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Robert Griffin III Finally Signs With Redskins

Finally, all the haggling came to an end and the Robert Griffin III era with the Washington Redskins began in earnest today with Griffin signing a contract worth $21,119,098 over the next four years. He can join his teammates in the final days of a five-day mini-camp.

Griffin offered on Twitter: “Well people…. It’s Time to go to Work!!! off the unemployment line and oh yeah HTTR!!!!”

The deal is very much like the one given to last year’s second-overall pick, Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller, and about $12 million less than the guaranteed figure given to St. Louis Rams offensive tackle Jason Smith, the last second-overall pick signed before the rookie wage scale went into effect. Smith signed a six-year, $61.775 million deal with $33 million in guarantees.

Griffin’s contract, which includes a $13.8 million signing bonus, contains no “offset language,” according to one person with knowledge of the deal who spoke on condition of anonymity because all its aspects have not been made public. That provision had been a stumbling block in negotiations for many top picks.

Without the language, the Redskins would owe Griffin the full amount of his guaranteed contract if they release him and he signs with another team, regardless of his salary from the new franchise.

As with all contracts given to the top-10 picks, there is a team option for a fifth year. Should the Redskins exercise that option, they would pay Griffin the transition tag value in the fifth season, which is the average salary among the 10 highest-paid quarterbacks in that year.

The highest draft pick to sign before today was Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly, who was taken with the ninth overall pick and received a four-year, $12.58 million deal.

The Redskins traded up with the St. Louis Rams from the sixth slot to the second to take the highly productive Baylor quarterback, and they paid a high price in doing so. Washington gave up their sixth overall pick in 2012, their first-round picks in 2013 and 2014, and a second-round pick in 2012 for the pleasure of ensuring their franchise quarterback.

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