Jadeveon Clowney, Texans agree to rookie contract

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Jadeveon Clowney and the Texans have agreed on a four-year deal that will pay the defensive end handsomely, and give Houston a pass rush to rival any in the NFL.

Jadeveon Clowney and the Houston Texans have come to an agreement on a rookie contract, according to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle. Clowney earned a healthy paycheck after being selected No. 1 overall in the 2014 NFL Draft. Per McClain, the deal is worth $22.272 million guaranteed, with a $14.518 million signing bonus.

Clowney's deal is in line with those of the last three No. 1 overall picks, Eric Fisher (2013), Andrew Luck (2012) and Cam Newton (2011), all of whom were selected after the NFL agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement with players that reined in spending on rookie contracts. Clowney's contract will include a team option for a fifth year worth that season's transition tag, which is standard for top-10 picks.

Clowney has been touted as a potential superstar since his days as a top high school recruit. He put together a prolific career at South Carolina (albeit with a somewhat disappointing, hot take-inducing junior year) before declaring for the NFL Draft with a year of eligibility left. Clowney was a first-team All-SEC and All-American in 2012 and 2013, and was named SEC Defensive Player after a sophomore season in which he racked up 13 sacks among 23.5 tackles for loss.

With Clowney signed, offensive guard Xavier Su'a-Filo is the only rookie yet to be signed by the Texans. There is still a significant number of first-round draft packs yet to be signed by NFL teams. The list:

  • No. 2 pick Greg Robinson, OT, St. Louis Rams
  • No. 3 pick Blake Bortles, QB, Jacksonville Jaguars
  • No. 7 pick Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • No. 8 pick Justin Gilbert, CB, Cleveland Browns
  • No. 10 pick Eric Ebron, TE, Detroit Lions
  • No. 11 pick Taylor Lewan, OT, Tennessee Titans
  • No. 13 pick Aaron Donald, DT, St. Louis Rams
  • No. 16 pick Zack Martin, OT, Dallas Cowboys
  • No. 19 pick Ja'Wuan James, OT, Miami Dolphins
  • No. 22 pick Johnny Manziel, QB, Cleveland Browns
  • No. 24 pick Darqueze Dennard, CB, Cincinnati Bengals
  • No. 26 pick Marcus Smith, OLB, Philadelphia Eagles
  • No. 29 pick Dominique Easley, DT, New England Patriots
  • No. 31 pick Bradley Roby, CB, Denver Broncos

Now that Clowney's contract is set, it could encourage other first-rounders to sign. We'll see in the coming days.

With Clowney in tow, the Texans should have a pass rush to rival any team in the NFL, with J.J. Watt forming the other half of a formidable duo. The Texans were rumored to be trading the No. 1 overall pick for several months, knowing that several teams coveted Clowney and that they were already well-set in the defensive front. Clowney's freakish athleticism may have made him difficult to pass up, however.

According to McClain, Clowney could stand up in Romeo Crennel's defense.

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