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NFL makes changes to IR rules and practice squad limit

Teams will now have eight players permitted to return from IR.

NFL: Super Bowl LVII -Super Bowl LVII Handoff Ceremony Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL has been some significant changes to how the practice squad and the injury reserve list will operate moving forward.

On Wednesday, NFL Network insiders Mike Garafolo and Ian Rapoport reported the following changes:

  • Players designated for return from IR or the reserve/non-football injury/illness list are eligible to come back after four games have elapsed since the date said player was placed on the applicable reserve list. Previously, players were eligible to return after three games missed.
  • Teams will now have eight players permitted to return from IR and/or the reserve/non-football injury/illness list to the 53-man active roster or the practice squad, per season.
  • An individual player can return from IR a maximum of twice per season, but each time counts against the team’s allotted eight designations.
  • Practice squads can now permanently have 16 players. That’s actually the same limit the NFL had in each of the last two seasons due to COVID-19. If not for that, then the practice squad limit would have been 14 for the 2022 season.
  • Starting this year, teams can have up to six veterans on the practice squad regardless of how long those six players have been in the NFL.
  • Teams can now elevate individual players from the practice squad to the game-day roster a maximum of three times per season, rather than two, the previous limit.

You can read more about all of the changes here.