CHARLOTTE – It's official: The Panthers' entire class of 2017 is signed, sealed and ready to deliver.
Carolina's seven draft choices signed their four-year rookie contracts in the hours before and after the start of rookie minicamp. Running back Christian McCaffrey (first round), offensive tackle Taylor Moton (second) and fullback Alex Armah (sixth) signed Thursday on the eve of the camp. Wide receiver Curtis Samuel (second) and defensive end Daeshon Hall (third) signed prior to the first practice Friday morning, and cornerback Corn Elder (fifth) and kicker Harrison Butker (seventh) signed right after the practice.
"That's huge. It's official now," McCaffrey said. "All that's left is to play ball."
The signing process for draft picks has by-and-large become a formality since a rookie wage scale was established by the Collective Bargaining Agreement in 2011, but it's still a momentous moment for the draft picks. It symbolizes the accomplishment of each player's NFL dream, and on a practical level it signifies the securing of a coveted opportunity in a lucrative profession.
The team's five undrafted rookies also have signed on the dotted line - linebacker Ben Boulware, wide receiver Fred Ross, defensive end Bryan Cox, wide receiver Austin Duke and cornerback Cole Luke. All drafted rookies sign four-year contracts, while undrafted free agents sign three-year deals.
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