With training camp opening Saturday, six of the Green Bay Packers’ 11 draft picks remain unsigned, including the team’s No. 1 pick, defensive tackle Justin Harrell.
A bit of a breakthrough might have been made Saturday, though. The Pittsburgh Steelers signed their No. 1 pick, outside linebacker Lawrence Timmons.
Timmons was the 15th player selected, just ahead of Harrell, who the Packers plucked at No. 16.
NFL rookie contracts — with the exception of quarterbacks — generally fall like dominos, with the signing of one player generally triggering the signings of the players selected directly before and after.
Timmons’ five-year deal is worth $15 million, with $8,053,000 of that guaranteed. The total value is 19 percent more than the five-year, $12.5 million contract last year’s No. 15 pick, cornerback Tye Hill, received from St. Louis. About $7.7 million of Hill’s money is guaranteed.
Last year’s No. 16 pick, safety Jason Allen of Miami, held out for 10 days before signing a six-year deal worth about $14 million that included $7.8 million in guaranteed money.
With those facts in mind, it’s a pretty good guess Harrell will sign a five-year contract worth in the ballpark of $16 million with $8.5 million guaranteed.
It’s been a typically slow signing period across the league. Before Timmons signed, only two first-rounders had come to terms: San Francisco with offensive tackle Joe Starkey (No. 28) and Chicago with tight end Greg Olsen (No. 31).
The Packers’ five signed picks: safety Aaron Rouse (third round), offensive lineman Allen Barbre (fourth round), wide receiver David Clowney (fifth round) and tight end Clark Harris and running back DeShawn Wynn (both seventh round).