NFL offseason calendar: Combine, free agency, 2013 NFL Draft and more

Ezra Shaw

Big news! The NFL has released a calendar of events for the offseason ranging from February's NFL Combine in Indianapolis to free agency on March 12 to the 2013 NFL Draft from April 25-27. Here is a schedule of important NFL dates leading up to next season.

The official beginning of the NFL offseason brings with it a whole host of important dates. Jim Harbaugh met with the media earlier today and indicated the team would be taking some much needed R&R, but he also talked about each person needing to consider what is needed to get that edge for next season. Part of that involves getting ready for the upcoming season.

This is not a complete list of dates, but it involves a lot of the important ones. Two notable dates that are missing are the start and end date for using the franchise tag. Given Dashon Goldson's status, I thought that was pretty important. Per the CBA, teams can start applying the franchise tag on the 22nd day preceding the start of the new league year. The last day to apply the tag is the eighth day preceding the new league year. The new league year starts at 4:00 p.m. ET on March 12. I believe that means the team can apply the tag starting February 18, and has until March 4. I could be off by a day, depending on the counting, but that looks about right.

We'll focus on these events in greater detail in the coming days, weeks and months, but feel free to bookmark this page for future reference.

February 9-10

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Regional Combine, Orange Coast College-Lebard Stadium, Los Angeles, California

February 16

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Regional Combine, Methodist Training Center (Texans), Houston, Texas

February 17

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Regional Combine, Cleveland Browns Training Facility, Cleveland, Ohio

February 20-26

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Combine Timing and Testing, Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana.

March 2-3

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Regional Combine, Atlantic Health Jets Training Facility, New York/New Jersey

March 9

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Regional Combine, One Buccaneer Place, Tampa, Florida

March 10

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Regional Combine, Halas Hall (Bears), Chicago, Illinois

March 9-11

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Clubs are permitted to enter into contract negotiations with certified agents of players who will be Unrestricted Free Agents at the end of the current League Year.

March 12

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Prior to 4:00 p.m., New York time, clubs must exercise options for 2013 on all players who have option clauses in their 2012 contracts.

March 12

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Prior to 4:00 p.m., New York time, clubs must submit Qualifying Offers to their Restricted Free Agents with expiring contracts and to whom they desire to retain a Right of First Refusal/Compensation.

March 12

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Prior to 4:00 p.m., New York time, clubs must submit a minimum salary offer to retain exclusive negotiating rights to their players with expiring 2012 contracts and who have fewer than three seasons of free agency credit.

March 12

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All 2012 player contracts will expire at 4:00 p.m., New York time.

March 12

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Top-51 Begins. All clubs must be under the Salary Cap prior to 4:00 p.m., New York time.

March 12

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The 2013 League Year and Free Agency period begin at 4:00 p.m., New York time.

March 12

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Trading period begins at 4:00 p.m., New York time, for 2013 after expiration of all 2012 contracts.

March 16-17

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Regional Combine, Atlanta Falcons Training Facility, Atlanta, Georgia

March 17-20

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Annual League Meeting, The Biltmore, Phoenix, Arizona.

March 23-24

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Regional Combine, Virginia Mason Athletic Center (Seahawks), Seattle, Washington

March 23-24

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Regional Combine, Baltimore Ravens Training Facility, Baltimore, Maryland

April 7-8

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Super Regional Combine, Cowboys Stadium, Dallas, Texas

April 25-27

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NFL Draft, New York City, New York.

May 20-22

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NFL Spring League Meeting, Hyatt-Harborside, Boston, Massachusetts.

September 5, 8-9

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NFL Kickoff 2013

September 29

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NFL International Series, London, Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Minnesota Vikings

October 27

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NFL International Series, London, San Francisco 49ers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars


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