The NFL will implement a new variation of injured reserve this season, a temporary list specifically for players who test positive for COVID-19, according to a report by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
Placement on the list is immediate upon a positive test, and players are only able to be removed once they are medically cleared. Clubs can bring up practice squad players as replacements, and can return them to the practice squad without them hitting waivers.
Details are still emerging about the NFL/NFLPA deal: There’s a temporary IR for a COVID positive player & placement is immediate. His return is subject to medical clearance. A team may move up a P-squad player to replace him, then can return that player to the PS without waivers.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 26, 2020
The league just expanded practice squads to 16 total players on Saturday, which should provide the flexibility needed as team address the inevitable positive cases that will arise this season.
Rapoport added that the temporary IR is unlimited, meaning a club can give as many players the designation as is necessary.
While the league and NFLPA agreed to a revised CBA on Friday, the details of the agreement continue to be revealed. This COVID-19 IR news is the latest, but it likely will not be the last.