2012 is/was $390,000. Some practice squad players are paid considerably more, however. In 2006, the New England Patriots paid third-year player Billy Yates the full $425,000 he would have earned on the active roster.
Practice squad players are free agents; they can be signed to any team's 53-man roster at any time during the season. In other words, NFL teams are free to "poach" other teams' practice squads without compensating the teams. Additionally, the NFL has a program through which foreign players may be assigned to teams' practice squads, called the International Practice Squad Program.
During a Super Bowl game, all practice squad members are activated and are eligible to participate in the final game in case any other player on the team gets injured. The remaining practice squad members qualify for a Super Bowl ring for remaining with the team after the season ends.
EvanstonCat wrote: I'm confused. Is Netter on the roster, or is he a practice squad player? If the latter, I didn't know that practice squad players dressed or travelled with the team. Does that mean he would be eligible to be put onto the field if everyone else in front of him goes down? I would assume so if he dresses, but then wouldn't that mean he's on the roster? As he appeared in any games this year? Even special teams?
He has not been active for any of the 49ers' games, but he has dressed for each one. The way he explained it, Harbaugh holds great values in his practice-squad players. More than any other organization, they are treated with respect and trusted as starters.
Not bad to work with probably the best OL in pro football for a year. The experience should help him crack a regular roster spot next year. We seem to have a pretty good number of OL in the pros - have for some time. I'd love to see Ward and Mulroe join them this spring. Lots of teams will be looking for OL - including the Bears and the Packers.