Robert Griffin III got his deal. Maybe Morris Claiborne will get his soon. (Hey, how did those cheerleaders get in there?)
While good news happening for our beloved rivals the Washington Redskins is not normally something to cheer about here, the completion of a contract with the number two overall pick, Robert Griffin III, may actually may be good news in the long run for the Dallas Cowboys. Dallas' own pick 6 in the draft, Morris Claiborne, is the only unsigned player on the roster, and the prevailing theory is that his deal would not happen until some of the other top draftees (I believe the top eight players were unsigned prior to RGIII's contract getting done) would have to sign for Dallas to decide what it would have to commit.
The main sticking point was said to be the offset language, which simply put is whether the guaranteed money would have to all be paid to the player if he was cut and signed by someone else, or whether the new contract would offset some of that guaranteed payout. According to reports on RGIIIs contract from both NFL.com and ProFootballTalk, the contract does not contain offset language. As such, the contract will likely become a model for the other top picks:
. . . the No. 2 overall pick in this year's NFL draft, will receive $21,119,098 fully guaranteed over four years. The contract has a team option for a fifth year. (Emphasis added.)
With the absence of offset language in the contract, fully guaranteed actually does mean exactly what it says. It also means that Griffin can look forward to a nice, secure and very lucrative few years. He and the team probably feel that he is almost certain to make it as a player, so the offset was something that would never come into play anyway.
One way or another, as the article observes, the other teams, including the Cowboys, will be studying the full contract closely, and will likely be making very similar offers to their top picks. I think that this means that Morris Claiborne is certain to be on the field day one of training camp. And after the rather bumpy week the Cowboys have had so far with Dez Bryant getting arrested and the lingering injury to Danny Coale, that is something to celebrate.