NFL 2021 Supplemental Draft – Cancelled
The NFL will not hold a Supplemental Draft in 2021 it was announced prior to the 4th of July break. It was the 2nd year in a row there was not a Supplemental Draft. Over the past 10 years, no players have been chosen in 6 of those 10 years.
Under the league’s collective bargaining agreement, the NFL has the right to decide whether to conduct a supplemental draft each year. Last year, the league cancelled mainly due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
After the league cancelled last year’s supplemental draft, those potential draft picks did not gain free-agent status, but could instead be entered into the 2021 NFL Draft. Expect the league to deliver the same directive to those hoping to enter the supplemental draft this year.
Supplemental drafts operate differently than the annual draft, with teams instead submitting bids on prospects based on the round in which they’d like to select a player. If they are awarded the player, they then forfeit their equivalent pick in the traditional draft in the following year.
The last player chosen in a recent supplemental draft (2019) saw one player selected in Washington St safety Jalen Thompson by the Arizona Cardinals in the 5th round.
With such little interest by NFL clubs, this special player selection process should be cancelled for a few reasons. First, no significant player has been chosen since wideout Josh Gordon by the Browns in the 2nd round of the 2012 Supplemental Draft. He actually set a new NFL record for 200 yard receiving games and high short term production in a few seasons. He has struggled qualifying for many seasons with testing positive repeatedly. LB Ahmad Brooks was chosen in the 3rd round of the 2006 Supplemental Draft and he had a productive career starting for the Bengals. Virtually every other selection over the past 20 year period was at best marginal starters or short term backups. Drafted players obviously miss Rookie and Veteran mini camps and have only two or three weeks to prepare for training camp where they enter the process at a distinct disadvantage to earn a roster spot.