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The most important absences in the 2024 NFL minicamp

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The mandatory minicamps for ten of the 32 NFL teams have begun and despite being “mandatory” there are several interesting no-shows.

The ten teams whose minicamps have begun are the Miami Dolphins, Chicago Bears, Minnesota Vikings, Indianapolis Colts, Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions, Tennessee Titans, San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles, and Houston Texans.

What is a mandatory NFL minicamp?

The NFL minicamp is a mandatory training session for all players on a team’s roster, typically held during the offseason. It serves multiple purposes: it allows coaches to evaluate player fitness and performance, integrates new players, especially rookies and recently acquired veterans, into the team’s system, and provides an opportunity for players to familiarize themselves with playbooks and on-field strategies. Minicamps are crucial for establishing team cohesion, refining skills, and setting the groundwork for the upcoming season. They help ensure that players are in peak condition and that the team operates seamlessly when the regular season begins.

If it so crucial, you may ask, why then would players miss them? Well, the reasons are exactly what you would imagine, with injury recovery or personal and family matters taking the lead. But when it comes to high-profile players, the top reason is strategic. This is also the heart of contract renegotiation season and a holdout can be a strong tool in the arsenal of an agent or player.

The most notable names absent are CeeDee Lamb, who missed the first day of the Cowboys minicamp in the midst of a contract dispute. Cowboys defensive end Micah Parsons defied speculation that he would skip camp when the three-time Pro Bowl pass rusher showed up. New signing for the Dolphins, Odell Beckham Jr has yet to work out with the team, but this seems to be an approved

On the flip side of that picture is Tua Tagovailoa, who despite his contract negotiations has appeared at the Dolphins’ camp. Team mate Tyreek Hill was also at the camp despite his agent pushing hard for a pay raise. The same is true of Christian McCaffrey, who has missed occasional workouts as he wants a pay raise, but has shown up at the Niners’ camp.

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