De'Anthony Thomas will likely miss some Chiefs OTAs due to Oregon's quarter system

Justin Edmonds

An NFL rule prohibiting players from participating in offseason workouts until their academic calendar is complete will cost Chiefs fourth round pick De'Anthony Thomas some OTAs.

The Kansas City Chiefs made six draft picks in the 2014 NFL Draft and those players will be arriving in Kansas City to meet the coaching staff and their new teammates this offseason. One player who will likely not be showing up for OTAs is Oregon's De'Anthony Thomas, the Chiefs fourth round pick.

Thomas is affected by an odd NFL rule. NFL teams prohibit players from working out with their new teams until the player's academic calendar is complete. Most schools are done in late April or early May. But some schools, like Oregon, are on the quarter system, which doesn't end their school year until June.

Thomas went to Oregon and their finals are not done until June 13 so Thomas will likely not be able to participate in the Chiefs offseason program during that time. He will likely get an exemption to attend the rookie minicamp the weekend of May 24 but don't expect him to be available for the OTAs on May 27-29, June 3-5 and possibly June 10-13. He will be able to attend the Chiefs mandatory minicamp on June 17-19.

Oregon is one of a few schools on the quarter system. Other notable schools include Ohio State (not anymore!) and Stanford, where Andrew Luck went through the same issue with the Indianapolis Colts after the 2012 draft.

Thomas is almost certainly going to make the Chiefs roster regardless of whether he was there or not. This rule really affects the late round picks and rookie free agents more than anyone else. But it still means DAT will be getting with the program later than others.

Andy Reid mentioned previously being able to get the rookies in quickly after the draft as opposed to last year. Last year, the draft was in April and the Chiefs rookie minicamp was on May 10-12. This year, with the draft May 8-10 and many school years already over, the rookies are able to come right in after the draft and participate (excluding the quarter system guys). The difference between the offseason program this year and last is about two weeks -- last year, it ended on June 6 and this year it ends on June 19.

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