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Predicting the Drafted Patriots Rookie Contracts

In order to get a sense of the Patriots rookies, I've decided to try and project how much each contract will cost New England.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With the draft over, we can turn our attention back to the most entertaining aspect of sports: the salary cap.

Due to the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that was struck during the lock-out, rookies have their contracts on a tighter leash than they've had in past. In fact, it's become a lot each to come to terms with the rookies because they're so limited to the structure of the deal.

The way rookies are paid is fairly simple. Each team receives a pool of money, of which they're able to distribute to their rookies. The pool grows with the salary cap, up to a 5% increase; after which, the pool grows 0.5% points. As a result of this year's cap increase, we can expect the pool to grow 6.57%.

We are able to look into the past to determine the contracts received by last season's prospects and increase their value by 6.57%- but former agent Joel Corry expects the higher draft picks to receive a lion's share of the pool growth. Based upon last year's draft picks, increased by the 6.57% of new space, we can weight the added money to determine the contracts of this year's class.

Pick Old Player New Bonus Base APY
29 $6,816,000.00 Dominique Easley $7,208,536.21 $4,024,208.21 $3,184,328.00 $1,802,134.05
62 $3,374,000.00 Jimmy Garoppolo $3,709,471.47 $1,169,603.47 $2,539,868.00 $927,367.87
105 $2,630,000.00 Bryan Stork $2,891,114.39 $731,366.39 $2,159,748.00 $722,778.60
130 $2,461,000.00 James White $2,678,883.53 $518,467.53 $2,160,416.00 $669,720.88
140 $2,361,000.00 Cameron Fleming $2,561,591.19 $401,091.19 $2,160,500.00 $640,397.80
179 $2,270,000.00 Jon Halapio $2,403,151.05 $243,211.05 $2,159,940.00 $600,787.76
198 $2,253,000.00 Zach Moore $2,353,295.60 $192,807.60 $2,160,488.00 $588,323.90
206 $2,238,680.00 Jemea Thomas $2,325,141.72 $165,141.72 $2,160,000.00 $581,285.43
244 $2,206,000.00 Jeremy Gallon $2,226,750.81 $66,646.81 $2,160,104.00 $556,687.70

I've weighted the additional pool money by draft position. Note that the "BONUS" money is included in the "NEW" money.

We must also note that the average per year (APY) is not equal to the cap hit. NFL contracts are structured so the minimum salary allowed ($420,000 for 2014 rookies) increases each season the player is in the NFL; as a result, expect the cap hit for each player to be lower than the listed APY for their rookie season.

The expected cost to sign these rookies on an APY basis is $7,089,483.99.

Since the cap hit is lower than the APY, I offer a rough prediction of $6,560,000. I derived it taking 92.5% of the APY value, just based off a quick comparison between the cap hit and the APY of last year's rookie class.

This is just a quick-and-dirty projection. We'll report the actual numbers as soon as the players sign and the contract details become available.