Breaking down Cards’ rookie contracts

May, 21, 2014
May 21
2:20
PM ET
Less than two weeks after the NFL draft, the Arizona Cardinals have signed six of their seven draft picks. Arizona announced the signings of fourth-round choice Logan Thomas, fifth-round selection Ed Stinson and sixth-round pick Walt Powell on Wednesday. Details of the contracts for Thomas and Powell were not yet available as of Wednesday afternoon, per ESPN Stats & Information.

First-round pick Deone Bucannon remains unsigned.

A few observations from going through the rookie contracts:
  • The numbers aren’t staggering. None of the signing bonuses jump out, but that’s mainly because rookie salaries are slotted.
  • Kareem Martin, John Brown and Stinson all received $420,000 base salaries in their first season.
  • The Cardinals liked to increase salaries by $90,000 per year in many cases. Stinson’s annual base grows by $90,000 in each season, and it’s prevalent in other contracts as well.

Here is a breakdown of the Cardinals' rookie contracts available per ESPN Stats & Information.

Troy Niklas, TE, Notre Dame -- second round

The highest drafted rookie to sign thus far, Niklas signed a four-year deal worth $2.77 million with a $1.246 million signing bonus.

He’ll earn $420,000 in base salary in his rookie season, but his total take home will be $1,666,036 million in 2014. In 2015, Niklas’ $602,877 salary is full guaranteed. In 2016, he’ll make $785,754 and $968,631 in 2017.

Niklas’ cap number exceeds $1 million in each of his last two seasons, with a cap hit of $1,09 million in 2016 and $1.28 million in 2017.

Kareem Martin, DE, North Carolina -- third round

Martin signed a four-year deal worth $2.27 million and received a $567,560 signing bonus.

His first-year base salary will be $420,000, but he’ll earn a total of $987,560 in 2014. In 2015 he will earn $528,000. In 2016, he’ll make $618,000, and $710,000 in 2017.

Martin’s average per year will come out to $710,890.

John Brown, WR, Pitt State -- third round

Brown signed a four-year contract worth $2.256 million with a $542,900 signing bonus.

This season, he’ll earn a base salary of $420,000, but will receive a total cash payout of $962,900 because of the signing bonus. In 2015 he is to earn $522,000. In 2016, it's $612,000. In the final year of his contract, Brown is to make $702,000.

His average per year comes out to $699,725.

Ed Stinson, DE, Alabama -- fifth round

Stinson’s four-year contract is worth $2.22 million and came with a $186,740 signing bonus.

In his rookie season, Stinson will earn a $420,000 base salary, but take home $606,740. A year later, his salary increases to $510,000 and then in 2016, he’ll earn $600,000. He is to make $690,000 in 2017.

Josh Weinfuss

ESPN Arizona Cardinals reporter

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