Field Yates of ESPN reports that the NFL informed teams Wednesday that they will be able to trade prospective 2017 compensatory picks from the start of the 2016 league year and up until the start of the 2016 draft.
This is primarily a condition that teams can add to a potential trade to improve an offer based on what they receive in terms of compensatory picks. Although, teams must specify which pick they’re trading if they’re receiving multiple compensatory picks in a single round.
“For example, if a club trades its 2017 fifth-round selection, the trade may include the following condition: If the club is awarded a fourth-round compensatory selection in 2017, the club will trade the 2017 fourth-round compensatory selection in lieu of the 2017 fifth-round selection. If the club is awarded multiple 2017 fourth-round compensatory selections, it will trade the compensatory selection that is closest to the end of the round.”
However, once the 2017 league year is underway and compensatory picks have been awarded, teams will be able to trade these 2017 compensatory picks without contingency.
According to Yates, teams will be able to begin trading these picks at the start of the 2016 NFL draft and up until the 2016 trading deadline.
In total, teams can trade 2016-2019 draft picks and prospective compensatory picks from 2017-2019.
Yates expects there to be plenty of trades involving picks during this year’s draft.
Previous reports had said that the NFL would allow teams to trade future compensatory picks, so this shouldn’t come as a major surprise.
Compensatory picks are awarded to teams that have lost more or better free agents than they signed in the previous year.
The exact formula the league uses for determining where each pick isn’t known, but it takes into account a player’s salary, playing time, and postseason honors with his new team. In total, there are 32 picks awarded in total each year between rounds 3 through 7.
However, teams haven’t been able to trade these picks in years past, but it certainly couldn’t hurt to give teams the ability to do what they like with all of their assets.
The NFL announces compensatory picks at the annual NFL meeting towards the end of March.
If you’re interested in seeing which teams could receive compensatory picks next year, check out OverTheCap.com projections.