The History of NFL Free Agency

Below is a brief history of free agency, and at times the lack thereof, in the NFL. The Reserve Rule (1920-1946) The reserve rule allowed teams with right to resign a player in perpetuity. Players could not move on to another team by choice. Players really had three options: play for the same team, get... Continue Reading →

NFL Contracts Explained: Option Bonus

An option bonus is similar to a roster bonus. However, rather than receiving money for remaining on a team on a certain date, the team has the “option” to pay the bonus or terminate the player’s contract. When an option bonus is exercised, it is subject to probation like a signing bonus. If the option... Continue Reading →

NFL Contracts Explained: Signing Bonus

A signing bonus, as the name suggests, is an upfront payment a player receives to sign his contract. When it comes to salary cap accounting rules, signing bonuses and P5 salaries are completely different. The amount a player gets to sign can be prorated or spread across the life of the contract (up to a... Continue Reading →

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