We’ve heard from the league office regarding the confusing question of whether the Eagles were permitted to negotiate an agreement in principle with quarterback Vince Young, with an eye toward getting the deal signed after 6:00 p.m. ET Friday.
Said NFL spokesman Michael Signora, “Until a player appears on the transaction report, then any transaction is not official, including if the move has been discussed publicly, etc. So if a player is still a member of a club’s active roster — as Young is in this case — no other team can talk to him until he appears on that transaction report.”
It’s not an issue of clearing waivers, as it was initially characterized by Adam Schefter of ESPN. Young has five years of service, making him not subject to waivers, until after the trade deadline. (The fact that the 2011 League Year hasn’t begun doesn’t matter; after the Super Bowl, vested veterans re-acquire the ability to become free agents immediately upon being released.)
Still, the Eagles technically should not have contacted Young until he appeared on the daily transaction report issued by the league office. Since Young was cut after 4:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, he won’t appear on the report until Friday.
And so, in theory, the Titans could pursue tampering charges. But why would the Titans care? They’ve made it known they’re moving on. Given that they’ve got a new coach and new quarterbacks and new assistants and not much time to get ready for the season, whether the Eagles talked 20 hours too early to a guy they no longer want should be the least of their concerns.