NFLPA rejects rule changes to IR, trade deadline

August 23, 2012 | Luke Jones

Two of the most notable rule changes passed by the NFL earlier this offseason will not go into effect for the 2012 season after all.

The NFL Players Association did not approve changes to the injured reserve list and the trade deadline, meaning there will not be an injured-player exemption or a later deadline for making trades for at least another season.

The IR rule change passed in May would have provided teams with the opportunity to place one player on injured reserve — thus saving a spot on the 53-man roster — with the option of activating that player for the second half of the season. Under current league rules, any player placed on IR is lost for the season.

Owners had also voted to move the trade deadline back two weeks from the end of the sixth week of the regular season to the Tuesday of Week 8 at 4 p.m. ET.

According to the rules of the collective bargaining agreement, the NFLPA had to approve both rule changes for them to take effect.

According to a FOXSports.com report, the new rules were linked to alterations to in-season practice rules, which led to the union voting against them.

The news doesn’t really impact the Ravens for this season as injured linebacker Terrell Suggs is eligible to begin the season on the reserve non-football injury list, which would sideline him for the first six weeks of the season while allowing the team to replace him on the 53-man roster. After Week 6 of the regular season, Suggs will have a three-week window to begin practicing before the Ravens must then determine whether to place him on the 53-man roster or keep him on the list, which would then end his season.

The same conditions apply to wide receiver and return specialist David Reed, who remains on the active physically unable to perform list as he continues to rehab the surgically-repaired ACL in his left knee.

If approved by the NFLPA, the IR exemption could have applied to defensive lineman Ryan McBean if the prognosis for his fractured ankle would have suggested a potential return midway through the season. Of course, McBean underwent ankle surgery and will miss the rest of the season.

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