Following is the answer to a recent question in the NFLlabor.com mailbag. To submit a question, send an email to NFLlabor@nfl.com.
Q. It has been reported that the San Diego Chargers will not offer restricted free agent running back Darren Sproles a contract tender. What does that mean in terms of his status or that of any restricted free agent who is not offered a contract tender? Can a “Final Eight” club sign him?
A. When a player who would be a Restricted Free Agent is not tendered a contract by his club, he becomes a free agent who is free to sign with his team or any of the 31 other clubs. Restricted Free Agents who are tendered also can be signed by the other 31 teams but applicable compensation must be given to the old club if the old club does not exercise its right of first refusal to match the offer. Rules regarding “Final Eight” clubs apply only to UFAs in the uncapped 2010 season.