Rookies may not show up until June minicamp
While all 32 NFL teams enjoy knowing that their 2021 draft classes are complete, the reality of the business climate of the league struck on Monday, lessening the joy of the moment.
NFL Media reported that the NFL Players Association has urged every NFL rookie to stay away from upcoming rookie camps and other team-sponsored offseason camps.
This includes rookie minicamps, which DeMaurice Smith emphasized are voluntary. The union’s recommendation is players don’t show up to those either. So, some more drama over the next couple weeks. Nothing is mandatory until next month’s full-squad minicamps.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) May 3, 2021
Earlier this offseason, the NFLPA asked veteran players from all teams to boycott the offseason workout program (which is voluntary). The majority of the NFL, including the Raiders, are mostly staying away from the in-person workout portion of the offseason. There are some virtual meetings being conducted and some players in Las Vegas (and around the league) are at their team’s facility, including veterans with bonuses tied into offseason attendance.
The Raiders have been planning to have a rookie camp soon. However, if the rookies do stay away, the first time they gather will be at the team’s Henderson, Nevada, facility — and the first time the entire team will be together — will be at a mandatory minicamp in June.
This is a tough spot for the rookies to be in, especially lower-round draft picks and undrafted free agents. They want to come in and impress their new coaching staff … but they also have to show player solidarity
This will be interesting to watch play out.