Rookie mini-camps are in the books and now it is on to the next phase of offseason workouts: O.T.A.’s. There is another phase of the offseason that is just as important: Monetary investments in the newbies of the franchise better known as rookies.
On Thursday rookie running back and former Florida State standout Devonta Freeman agreed to a deal. With the signing, Freeman becomes the eighth of the nine Falcons’ draft pick to sign a contract with the team.
It is a possibility that Freeman can make roughly the same amount as last year’s 103rd overall pick, Alex Okafor, who signed a four-year contract worth close to $2.65 million.
A day earlier, the Falcons reached an agreement with first-round offensive tackle Jake Matthews and second-round defensive end Ra’Shede Hageman.
Five Falcons’ draft picks, cornerback Ricardo Allen, linebacker Prince Shembo, linebacker Yawin Smallwood, linebacker Marquis Spruill, and linebacker Tyler Starr all signed four-year contracts with the Falcons on Sunday.
Of the nine Falcons’ 2014 draft picks, the odd man out is third-round safety Dezmen Southward, who has yet to sign on the dotted line for the Birds.
Although Freeman is going to work extra hard in the offseason training camps and preseason to earn the starting position at running back, the expectations are that he will get his fair share of snaps behind the bigger bruiser Steven Jackson.