There was a time in the NFL when some coaches didn’t get fired. Instead, the moves were called a mutual parting.
An NFL team and a veteran safety are trotting out that label when it comes to the decision to eliminate the player’s practice-squad contract.
Via Adam Schefter of ESPN.com, the Eagles and safety Anthony Harris “have mutually agreed to terminate his practice squad contract to maximize his flexibility to join another team’s active roster.”
At first blush, it made no sense. A league source initially suggested that the development may have something to do with the team’s ability to protect up to four practice-squad players per week from being signed elsewhere. However, for 2022, that device is gone.
The only added flexibility for the player comes from the ability to work out for other teams. Also, the rules still prevent a practice-squad player from signing with the active roster of his current team’s next opponent within six days before the game. The price for Harris, obviously, is his weekly practice-squad salary.
Even if there is limited benefit to Harris in getting the contract terminated, it’s no small thing for a team to just give up its rights. Maybe more franchises are adopting Mike Tomlin’s we want volunteers not hostages mantra. If the Eagles are in that club, it shows that they’ve come a verylong way from the days of their stubborn refusal to trade or cut a disgruntled Terrell Owens.