About those rookie contracts

Posted by Darren Urban on July 7, 2010 – 10:34 am

Ran into general manager Rod Graves yesterday before he was going to start a lunchtime workout and we had a brief chat. The Cards still don’t have any of their seven draft picks under contract, but I expect that to change sooner rather than later. A couple of tidbits when talking to Graves came up. One, even with all the talk and concern about the state of the labor talks, he doesn’t think that will have a significant impact on the signing of first-round draft picks. There figure to be a handful of guys who go down to the wire (or even a few days into camp), but no more than normal.

The Cardinals also are changing the way they are approaching contract length. In the past, the first-rounder has always had a longer deal (usually six years), the second-rounder got a four-year deal, and everyone else signed for three seasons (with the team knowing the player would be a restricted free agent at that point and he could be tendered for one year, extended or just let go). Graves said the lower picks will now get four-year deals. It’s the wave of the NFL and few teams are still doing it the way the Cards have been, so the Cardinals are just going to go with the league’s flow.

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16 Responses to “About those rookie contracts”

  1. By Brandon on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Good to hear

  2. By Brandon on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Did he say anything about the chances of a lockout?

  3. By darrenurban on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Brandon —

    I didn’t talk to him about that, but at this point, all that is above his head. That’s owners-versus-the players’ association. GMs, like coaches, are just bystanders waiting to see what happens.

  4. By John on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply


    Any chance Dockett gets locked up before the season starts?

  5. By darrenurban on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    John —

    I do not expect that to happen.

  6. By brad oneill on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    I hate nfl contracts. i hope they get some sense and put in some rules that prevent fiascos like haynsworth and also give a guy like boldin a chance to get paid what he is worth instead of what the team managed to lock him up for when he was young and hungry.

  7. By darrenurban on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Brad —

    The problem is there is no way to put in “rules” for that.

  8. By R Robles on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    We Gotta Resign Are Current Core Players NOW!!!!

  9. By AndyStandsUp on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    The problem with NFL rookie contracts are the asinine signing bonuses. For Matthew Stafford to make 40 mil and Sam Bradford to probably ask for 45 million is just plain insane. The NFL needs a rookie salary cap, like the NBA and NHL. Even in MLB most rookies have to spend some time in the minors paying their dues. It has to be a priority for the owners in the next CBA.
    Each team is assigned a salary figure(basic money, not extras) for first year players. Darren, what’s the Card’s rookie salary pool?

  10. By darrenurban on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    There is no rookie pool, because there is no salary cap. That said, I am sure the teams will continue to try and use a “slotting” system to get guys signed. Obviously, it hasn’t slowed signings around the league; rookies are coming under contract about the same rate as usual (actually, maybe even a bit quicker).

  11. By AndyStandsUp on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, I know the league had the option to drop the rookie pool because of the unsigned CBA, but I thought it was announced that it would continue.(along with the slotting formula.)

  12. By darrenurban on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    Did not know that. Let me look into that.

  13. By darrenurban on Jul 8, 2010 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    You are right. The rookie pool does remain in place. They could have dropped it, but didn’t, which makes sense — this makes sure those first-year salaries don’t end up out of whack.

  14. By cardattac on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Andy…. I agree with you on the fact that some of these rookie contracts are out of control!!! 40 mill for a kid fresh out of collage??? I think they need to prove there wealth/worth in the NFL first. I understand a team spending good money for a VET, a great player both on and off the field. But have we really come to a point where a 10 million dollar rookie contract 4 years wouldn’t sound good for a first round draftee??? They really need 40 mill??? They get out of collage makin over some odd million a year. Heck!!! Give me 10 mill and you wouldn’t hear me complaining. Maybe I’m just weird???

    Dont get me wrong…. I know these guys work really hard and deserve a good reward for it and success. But what can they do with 40 million that they cant do with 10 at 21-22 years old. C’mon man!!!

    Anywho…. Right on to our boys for finding cool ways to get out there, have fun and support our favorite team!!! GO CARDS!!!

  15. By Mikeso602 on Jul 9, 2010 | Reply

    hey darren do you think rookie qb john skelton will be signed,(wich im sure will) and if so do u think we will get to see him in action come pre season? and what is your imput on him?

  16. By darrenurban on Jul 9, 2010 | Reply

    Mikeso602 —

    Absolutely Skelton will play in the preseason. How much, we will see. I think he’s got raw tools and will take some time to develop but I can see why they like him.

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