In 2015, the NFL was going through a trial period most fans probably knew very little about. In fact, some might not have had any idea the rules and regulations for the practice squad had changed last year. Well, those changes, which were on a one year trial basis, have been adopted for the 2016 and 2017 seasons by the NFL.
So, what exactly are the changes? From 2014 to 2015 the NFL approved a 10 person practice squad, which meant you could keep more players within your system. What also has changed is the regulations required to be placed on the practice squad. Before, veteran players had to simply be released, but now teams can have 4 of their 10 players to have accrued two NFL seasons, doubling the number from 2014.
Why does this matter? It allows teams like the Pittsburgh Steelers to keep players like Eli Rogers and Shakim Phillips around longer, when in the past one of them might have been sent packing.
Is it a significant change? Some might say no, while other scream yes, but until the NFL finally adopts a developmental league -- which is supposedly in the works -- the increased practice squad will have to suffice.