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How much money do fourth round picks in the NFL Draft make?

Fourth round picks lead off the final day of the draft. We break down what kind of salaries to expect for them in their rookie contracts.

General view of the 2023 NFL Draft stage at Union Station. Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The 2023 NFL Draft is headed into the final day, which is truly for the diehards. The first two days cover the first three rounds, which brings some of the more high profile players. The third day runs rounds four through seven where the diamonds in the rough are find. They won’t all turn into Tom Brady, but Super Bowls can be won or lost with day three picks.

Fourth round picks will start to fly a bit under the radar, but they’ll have a chance to earn their keep. They will sign a four-year deal, per the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement. They can begin renegotiating their contract after their third year. They can become an unrestricted free agent when their contract expires after their fourth season, although if they play well enough, their team could use the franchise or transition tag.

What will the salary be for fourth-round picks in the NFL Draft?

The NFL has a rookie wage scale for all drafted players, courtesy of the CBA. The CBA provides for a minimum rookie salary of $750,000 in 2023. Players can make more than that, bust most rookie contracts will include a 2023 salary of $750,000.

Contract reference site Over The Cap provides a rundown of rookie cap numbers for this year’s class. The numbers might move a little, but this provides a solid framework to work from for determining how much each pick will make in 2023, 2024, 2025, and 2026.

The first pick of the fourth round will sign a contract worth approximately $4.72 million and receive a signing bonus of approximately $887,172. The second pick of the round will receive a $4.707 million contract with a $867,484 signing bonus. The numbers decrease each pick until the 33rd pick where the player will receive a $4.376 million contract with a $536,532 signing bonus.

Salary escalators

Players drafted in the fourth round can earn something called a proven performance escalator (PPE). There are three levels of PPE and they are earned by playing a certain percentage of offensive or defensive snaps for a team over their first three seasons, and also by earning a Pro Bowl nod. If they earn a PPE, their fourth-year base salary will be increased. Over The Cap offers a complete breakdown of PPEs.