NFL adjusting to lighter camps
When 10 years’ worth of labor peace came to the NFL in 2011, so did a massive change in the rules governing practice — during the season, the offseason and, most especially, in training camps. Lengthy double sessions, the dreaded two-a-days, became a shorter session and a walkthrough.
Hitting anywhere outside the games themselves was minimized. Days off during camp were required. Perhaps as worrisome to coaching staffs, not to mention players on the roster bubble, was a significant decrease in teaching time.
Unless the collective bargaining agreement is opened before it expires after the 2020 season, none of that will change. And the complaints will remain.
“Some of the things, that you can’t put a player in front of a player in the offseason even with a pad on,” Cowboys linebackers coach Matt Eberflus said of one major problem. “That to me is restrictive because you have to use managers and those types of things. The rules are the rules and we abide by the rules. But I think that at times can be a little bit restrictive.”
So does Falcons guard Ben Garland, to a degree.
“I think it depends on who you are,” the veteran of three NFL seasons said. “If you are a guy who is really young and a free agent and doesn’t have a lot of reps, it is really tough for you because it really limits your reps and your experience.