In past years, some first overall picks were signed to contracts before the draft actually began. Last year, due to the lockout, that was impossible.
This year, the presence of a rookie wage scale makes it much easier to get these deals done, since there’s no longer much — if anything — to negotiate.
Thus, the Colts could, in theory, sign the first overall pick long before the draft happens. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello tells us that the Colts could sign the top pick as of Friday, after a pair of coin flips lock in the draft order.
With owner Jim Irsay clearly concerned about the P.R. issues relating to the departure of the team’s franchise quarterback, why not get the next franchise quarterback under contract before sending Peyton packing?