On Monday, the Bills cut quarterback Trent Edwards. Since we generally were aware that the prior season’s standings apply to waiver claims for the first three weeks of a new season, we were intrigued by the priority that would apply to a player cut on the Monday of the third week, with 15 games completed and one game to play.
So we asked the league office. And we were told that the 2009 records will apply when awarding Edwards’ contract.
We’re now told that, because Edwards’ contract actually will be awarded on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 records will apply.
“Our clubs are confused,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said via e-mail, “meaning they read you religiously.”
It makes sense that the clubs would be confused; it’s a tricky issue of timing and Monday was the only day of the year in which the waiver procedures potentially would overlap.
As a practical matter, it means that (as Chris Mortensen of ESPN predicted last night) multiple waiver claims will be submitted for Edwards. Otherwise, teams wouldn’t be trying to obtain clarification as to the procedure.
It also means that the 0-3 49ers (who like Edwards) will have priority over the 2-1 Seahawks (who also have priority), even though the 49ers were 8-8 in 2009 and the Seahawks were 5-11.
Stay tuned. Edwards’ contract will be awarded to a new team at 4:00 p.m. ET today. The only safe bet at this point is that the team claiming him won’t be the Bills.
Then again, given some of the Bills’ decisions over the past few years, that bet may not be as safe as we think.