Originally Posted by Wulfman
The idea behind it is to not allow a competitive advantage to a team that is healthier in comparison to another. You could have a situation where one team has seven guys inactive because they literally can't play, while the other team might only have two guys who can't do so. If everyone on the roster was allowed to play, the second team would technically have the advantage of five extra players on gameday.
Of course, that really only matters for about the first four weeks of the season. By then, just about every team has at least seven guys who can't really contribute for one reason or another.
I personally don't have a problem with having to name certain players inactive. But they need to increase the roster size. If they bumped the overall roster up to 60 and allowed 50 of them to be active on gameday, they'd keep the competitive balance while allowing for a few more players to be active for injury protection and specialization.
I think your idea might work well. There are so many injuries, it would help a team to be able to have more eligible players on game day. They could do more rotations and thus avoid injuries. I might even say go with a 60-man roster and allow 53 to be eligible. I suspect the players union may already be pushing for something similar.