The New Orleans Saints secured deals with the majority of their rookie class Monday.
The team announced that it has agreed to terms with linebacker Hau’oli Kikaha, quarterback Garrett Grayson, defensive lineman Tyeler Davison, linebacker Davis Tull, defensive back Damian Swann and running back Marcus Murphy.
Terms were not disclosed. That leaves offensive lineman Andrus Peat (first round), linebacker Stephone Anthony (first) and cornerback P.J. Williams (third) as the only unsigned members of the class.
While there used to be drama surrounding the signing of draft picks, that has changed since the NFL installed a slotting system. The parameters of many deals are already in place, with only minor details left to haggle over.
With the Cleveland Browns on Monday signing the No. 12 pick, Danny Shelton, to a four-year, $11.7 million deal that includes a $6.7 million signing bonus, it shouldn’t take New Orleans long to strike a deal with Peat.
Williams presents an interesting case. He was at one time projected to be a first- or second-round pick, but his stock dropped after he was picked up on suspicion of DUI before the draft. His own perceived value and where he was drafted could make negotiations more difficult than usual.
Saints rookie minicamp begins Friday. There, the players will begin familiarizing themselves with the team facilities and their playbooks. During the three minicamp practices, players are allowed to work on the fields, but not at full-speed.
By signing before the sessions begin, players do not have to fear injury as much, which has been an issue. Jacksonville first-round pick Dante Fowler Jr. suffered a torn ACL in one session and is expected to miss the season.