Redskins began three days of OTAs (Organized Team Activities) on Monday and this question arose: What’s the difference between a minicamp and OTAs? Most critically, it’s the hours. But first, some other stuff. Teams can have two mandatory minicamps — one for rookies and one for veterans. When a team has a new coach, as the Redskins do, the rule changes and the team may hold two voluntary minicamps and one mandatory. The Redskins already conducted the two voluntary camps (the last one May 7-9 included the rookies) and have the mandatory mini scheduled for June 16-18. Those minicamps were literally dawn to dusk affairs — rookies got on the bus from the hotel at 5:15 a.m. and were on the field a little after 6. The bus back to the hotel left at 6 p.m. Tighter rules for OTAs. OTA regulations limit players to six hours at the facility and two hours on the field. Players get a per diem for taking part in minicamps and OTAs but the per diem for minicamps is a bit higher. Contact isn’t permitted during drills at either. The rules governing these sessions allow for “intensity conducive to teaching” but no pads, no live hitting, etc. Summary: OTAs are shorter, less physically demanding and considered part of the voluntary off-season workouts. Minicamps are a bit more like training camp but without contact. Thanks for asking, Mrs. Weisman.