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NFL cuts 2018: How the waiver wire works, current order

Giants are currently No. 2, like they were in the 2018 NFL Draft

The New York Giants set their initial 53-man roster on Saturday. That, though, almost certainly won’t be the roster that faces the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Sept. 9 regular-season opener. GM Dave Gettleman has promised that the Giants would “work the waiver wire” once cuts were made.

So, what is the waiver wire and how does it work?

Who has to go through waivers?

When an NFL team releases a player who has accrued less than four years of NFL service, he is subject to the waiver wire process. NFL players who are released and have four or more years of accrued time in the league become immediate free agents. Accrued seasons are earned by being on the active 53-man roster for six games in a season, or being on an injury list for six games in a season.

This means that a player like former Dallas Cowboys placekicker Dan Bailey, who has seven years of accrued service, is a free agent who can sign with any team. A player Andrew Adams, who has two seasons of accrued service and was waived Saturday by the Giants, is subject to the waiver process.

Waiver wire process

Waivers normally operate on a 24-hour time period. That gives teams a full 24 hours to place a claim on a player who is subject to waivers. That process is abbreviated this weekend, running from 4 p.m. on Saturday until noon today.

If a player goes unclaimed by any of the 32 teams he becomes a free agent able to sign anywhere. If he is claimed by one or more teams he is awarded to the team with the highest waiver priority, which we will explain below.

A player like Darian Thompson, whom the Giants waived with an injury designation, would revert to the Giants’ injured reserve list if he goes unclaimed.

Waiver wire order

The Giants are currently No. 2 on the waiver wire priority list. From the first day of the league season until after Week 3 of the regular season when it resets, the process is based on last season’s record and the order is identical to the one used in the previous NFL Draft. The Giants, having gone 3-13, picked No. in the draft. The Cleveland Browns picked No. 1, meaning only the Browns are currently higher on the priority list.

If, for example, the Giants and Philadelphia Eagles place a waiver claim on the same player that player would be awarded to the Giants.

We will be tracking waiver claims today, so keep it here at Big Blue View as the Giants continue to construct their season-opening roster.

2018 Waiver Wire Order

Order Team
Order Team
1 Cleveland Browns
2 New York Giants
3 Indianapolis Colts
4 Houston Texans
5 Denver Broncos
6 New York Jets
7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
8 Chicago Bears
9 San Francisco 49ers
10 Oakland Raiders
11 Miami Dolphins
12 Cincinnati Bengals
13 Washington Redskins
14 Green Bay Packers
15 Arizona Cardinals
16 Baltimore Ravens
17 Los Angeles Chargers
18 Seattle Seahawks
19 Dallas Cowboys
20 Detroit Lions
21 Buffalo Bills
22 Kansas City Chiefs
23 Los Angeles Rams
24 Carolina Panthers
25 Tennessee Titans
26 Atlanta Falcons
27 New Orleans Saints
28 Pittsburgh Steelers
29 Jacksonville Jaguars
30 Minnesota Vikings
31 New England Patriots
32 Philadelphia Eagles