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Important dates on NFL calendar for next few months

02.03.14 at 3:53 pm ET
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We’ve posted this before, but now, with the offseason officially underway, it’s worth another look — a look at some of the most important dates on the NFL calendar for the next few months.

Feb. 17: First day for clubs to designate franchise or transition players.
Feb. 19-25: Combine, Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis.
March 8-11: The open window for teams to contact and start contract talks with players who will become free agents when their 2013 deals expire at 4 p.m. on March 11. A contract cannot be executed with a new club until 4 p.m. ET on March 11.
March 11: New league year, free agency begins. Before 4 p.m. ET, clubs must exercise options for 2014 on all players who have option clauses in their 2013 contracts. In addition, teams must submit qualifying offers to their restricted free agents with expiring contracts, and clubs must be under the 2014 salary cap before 4 p.m. ET. According to reports, the cap will be between $126 million and $127 million.
March 23-26: Owners meetings, Orlando, Fla.
April 7: Clubs that hired a new head coach after the end of the 2013 regular season may begin off-season workout programs. (April 21 is the date teams with returning head coaches may begin off-season workout programs)
May 2: Deadline for restricted free agents to sign offer sheets.
May 7: Deadline for prior club to exercise right of first refusal to restricted free agents.
May 8-10: NFL draft, New York, Radio City Music Hall. First round begins at 8 p.m. ET.

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