Rolando McClain gets the first big-money rookie deal of the year

As a sleepless MDS pointed out in the wee hours of the morning (I should send him a copy of Quarterback of the Future, which will cure his insomnia far more quickly than monitoring the Raiders’ official website for announcements), the first top-ten pick of the 2010 draft class has agreed to terms

Adam Schefter of ESPN reports from his Partridge Family training camp tour bus, which Jay Glazer has yet to deface, that Raiders linebacker Rolando McClain, the eighth overall selection in the draft, will receive $23 million guaranteed on a five-year, $40 million deal.

That’s $8 million per year for a middle linebacker who has never participated in an official NFL practice.  Paid at a time when many teams are refusing to pay that kind of money to proven players.

As to the $23 million guaranteed, we’ll believe it’s guaranteed when we see that it’s guaranteed.  All too often of late, reports have emerged of huge guaranteed amounts (e.g., Brandon Marshall, D’Brickashaw Ferguson) that ended up being one-year deals with team options for the rest. 

That said, when it comes to top-ten rookie deals, the guaranteed amounts that are reported in the media usually are accurate.  And, if the report regarding McClain isn’t accurate, don’t be surprised if the Raiders eventually put the word out that the numbers are wrong, as they once tried to do after signing receiver Javon Walker.  (As it turns out, the Raiders’ effort to point out the erroneous nature of the reports on Walker’s deal ended up being, well, erroneous.)

The McClain deal as reported contains $4 million more in guaranteed money than the No. 8 pick in 2009, Jaguars tackle Eugene Monroe, received.  Per NFLPA records (as communicated to us by two separate sources), McClain received $19 million in guaranteed money.
Still, the devil on these deals dwells deeply in the details.  For example, the one-time incentive bonus based on minimum playing time often isn’t truly guaranteed, and if the guy for whatever reason doesn’t meet the threshold (35 percent in the first year, 45 percent thereafter), he doesn’t get the money.  Tight end Kellen Winslow, for example, never received one-timer money that typically is included in the calculation of guaranteed cash.

In this case, it’s possible that Monroe’s guarantee as reported didn’t include the one-timer, and that McClain’s does.  We’re in the process of tracking down those details, and we’ll sift through them for you, if our adult ADD doesn’t kick in first.

[Editor’s note:  A prior version of this article reflected guaranteed money for Monroe of $25 million, based on multiple reports published at the time the deal was done.  This dynamic further illustrates the often inaccurate or incomplete information that is disseminated when first-round contracts are signed.  The agents have a strong incentive to overstate the value of the deals, since they believe this will help them in recruiting future clients.]

40 responses to “Rolando McClain gets the first big-money rookie deal of the year

  1. Just 5 years ago Alex Smith got about 24 million guaranteed. #1 pick, plus QB premium.
    Now the #8 pick, an ILB, is getting that kind of money.
    Something really needs to be done about rookie salaries.

  2. They took away Glazer’s booster seat on the bus so he can’t look out the window anymore. It was frightening children in passing cars. They would wake up screaming in the middle of the night. “De face, momma, de face!”.

  3. Florio, this article could have been much shorter. Report the details as they have been given and compare to last years #8 pick. Conclude that the Raiders and McClain worked out a fair contract.
    Instead you must implore us to stay tuned until you can keep digging into details until you can come out and say the Raiders screwed up and overpayed him. Classy.

  4. That’s not exactly a whopper considering Heyward-Bey got 38.25 deal with 23.5 guaranteed last season at the #7 spot. Kudos to both sides for getting McClain in to camp on time.

  5. If a serious rookie wage scale isn’t put into place and the cap restored the players are going to force already astronomical ticket prices to the point that not many games will sell out because the average fan will no longer be able to afford to go to games.

  6. This is ridiculous, this guy who has never taken a snap in the nfl got almost the same $ as P Willis, who is a 3 time all pro and possibly the best LB in the NFL. I’m speechless. This guy better put 200 tackles this season.. P Willis got 212 unofficial and about 180’s official tackles in his rookie season..

  7. Florio will try everything to try to disgrace the raiders. He hates them so much. It’s ok florio raiders will smack up your steelers again just like last year. What is florio gona say when the raiders hold up that lombardi trophey this year?
    MCLain IS Gona bring the PAIN!
    your doomed florio

  8. This does not seem out of line as compared to last years numbers so I do not believe the Raiders are off base with the contract. That being said, there still needs to be a rookie cap or this will destroy the league.

  9. The Raiders are everyone’s chump when it comes to contracts. But hey, a fool and his money ……….

  10. OK, I was getting all the references to other players up until Eugene Monroe… what were we comparing there? A tackle to ILB? A number 8 pick to a number 10? The Jags to the Raiders? Ummm… yes… McClain is getting less guarenteed. Tell me why we’re surprised?
    By the way… great pick and signing by the Raiders. That’s coming from a Broncos fan, too.

  11. Oh crap. Nevermind. I get it. 8 to an 8. Fell asleep for a second, lost in the references.

  12. I agree with you HarrisonHits, this is too much, and the thing is that us fans are the ones paying the price for the most part, every year tickets go up, if not the tickets, the parking or something else. I think the league should start by putting a cap on the raiders, they mess everything up for all the other teams lol.

  13. Florio, have you been paying attention to the Raiders lately? No contract with Oakland is guaranteed.

  14. bottom line…he is in camp, and so are all the other raiders picks… matter what this is the last year of this stupid money being paid to “kids” who for sure seserve less than pro bowl players.

  15. Typical Raiders. They seem to think if you over-pay you are entitled to have a superstar ! Look at JaJunk. Dead Al, let him earn it first then if he performs give him the moon. The NFL is not run by the owners or that idiot commissioner. It is run by the inmates and their jailers, called agents !

