Thursday, May 29, 2014
Breaking down rookie deals so far
By Todd Archer
IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys have signed six of their nine draft picks with Zack Martin, DeMarcus Lawrence and Anthony Hitchens remaining to agree to deals.
Fifth-round pick Devin Street is the top pick to sign thus far, receiving a signing bonus of $201,972. The team quickly reached deals with seventh rounders Ben Gardner ($59,172 signing bonus), Will Smith ($50,352), Ahmad Dixon ($50,352), Ken Bishop ($45,896) and Terrance Mitchell ($45,896).
The six picks received base salaries of $420,000 (2014), $510,000 (2015), $600,000 (2016) and $690,000 (2017).
According to ESPN Stats & Information, the Cowboys have $5.609 million cap room with their top 51 contracts. The deals for Martin, Lawrence and Hitchens will be inside the top 51 once they are completed, which will chew up some of that space.
The Cowboys will gain $5.5 million in salary cap space Monday when Miles Austin's release becomes official. Austin, who signed with the Cleveland Browns, was designated a post-June 1 release in March.
The Cowboys do not need Austin's cap relief to sign their draft picks, but it will give them more room for potential deals for Dez Bryant or Tyron Smith in the offseason, as well as money for practice squad players, signings later in the season and injury settlements.