The NFL’s new rules for managing the COVID-19 pandemic allow teams to sign 16 players to the practice squad, but the New Orleans Saints left two spots open on their initial allotment. So what gives?
An easy explanation would be moving rookie punter Blake Gillikin to the practice squad; right now, the Saints have him rostered next to Thomas Morstead, one of the most experienced and effective punters in the NFL. But anything could happen amid this public health crisis, so it makes sense to hold onto Gillikin in case of an emergency.
Demoting Gillikin to fill that final practice squad spot would open room on the roster for running back Dwayne Washington, who has been sequestered in the NFL’s COVID-19 protocol.