Rule Changes: Third QB, Thursday Flex
22 May 2023, 05:14pm
The NFL passed a couple of important rule changes at the owners’ meetings today, including the return of the third QB rule and flex scheduling for Thursday nights.
The third quarterback rule is a response to the 49ers running out of quarterbacks in the NFC Championship Game. The emergency quarterback has to be a player on the 53-man roster, not a practice squad player elevated for that week’s game. However, the third quarterback becomes an extra active player. He can only come in if the team loses its first two quarterbacks due to injury or disqualification. If one of the other quarterbacks is cleared to return to the game, the emergency quarterback must be removed from the game.
What’s ironic is that the 49ers had three quarterbacks on the active roster for the NFC Championship Game! The third was Jimmy Garoppolo. So even with this rule, they would not have had an emergency quarterback available unless they had put a fourth quarterback on their active roster.
Regarding Thursday flexing: The league will be able to switch Thursday and Sunday games with at least 28 days’ notice from the league office, only in…