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Published on 07/22/2010 at Thu Jul 22 19:15.
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WR Dez Bryant

On Thursday rookie wide receiver Dez Bryant signed with the Dallas Cowboys. The 24th overall pick of the 2010 NFL draft signed a five-year, $11.8 million deal that includes $8.5 million guaranteed, ESPN reports.

Of the 32 1st round draft picks, Bryant is the first to sign.  Being the first, he may set off a chain reaction of signings.  Two picks before the Cowboys chose Bryant, the Broncos drafted fellow receiver Demaryius Thomas.  Bryant’s $8.5 million dollar guarantee may be a key factor in the Broncos negotiations with Thomas, as well as Tim Tebow.

The Cowboys start their Training Camp in two days, the Broncos on the other hand have more time to finalize contracts, as their rookies won’t be reporting until Monday (the 26th). The Broncos four drafted rookies currently under contracts are J.D. Walton, Jammie Kirlew, Syd’Quan Thompson and Perrish Cox, with Walton the only high draft pick (3rd round).  According to Mike Klis of the Denver Post, Eric Decker and Eric Olsen’s contracts are all but signed. Once the Broncos sign them, only OL Zane Beadles, Tebow and Thomas will remain unsigned.


The Broncos want to get Demaryius Thomas signed and practicing with the offense as soon as possible. (AP Photo)

Last season’s first rounders Knowshon Moreno and Robert Ayers each held out while negotiating contracts, which possibly affected their rookie seasons negatively. There is no real way to know, but Ayers’ lack of production could partially have been a result of lack of knowledge of Denver’s defensive scheme.

This year the Broncos are hoping Thomas and Tebow won’t miss any practices while holding out for a bigger contract. The signing of Bryant may speed up the rookie signing process for the Broncos.  The bar has been set to what a 24th pick is worth, now the Broncos should be able to calculate what a 22nd round pick is worth. has a nifty little chart predicting the 2010 first rounders’ guaranteed money in their contracts.  According to their calculations, Thomas can expect $8,747,615, with Tebow getting $8,728, 934. I expect a lot of signings over the next week, let’s hope the players agree with the Broncos on their worth, and not try to pull a Michael Crabtree.

  • Big_Pete

    I'd have to think that because Dez is as smack dab in the middle of our draft picks as you can get, we should see signings very, very soon. No way there is any type of holdout by Thomas or Tebow. Whether they happen by the weekend or by next thursday is completely irrelevant, as teams tend to drag their feet, much like we do when we have bills to pay. We might have enough money to pay the bill ten fold, yet we won't pay it early, we'll wait till the day before we get slapped with a late fee to pay it. It's just in human nature to not give over your money until you absolutely have to.

  • crazykid

    Hey Jon, you forgot we signed JD Walton too. Other than that, good article :) GO BRONCOS!

  • Jon

    Thanks, crazykid! Will fix…

  • MrEast

    Walterfootball said that Dez Bryant would be one of the last to sign if not the last. He also said he would be asking for top 10 money. WRONG AGAIN Walter.