Why playbook must remain on 49ers property

Today’s question is in reference to the blog item I posted earlier this week. Rookie offensive lineman Alex Boone was behind his new teammates because NFL rules prohibited his participation in 49ers workouts before Ohio State staged its graduation ceremonies.

Boone was not able to study the playbook he was issued during the post-draft minicamp (the only minicamp he was allowed to attend until graduation). Niners offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye has a rule that playbooks are not allowed to leave the building.


Question:  . . .  but detailed notes are allowed? Why do we even still have a “book” as opposed to this being on computer? (Bryan H.)


Answer: I have not checked eBay recently, but I’d imagine you won’t find too many current NFL playbooks for sale. The reason is because every team has security measures in place to guard against their secrets from going public.


The 49ers will have 80 players in training camp. Right now, they have 40 players who have been issued offensive playbooks. Approximately 15 of those players will be released before the start of the regular season. Guaranteed that among those released players will be some angry, bitter and disgruntled athletes.


If these players were allowed to take home their playbooks, you better believe some might feel inclined to visit their local Kinko’s to make a backup copy – or two. And, no doubt, a few bucks could be made with the sale of such items at some point after the final cuts.


This is also the reason playbooks are not distributed to players via CD for viewing on computers. The NFL playbook has not changed much through the years even with the advances in technology, and now you know why.


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