  16. football and tv were made for each other.
    when they make us pay even more for tv access… football and radio will be made for each other.
    when they shut off radio… football and internet webcast will still be made for each other.
    when that starts costing $, i will get the scores the next day.
    suggest other people do the same. and then if them in football power are chastened enough, they will cut the crap.

  17. Way to fumble the facts in your post, Florio!
    Nice fumble recover with Editor’s note!
    I guess writing any article involving the Jaguars that didn’t lead to the statement , ” this doesn’t mean the Jaguars won’t be moving to L.A.” made you lose your focus and prime agenda.

  18. you also have to give the raiders props for hiring Greg Biekert as well yesterday as Lb coach, and to groom McClain.
    Looks like Marshall gets to have some fun with his newly improved “D” Icing on the cake will be when Haynesworth gets his ticket out of washington.

  19. @Forevercorr : Monroe was pick #8 in last year’s draft, the same slot McClain went this year. You may be confused because the Jaguars selected Alualu, this year, two spots after McClain. (steadfast evidence the Jaguars will be moving to L.A.)

  20. RADERNATIONdotNET…exactly. The Raiders..I dont get it. Its almost like they are trying to bankrupt themselves. What is wrong with that orginization? They, Davis, I think has lost his mind. It makes no sense what they do. If they were successful?.I would admit..I dont understand the intracies of the NFL. But they dont. They constantly do stupid things and are always failures. Its crazy. Oh Oakland Radier NAtion..thank you for your first round pick next year for a washed up Seymour. Much obliged.
    A Pats fan. Wheres the Patriots cheat banter?

  21. NinerDynasty says:
    July 29, 2010 11:38 AM
    I think the league should start by putting a cap on the raiders, they mess everything up for all the other teams lol.
    Says the idiot who’s team overpaid for Nate Clemens.

  22. All these rookies are overpaid, but I’m glad to see that Al got the deal done. Get McClain in camp and at lease give him a chance to succeed. It’s better than waiting until the end of training camp or into the season and then overpaying. Way to get it done. Go RAIDERS!!!

  23. ” McClain received $19 million in guaranteed money.”
    Monroe received 19 million. Not McClain.

  24. raidersteve413 says:
    July 29, 2010 11:19 AM
    What is florio gona say when the raiders hold up that lombardi trophey this year?
    Oakland Raiders:
    2009: 5-11
    2008: 5-11
    2007: 4-12
    2006: 2-14
    2005: 4-12
    2004: 5-11
    2003: 4-12
    Yep. No doubt about it. That team will be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy very soon.

  25. If he is the draft pick of 31 other teams, this pos article is 2 paragraphs long with a smiley face at the end.

  26. Tango you walking abortion: still flapping your gums about things you know nothing about I see. (Since you don’t know anything that includes all topics of discussion). God, AKA Al Davis is paying McClain a very reasonable salary based on what other players drafted in that slot were paid. Just because you’ll never earn that much money on your paper route doesn’t mean McClain doesn’t deserve it.

  27. The Raiders are going to look like fools when lowball contracts start rolling in on all the players above McClain, and he ends up the 2nd or 3rd highest-paid player in the draft even though he was picked 8th.
    Best year ever to be a GM. Just tell your pick’s agent “You want to hold out for more money? Fine, re-enter the draft next year when there’s a rookie salary scale. I dare you.”

  28. Why does florio hate on OAKLAND so much??????
    His stupid comment about paying a player who hasnt taken a snap yet, makes it seem as if Oakland is the only team doing that. last i checked every team in the NFL has to do that! I wish we had a scale but we dont. Every time he writes something about oakland he needs to take a stab at us! Honestly, this is getting ridiculous! I like Florio & I like his site but I am getting sick of his little stabs. This is the same reason why I spend less time watching ESPN! Florio you need to stop taking shots! Yes, my team has been very bad over the last 8 yrs but there is no reason to always put a spin on a story. What you should be reporting is how oakland has done a great job drafting & getting everyone signed. How they seem to be changing the culture & might have a chance of actually turning this around! Im not one of these stupid fans thinking superbowl but 8 wins would be a huge accomplishment! All I ask is that you stop taking pointless shots!

  29. Proofreader…. the NFL is the sport in which previous success/failure is little indication of future success.
    You can read out the Raiders records over the last 7 years when we were stuck in dis-functionality and Jamarcus Russell, but I truly believe this year is different.
    Whatever, I’m waiting for the year to begin, and you should too, tool bag.

  30. Jeez Florio, did Uncle Al kick in Florio Jr’s bedroom door with his walker and break his piggy bank to help pay for McClain’s contract?..
    Get back to sniffing Timothy Richard’s Jockey shorts…

  31. For all his ‘crazy’ moves, you have to hand it to Al Davis for taking care of his players. Non-Raider and even some Raider fans can crap on the man Davis all they want, but he sure does love his players.
    And everyone complaining about the guaranteed money, wait until Bradford signs his deal which will definitely open some eyes.
    Anyhow, I’m glad Al is shaking the market up, makes other owners open up their tight wallets.
    And this is coming from a Niner fan.

  32. No doubt rookie money is out if control, but face last year reams could nit get top ten picks on camp on time because no one wanted to budge first. The raiders got their man in camp on time and that is what matters

  33. Tango you ignorant hick: what are you trying to say by calling me AlDavisIsAMuslim? Just proving what a retarded inbred hillbilly you are? I notice you stick to one sentence comebacks to reduce the number of grammatical errors but you still can’t spell, idiot. I’ll tell you again: it’s YOU’RE laughable. And you are you POS.

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