Signing bonuses for undrafted players typically can give a fan a read on what players are poised to make a legitimate run at a roster spot in training camp. So far, Acme Packing Company has heard word of 11 undrafted free agents signing with the Green Bay Packers, but only three who have received signing bonuses as part of those contracts.
The three players, and their signing bonus values, are as follows:
- Curtis Bolton, ILB, Oklahoma: $7,000 (per Jim Owczarski)
- Greg Roberts, EDGE Baylor: $7,000 (per Aaron Wilson)
- Javien Hamilton, DB, Ole Miss: $4,200 (per Jim Owczarski)
Bolton was a one-year starter at Oklahoma who had a pre-draft visit with the Packes. However, in that one year, he racked up a ridiculous 142 total tackles, 12 of them for losses, with 4.5 sacks. At 6-foot and 228 pounds, Bolton posted a solid 4.59-second Pro Day at his Pro Day and should compete for a spot on special teams with James Crawford and seventh-round draft pick Ty Summers.
Roberts, a 6-foot-5, 258-pound college defensive end, never racked up substantial stats despite starting at least six games in each of his final three seasons. However, that may be due in part to Baylor’s defensive struggles, as they fielded a below-average defense in each of those years. Roberts did have a solid workout at Pro Day, with a 4.73-second 40 and a 7.11-second 3-cone drill. He also blocked a pair of field goal attempts as a junior, and given the Packers’ investment at edge rusher, his route to the roster would almost certainly come on special teams as well.
The final of these three players, Hamilton, is a bit of an unusual player for the Packers, as he stands just 5-foot-10 flat. In addition, he was only a part-time starter for Ole Miss, starting just eight games after coming in from junior college for 2017. Still, he recorded three interceptions as a junior and posted a 4.51-second 40 and 39-inch vertical at Pro Day.
The dollar amounts of the signing bonuses here are not enough to cause significant concern if any of the players are unable to push for a roster spot. However, it does represent at least some investment in each of them, and should be taken as a recognition that there was a market for their services outside of Green Bay.