The draft launched four weeks ago tonight. In all, 253 men were picked.
And 174 of them have signed their first NFL contracts.
It’s an amazing and dramatic change in the process. While much of it comes from changes to the CBA that make first-round contracts much easier to negotiate, the lower-round contracts always were easy to negotiate. But the negotiations typically didn’t begin until after Memorial Day, at the earliest.
Typically, things didn’t even start to heat up until after the Fourth of July.
Not every team has decided to accelerate the process. The Cowboys, Saints, Raiders, Jaguars, and Rams have signed none of their picks, and only 10 of 32 first-rounders are under contract.
Still, it’s a real change from past years, with only 79 picks unsigned as training camp is two full months away.