On Friday, we pointed out that not every first-round pick’s contract will be a breeze to negotiate, given the question of whether the four-year deals will be fully or partially guaranteed.
As it turns out, things could get interesting for more than picks 21 through 25-ish. Per a league source with knowledge of the dynamics, pick 20 also could entail a bit of a fight.
Though last year’s 20th overall selection (Bucs defensive end Adrian Clayborn) received a fully-guaranteed contract, the guys taken with picks 17 through 19 (Pats left tackle Nate Solder, Chargers defensive lineman Corey Liuget, and Giants cornerback Prince Amukamura, respectively) got the same deal that defensive lineman Phil Taylor received from the Browns at pick 21 (i.e., three years guaranteed and an early roster bonus in year four that would force the team to make a decision on whether to keep him or cut him).
This year, then, the question will be whether the Titans will give receiver Kendall Wright a four-year, fully guaranteed contract. Per the source, the Chargers and Bears used the same structure in 2012 as the Chargers and Giants, respectively, used in 2011 for the payments in the fourth year. Thus, it will be easy for the Titans to argue that Clayborn’s contract (the first first-round pick done in 2011) was an aberration, and that Wright should have the same structure as picks 18 and 19.
It also remains to be seen whether the Bengals give Kirkpatrick a fully-guaranteed deal at pick 17.
Yes, it may be a little confusing. The point is that, for a handful of the picks in round one, it will be a little more complicated to get these deals done.