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What is new IR rule?

Posted Aug 31, 2012

Larry discusses new rules that were passed regarding injured reserve and the NFL trading deadline.

Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of email questions from fans on ChicagoBears.com.

I heard that NFL teams can now remove players from injured reserve so they wouldn't have to miss the entire season. What's the deal?

Phil K.
Barrington, Illinois

The NFL Management Council and NFL Players Association on Thursday agreed to adopt bylaw proposals impacting injured reserve rules and the trading deadline.

This season NFL teams will now be permitted to re-activate one player from injured reserve. Since the rule is being adopted after the cut down to 75 players, clubs will be allowed to return one player who has already been placed on IR to their active roster. But they must select that player no later than 8 p.m. (CT) Friday, which is the league deadline to reduce rosters to 53.

Following the cut down to 53, only players with a "major injury" who are placed on IR after 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 4 will be eligible to be reactivated at a later time. A major injury is defined as an injury that renders the player unable to practice or play for at least six weeks.

Each team may re-activate only one player placed on IR after 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 4. That player must be "designated for return" at the time he's placed on IR. He will be eligible to return to practice after six weeks on IR and may return to the active roster following eight weeks on IR.

The second bylaw that was adopted moves the trading deadline back two weeks from Tuesday, Oct. 16 to Tuesday, Oct. 30, the Tuesday after Week 8.

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