Back in the "good old days," signing high draft picks was a laborious chore for NFL teams. Feelings were hurt, holdouts happened.
The new landscape laid out by the present collective bargaining agreement has eased this process considerably. Case in point: Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay tweeted Saturday that the team is getting close to a deal with No. 1 overall pick Andrew Luck.
Talks with A Luck's agent,Will Wilson(the brother of Andrew's mother) have been productive. Team Counsel Dan Emerson n Will r getting close!- Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay) June 2, 2012
Luck can expect a contract in the range of what quarterback Cam Newton received from the Carolina Panthers last year. Newton, the 2011 No. 1 pick, received a four-year, $22 million guaranteed deal that included a $14.5 million signing bonus.
(To show how much the rookie landscape has changed, St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford -- the 2010 No. 1 pick -- signed a six-year, $78 million contract with $50 million guaranteed.)
Luck has been absent from Colts organized team activities, but it has nothing to do with money. He remains prohibited from participating in team activities until after June 7, when his final exams at Stanford will be completed.
The Indianapolis Star reported Luck will attend the June 12-14 mandatory minicamp.