Welcome to the final week of offseason workouts before NFL players, coaches and staff take their summer break and reconvene in late July for training camp.
While a host of teams are ending the final phase of the offseason program with mandatory minicamps starting Tuesday, the Denver Broncos and Jacksonville Jaguars kick off their three days of mandatory work today.
The Collective Bargaining Agreement allows each club to hold one mandatory minicamp for veteran players during Phase Three of the offseason program. The camps mark the first time each offseason that most players can fully dive into their on-field preparation for the upcoming campaign. With fewer veterans skipping the sessions and, unlike earlier workouts, coaches able to work with players on the field, mandatory minicamps feel more like real practices.
That means we’ll see Russell Wilson guiding new coach Nathaniel Hackett’s scheme in Denver.
The Jags are taking a different approach to mandatory minicamp, with new coach Doug Pederson giving most of the veterans the week off.
“I’m still having the mandatory minicamp, mandatory three days, but I’m only doing the rookies, selected veterans and our injured players,” Pederson said last week. “The injured players are guys that maybe finished the season with an injury that worked all offseason. I just require them to stay here and still get treatment and rehab. So, it’s a chance to really work with our young players and some of the selected vets on a little more of a one-on-one basis. We’re going to do that next week, so the veterans are done.”
Pederson, who coached the Eagles from 2016-2020, noted that the veterans earned the extra time off.
“It’s all based on what they’ve done,” he said. “I’ve done this kind of thing in the past, but at the same time, I wanted to see this group work and work together. It wasn’t final until just within the last week or so for me to make the decision. Again, these guys have worked extremely hard. They’ve earned it. They deserve it. We got done, as a staff, what we needed to get done and we’re getting ready for camp.”
Meanwhile, 15 NFL teams will kick off minicamp Tuesday.