As the NFL attempts to reconfigure its offseason calendar in order to generate even more interest in the sport during periods when the sport isn’t being, you know, played, the foundation for one important change already has been laid.
As former Chiefs G.M. Scott Pioli said during Thursday’s edition of Pro Football Talk on NBC Sports Network, the NFL hopes to create a “signing day” for free agents, similar to the phenomenon that has arisen in recent years regarding the date in early February on which high school players pick their college destinations.
We’ve confirmed that the NFL has specifically proposed a “signing day” in communications with the NFLPA regarding a revised offseason calendar. As Pioli explained, the new three-day legal tampering period is aimed at setting the stage for a one-day bonanza of announcements of new destinations for free agents.
The problem, as a practical matter, with a contrived NFL signing day is that, during the three-day legal tampering period, word will emerge as to where a player plans to sign. Moreover, the first day of free agency already operates that way, since all sorts of illegal tampering ensures that players will know where they’ll be signing within hours after the market officially opens.
Still, the not-too-distant future could entail an NFL Network marathon broadcast featuring players sitting before a collection of officially-licensed New Era hats and placing on his head the hat corresponding with his new team.