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June 11, 2012

Cowboys go against tradition and get started early in signing draft picks

In signing draft picks wide receiver Danny Coale, tight end James Hanna and linebacker Caleb McSurdy to contracts on Monday, the Cowboys went against their norm of waiting on right before training camp to do deal with their draft picks.

Coale (fourth rounder), Hanna (sixth rounder) and McSurdy (seventh rounder) received four-year deals with base salaries of $390,000, $480,000, $570,000 and $660,000 from 2012-15. 
The Cowboys still must do deals with first-round cornerback Morris Claiborne, defensive end Tyrone Crawford (third), linebacker Kyle Wilber (fourth) and safety Matt Johnson (fourth).

Look for the rest of the players to be signed and on the field well before training camp opens in July as the Cowboys continue to change the way they do business.

With the new rookie wage scale, there is little negotiation in the rookie draft picks signings so there is no reason to wait to do the deals.

The trickiest deal may be Claiborne who is expected to get a deal similar to the four-year, $16.2 million contract Atlanta receiver Julio Jones got last year as the sixth overall pick.

None of the top eight picks from around the league have signed contracts so that could slow the process.

Clarence Hill

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