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Andrew Berry Explains Browns Proposal To Move The NFL Trade Deadline

Each NFL offseason brings rule change proposals from every team and Browns GM Andrew Berry shared the team's plan to propose moving the league's trade deadline back to a later date in the season.

Browns general manger Andrew Berry plans to propose an interesting rule change at the NFL's annual league meeting next month.

Speaking at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis on Tuesday, Berry made it known he'll pitch his fellow league executives on the idea of moving trade deadline back to a later date in the season.

"We want to retroactively correct the fact that the trade deadline never moved when the season expanded to 17 games," Berry shared as one of the reasons for the proposal. "If, at some point in the future, the regular season expands to 18 games, we wanted to be proactive in terms of the positioning for the trade deadline."

As things current stand, the deadline is set for a one day after the conclusion of Week 8 of the regular season. That used to be a natural midway point of the season when the schedule was only 16 games. With a 17th added in 2021 and constant rumors of an 18th coming at some point, Cleveland's proposal makes a lot of sense.

If Berry and the Browns get their way, the deadline could end up being two weeks later following Week 10 of the season. That would have meant the deadline landed on Nov. 14 this past season.

For what it's worth, the current CBA agreement between the league and the NFLPA prohibits the league from adding an 18th game until the expiration of the current agreement.

Article 31 of the current CBA states that, "the League and/or Clubs shall have the discretion to increase the number of regular season games per Club from sixteen (16) to seventeen (17) (but not more), provided that the combined total of preseason and regular season games played per Club shall not exceed twenty (20) games. The League and/or Clubs shall not increase the number of regular season games per Club to eighteen (18) or more games"

That language could become an interesting road block between such a thing happening any time soon, but Berry's openness on the subject clearly speaks to the desire of the league to get there at some point.

Berry has other reasons for the proposal as well, noting the benefits of a hypothetical change, while balancing the integrity of the league.

"We think as a league it makes sense to give teams teams the most flexibility as long as possible to have the best product down the stretch run of the playoffs," Berry stated. "We wanted to make sure we maintained the competitive integrity of the season so you don't get into player dumping late in the year."

Further bolstering Berry's case is the timeline for the trade deadline in other major sports.

"If you look at us compared to the other major sports leagues," Berry started, "if you look at their seasons by calendar days or games played – baseball and basketball, they have their trade deadline at 65-percent of their games played. Hockey is at 78%. Currently, we're at 45%. Our proposal would move it to about 55% of the games played. Oh and by the way, over the last 10 years the earliest that a team has been eliminated from postseason contention has been Week 11."

The idea of a later deadline is intriguing as a way to trigger even more action across the league – making the day even more exciting for consumers.

When the owners meet next month to discuss all the rule change proposals, Berry will come equipped with a well-founded argument.