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Sunday, April 21, 2024
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What NFL First-Round Picks Can Expect to Make in 2023

  • This year's No. 1 overall pick is expected to make $41.2M, including a $27M guaranteed signing bonus.
  • 2010 No. 1 pick Sam Bradford holds the NFL record for largest rookie contract at $78M over six years.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

First-round picks can secure life-changing money at the NFL Draft on Thursday night — but their hauls will amount to significantly less than those selected over a decade ago.

In 2010, quarterback Sam Bradford, who was picked first overall by the St. Louis Rams, signed a six-year, $78 million deal with $50 million in guarantees — which remains the largest rookie contract in NFL history. 

After that payday, the NFL’s CBA introduced a revised rookie wage scale in 2011. Cam Newton was the first-overall pick that year, signing a fully guaranteed four-year, $22 million deal with the Carolina Panthers. 

Rookie contracts have steadily gone up over the years with increases in the NFL’s salary cap, but they remain behind the peak levels of the pre-2011 CBA. 

First-rounders are projected to sign deals ranging from as high as $41 million to as low as $12 million this year, according to Spotrac.

  • No 1: $41.2 million, $26.9 million signing bonus
  • No. 16: $16.4 million, $8.9 million signing bonus
  • No. 31: $12.7 million, $6.2 million signing bonus

All first-round picks will sign four-year deals with guaranteed signing bonuses, and teams can extend their contracts for a fifth year. 

Last year’s overall No. 1, Travon Walker, signed a four-year, $37.3 million contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars, which included a $24.3 million signing bonus. 

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