It's time for another roster cut deadline in what will be a frenzy over the next week. Each team must move to 53 players -- right or not -- by tomorrow, September 3. Currently the allowable number is 80, so that means 27 players from each and every NFL franchise will be given the pink slip sometime in the next 24 hours. In case you haven't already done the math in your mega-mind, allow me to help. That makes 864 free agents for teams to consider. 864. Let that number sink in.
So what should you expect in the next 24 hours? We're here to help. Just buckle the seat belt around your internal football fan and know that the following will happen:
1. Some solid, respected veterans will be released early today:
It's the respectful thing to do for a team to release a well-liked, celebrated veteran the moment they realize they won't want him on the roster anymore (and cannot conceivably trade him since teams know they will release him). Thus, you should expect several (more like dozens) of familiar names to start coming across the wire starting this morning and moving through the early afternoon.
2. Expect some (major) surprises:
Teams are protecting their young more and more in today's NFL, so it's a given that some surprises will be among the vast amount of roster cuts. Yet you should expect at least a few total surprises to come across the wire as you wonder, "No way! I can't believe he's available." There will be several of those.
3. Some last-minute trades will go down today:
As some NFL teams smell blood in the water on a particular player they might be interested in, some teams will pull the trigger on trade talks to avoid the free agency possibility altogether. If the Chiefs want a particular player, for instance, and are afraid that 30 others will feel the same way, then Scott Pioli might make a deal to secure the player's services. Expect several lower round draft choices to swap hands today.
4. It's a matter of strengths and weaknesses:
At this point, teams are suffering from injuries at particular positions and they also know where they have strengths and where they are thin. They're scouring the rosters of the other teams searching for who has help in an area where they are thin and they're waiting like sharks around the team's announcements.
If the Chiefs feel they're thin at quarterback, for instance, with Matt Cassel getting injured last night and Tyler Palko's performance this off-season, they might want another veteran. The Detroit Lions go three deep on their roster and the Chiefs might want to pony up for a Drew Stanton or Shaun Hill. This is complete conjecture, so it's just an example of what one team might do as they wait for another team to make their own decisions.
It's going to be a fun day, that much is for sure. Stay tuned throughout the day and we'll keep you posted on roster moves and rumors, and don't forget the always incredible coverage for the Chiefs at Arrowhead Pride.