The practice squad concept was first invented by legendary Cleveland Browns coach Paul Brown. Also called the “taxi squad”, it consisted of a group of young players with potential, who failed to make the roster but were kept on reserve. Mickey McBride, owner of the team at the time, put them on the payroll at his taxi company, although they didn’t actually drive cabs.
The Life of a Practice Squad Player – Quick Facts:
- Practice squad signees practice alongside active roster players during the week, but they are not allowed to participate in actual games.
- They can be paid significantly less than active squad players; in 2012, the minimum salary for a practice squad player was $5,700 per week, and the minimum rookie salary was $390,000. Some practice squad players are paid noticeably more, however.
- Practice squad players are free agents; they can be signed to any team’s 53-man roster at any time during the season. In other words, NFL teams are free to “poach” other teams’ practice squads without compensating the teams, with one exception: a team cannot sign another team’s practice squad players if they are playing against each other in the immediate future, a restriction that prevents using the tactic solely to steal game plans.
|13||Brown, Fred||WR||6-1||196||23||0||Mississippi State|
|67||Bryant, Omarius||DT||6-3||315||23||R||Western Kentucky|
|27||Johnson, Isaiah||DB||6-1||207||25||3||Georgia Tech|
|19||McRoberts, Paul||WR||6-2||197||24||1||Southeast Missouri State|
|72||Neary, Aaron||C/G||6-4||301||24||1||Eastern Washington|
|47||Peterson, Kevin||CB||5-11||180||23||1||Oklahoma State|
|39||Rogers, Sam||FB||5-10||235||22||R||Virginia Tech|
|56||Sickels, Garrett||OLB||6-4||252||23||0||Penn State|
WR Fred Brown College Highlights: