We're now a mere eight days away from the start of 2010 Buffalo Bills training camp. We already know of one player - veteran defensive end Aaron Schobel - that won't be reporting to St. John Fisher College next Thursday. Two more players - rookies C.J. Spiller and Torell Troup - are the only remaining unsigned players on the roster, and thus should be the focal point of Bills discussions over the next week (or perhaps beyond).
I've been asked several times over the past few days which rookie deals are most important to getting Troup and, more importantly, Spiller, into camp on time. The operative words there are "on time," because the general slotting principle of rookie signings takes care of which players are most important to creating parameters for Spiller and Troup deals. In order to figure out which players are most important to getting deals in place for Buffalo's two rookies prior to next Thursday, we'll simply take a look at the rookies that are reporting to camp before Spiller and Troup do. Cliff's notes version: it's a virtual certainty that Troup will be signed, and a growing likelihood (approaching certainty) that Spiller will hold out.
We'll start with a look at the 13 rookies that will reporting to their respective training camps before Bills rookies. There are more rookies, but these 13 are particularly relevant to Buffalo's two remaining unsigned draftees.
|1||1||St. Louis Rams||Sam Bradford||QB||7/28 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|1||7||Cleveland Browns||Joe Haden||CB||7/23 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|1||8||Oakland Raiders||Rolando McClain||LB||7/28 (rookies and vets)|
|1||9||Buffalo Bills||C.J. Spiller||RB||7/29 (rookies and vets)|
|1||12||San Diego Chargers||Ryan Mathews||RB||7/25 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|1||13||Philadelphia Eagles||Brandon Graham||DE||7/26 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|2||37||Philadelphia Eagles||Nate Allen||S||7/26 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|2||38||Cleveland Browns||T.J. Ward||S||7/23 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|2||41||Buffalo Bills||Torell Troup||DT||7/29 (rookies and vets)|
|2||42||New England Patriots||Rob Gronkowski||TE||7/25 (rookies), 7/28 (vets)|
|2||43||Baltimore Ravens||Sergio Kindle||LB||7/26 (rookies), 7/28 (vets)|
|2||44||Oakland Raiders||Lamarr Houston||DT||7/28 (rookies and vets)|
|2||45||Denver Broncos||Zane Beadles||OG||7/26 (rookies), 7/31 (vets)|
Here are the rest of the 11 rookies (which makes 24 in all) that remain unsigned and play for teams that will report to camp before Buffalo. We're keeping the list to first- and second-round picks, as they're obviously most pertinent to Spiller and Troup.
|1||21||Cincinnati Bengals||Jermaine Gresham||TE||7/28 (rookies and vets)|
|1||22||Denver Broncos||Demaryius Thomas||WR||7/26 (rookies), 7/31 (vets)|
|1||25||Denver Broncos||Tim Tebow||QB||7/26 (rookies), 7/31 (vets)|
|1||27||New England Patriots||Devin McCourty||CB||7/25 (rookies), 7/28 (vets)|
|2||33||St. Louis Rams||Rodger Saffold||OT||7/28 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|2||48||Carolina Panthers||Jimmy Clausen||QB||7/28 (rookies and vets)|
|2||53||New England Patriots||Jermaine Cunningham||LB||7/25 (rookies), 7/28 (vets)|
|2||54||Cincinnati Bengals||Carlos Dunlap||DE||7/28 (rookies and vets)|
|2||57||Baltimore Ravens||Terrence Cody||DT||7/26 (rookies), 7/28 (vets)|
|2||59||Cleveland Browns||Montario Hardesty||RB||7/23 (rookies), 7/30 (vets)|
|2||62||New England Patriots||Brandon Spikes||LB||7/25 (rookies), 7/28 (vets)|
Finally, in case you're behind the times on tracking which first- and second-round picks have already signed league-wide, you're in luck: that list is a very short one.
|2||35||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||Brian Price||DT||4 years, $5.35M, $2.75M G
|2||61||New York Jets||Vladimir Ducasse||OG||4 years, $3.225M, $1.435M G|