Jake Locker Should Have No Regrets

Jake Locker has signed with the Tennessee Titans, agreeing to a four-year deal worth $12 million. This will lead to a somewhat-misguided discussion about how much Locker passed up by returning to Washington for his senior year.

In the wake of the NFL’s new collective bargaining agreement, rookie contracts have returned to the realm of normalcy this year. No longer will you see a $78 million deal like Sam Bradford signed last year.

But there are a couple misnomers about lamenting how much Locker missed out on. First, he wouldn’t have been the second pick in the draft if he came out after his junior year. He wouldn’t have been the third or 10th or probably even 20th pick. In fact, some think Locker might not have been a first-round pick.

Second, Locker needed another year of seasoning in a pro-style offense. If adequate preparation means he has a longer and more successful NFL career, then he’ll make up for the lost money in his second and third contracts. Or at least a large chunk of it.

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