The NFL players will have the opportunity to jump back into the league of their youth for the 2017 season, a league source told ESPN.com on Wednesday.
Players who have already signed with teams and who are in the process of deciding whether or not to sign with a new team for the coming season are being allowed to begin playing at a higher level of the sport they love.
Those who are still unsigned, however, will have to be ready to make a leap of faith when it comes to landing a new professional team.
Here’s a look at what’s expected of the upcoming NFL season:The next step for many players is getting their first shot at making the jump to professional football.
This year, only two players from the 2014 draft class have signed professional contracts: cornerback Trae Waynes and wide receiver Brandin Cooks.
Waynes has been signed to the Lions and will be an unrestricted free agent next offseason.
Cooks is signed to a one-year, $1.9 million contract with the Saints and will become an unrestricted restricted free agent this offseason.
The Lions have a lot of veteran help on defense, so it’s hard to imagine any player playing the position at the next level.
The Lions have also re-signed defensive end DeAndre Levy and cornerback DeAndre Carter, which makes the depth at the position much more formidable.
The first of those players, Carter, is expected to be the first-round pick in the NFL draft.
The 6-foot-1, 206-pound Carter was a member of the 2014 NFL draft class.
Cook was drafted in the first round by the Steelers in 2013 and spent two seasons with the team before retiring.
He signed with the Chargers in 2014 and spent last season with the Rams.
He was drafted by the Eagles in the second round in 2015 and spent four seasons in Philadelphia before retiring in 2018.
He had a stint with the Jaguars in 2018 before retiring from the league.
Wayne signed with Minnesota last season.
He played in three games in 2016, but was not drafted by Minnesota.
He has also spent time with the Lions in his NFL career, playing in two games.
Cook, meanwhile, spent two years with the Browns and was drafted with the No. 12 overall pick in 2016.
He spent the 2017 NFL draft with the Vikings and was one of two wide receivers selected in the 2017 draft.
The rest of the NFL is expected the NFL will allow more players to jump from the youth to the pros, with the league releasing a rule change Tuesday that would allow any player who is a college player to play professional football in the future.
The rule change was put in place to help the youth of the game, who are playing in a growing number of youth leagues in the United States.
A similar rule change went into effect last season, but that rule change would allow college players to play pro football in their final year of eligibility.
The change is expected have the same impact on players who have signed with NFL teams and have decided to make that leap.