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NFL Lockout: Rookie Wage Scale On The Table; Draft Picks Set To Lose Money

According to a report, the NFL Players Association has already made at least one concession in the collective bargaining agreement negotiations — and it had to do with the rookie pay scale. It’s not unexpected — and was a reason many were telling underclassmen to jump to the NFL last year — but the concessions don’t bode well for draft picks both now and in the future.

MAC Football Blog’s Brian McIntyre broke it all down, explaining what the concessions were and what they mean.

The union included a cap on incentives, with the savings from rookie contacts passed along to veterans.

The owner’s proposal, which Green Bay Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy shed some light on the Washington Post in December, would require first-round picks to sign five-year contracts, with quarterbacks signing six-year agreements, and players in rounds 2-7 signing four-year deals.

Either way, the pay is decreasing here. McIntyre used C.J. Spiller as an example, citing the contract he signed following the 2010 NFL Draft. Spiller signed for four years at $24.3 million, $20 million of which is guaranteed. Under the union’s proposal, that contract would be four years for $18 million while the owner’s proposal puts it at five years, $8.6 million. Quite the difference.

For a player like Jake Locker, for instance, this is bad news. Not only was Locker seen as a high pick in the 2010 draft before sliding ahead of the 2011 draft, but he also stands to lose a significant amount of money whenever a new CBA is put in place.

For more on the negotiations, check out our NFL lockout StoryStream.