Blog Entry

Source: Expect announcement on supplemental soon

Posted on: August 5, 2011 9:46 am
Edited on: August 5, 2011 9:48 am
 
According to a league source, the NFL is likely to make a decision about this summer's supplemental draft in the next 24-36 hours.

The supplemental draft became a "back burner issue" for much of the summer as the NFL and the NFLPA worked out their differences. Now that the CBA has been agreed to and officially ratified, however, the special eligibility draft is likely to become much more of an area of focus.

Despite what others have theorized, the supplemental draft does not appear to be (and perhaps never was) in danger of being cancelled. The only time the supplemental draft has been cancelled in the past has been when there have been no players to be eligible. This last occurred in 2008. Former Ohio State Buckeye quarterback Terrelle Pryor had his eligibility scrutinized when it appeared that he left school with the hopes of entering the draft on his own. As NFL spokesperson Greg Aiello told Alex Marvez of FoxSports.com, the supplemental draft "is for players whose circumstances have changed in an unforeseen way after the regular (college) draft. It is not a mechanism for simply bypassing the regular (draft).”

However, Ohio State notified Pryor on July 26 that he would have been suspended for the entire 2011 season. That announcement was met with little media attention, but it certainly caught the notice of the NFL. Pryor's eligibility now indeed had been changed in an unforeseen way, essentially securing him a spot whenever the league was able to organize a supplemental draft.

Regardless of Pryor's eligibility, however, the NFL had known for weeks that former Georgia running back Caleb King would qualify for eligibility. Expected to take over the starting spot in 2011, King was instead found to be academically ineligible.  Sources close to him had already made his plans to petition the league for eligibility in the supplemental draft public.

A third candidate for the supplemental draft is former North Carolina defensive end Michael McAdoo, who is continuing a legal battle with his former team and the NCAA to return to the Tar Heels. McAdoo has not yet made an official announcement about his intentions, but there are rumblings throughout the league that the 6-6, 248 pound pass rusher is weighing his options.

With free agency, the signing of draft choices and the opening of training camp being compressed into just a few days, the NFL, frankly, hasn't had the time to worry about the supplemental draft. They don't really have the time now, either. However, with at least two players almost surely to be found eligible for the draft, it will happen. Teams are going to need time to attend workouts for each player prior to any draft. A reasonable expectation, according to the source, would be that the league notified teams soon of a date for the draft to be held -- even if the draft won't occur for another few weeks.

Typically the supplemental takes place on or around July 15 - approximately 10 days before the start of most training camps in a normal year.

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