September 13, 2017 3:51 pm

CFL eliminates full contact padded practices during season to reduce injury risk

The Calgary Stampeders take to the field at practice for the 104th Grey Cup in Toronto on Friday, November 25, 2016.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
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The CFL is eliminating full-contact padded practices during the season and extending its schedule to 21 weeks to help reduce the risk of injury.

The league and CFL Players Association made the joint announcement Wednesday.

The change is effective immediately. Teams were previously allowed to hold a total of 17 padded practices following training camp.

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In the NFL, clubs can have 11 padded practices over the first 11 weeks of the season, a maximum of one per week. After that, clubs can have three more padded practices for a total of 14 on the year.

Starting next year, the CFL regular season will be extended one week to 21, giving players more rest time between games.

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As a result, each CFL team will have three bye weeks instead of two.

© 2017 The Canadian Press

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