The Patriots aren’t the only AFC East team taking a pause before deciding about signing undrafted free agents this offseason.
Bills General Manager Brandon Beane said on WGR 550 on Wednesday that the team is also holding off for the moment. In both cases, the teams are waiting for clarity from the league about the size of training camp rosters.
The NFL allowed teams to carry 90 players to camp, but they had to work in split squads with that many on the roster. Teams with 80 players could work as one squad and word on that came after the undrafted free agent signing period, which left the Bills and others cutting players to get to that limit. Beane wants to avoid doing that again.
“One of the things we’re doing research on is, last year, the league and the union made us reduce our rosters down to 80 to start camp, instead of 90,” Beane said, via Jay Skurski of the Buffalo News. “There’s been uncertainty whether it could be a different number than 90. Is it 85, is it 80? We’re going to try and monitor that before we push the roster up to 90.”
Preseason games are set to return this summer and Beane cited that as a reason to push the number of players back up to 90, but, as he also noted in the interview, other COVID-19 protocols would have to change in order for this offseason to look totally different than the last one.