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Monday, July 26, 2010
Eight NFC South rookies unsigned

By Pat Yasinskas
ESPN.com

Remember, everything is very much in flux as we near the start of training camps later this week. But the NFC South isn’t in bad shape when it comes to unsigned draft picks.

As of the moment, and this could change at any time, there are only eight division rookies not signed.

Atlanta has only first-round pick Sean Weatherspoon left. Carolina has only quarterback Jimmy Clausen not under contract.

Tampa Bay and New Orleans each have three players left to sign. The Bucs haven’t signed first-round pick Gerald McCoy, second-round pick Arrelious Benn or seventh-rounder Cody Grimm. The Saints still are working on first-rounder Patrick Robinson, second-round choice Charles Brown and third-round pick Jimmy Graham.

I wouldn’t worry too much about Grimm. That one should be just a formality and should come soon. Brown, Graham and Benn probably will come before camps start. Their agents are just waiting for some more players in similar draft spots to sign and establish the market values.

Clausen may be just a second-round pick, but his deal could be complicated. As a quarterback who the Panthers have said they viewed as a first-round talent, he might be looking for more than the draft picks around him. This likely will have to be a creative contract with lots of incentives that would pay Clausen nicely if he ends up as the starter.

There hasn’t been a lot of action on first-round picks yet, and the fact Robinson and Weatherspoon were taken later in the round probably means the framework for similar deals will come in the next few days. As the No. 3 overall pick, McCoy could be a challenge for the Bucs to have done for the start of camp.