GREEN BAY, Wis. – Green Bay Packers first-round pick Eric Stokes had a great Wednesday.
First, he signed his first NFL contract. Then, he went on the practice field and had a strong day at the team's fifth organized team activity of the spring.
The four-year deal is projected to be worth about $11.93 million and include a signing bonus of just more than $6 million, according to Spotrac. As with all first-round picks, there will be a fifth-year team option.
With Stokes under contract, eight of the team’s nine draft picks have signed. The exception is third-round receiver Amari Rodgers.
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Stokes, whose combination of size (6-foot 5/8), speed (4.29 in the 40) and production (four interceptions; 10 completions allowed vs. eight passes defended, according to Sports Info Solutions) made him the 29th pick of the draft, took his lumps in front of reporters last week but was one of the more impressive players on the field for Wednesday’s OTA practice.
He was all over a couple of underneath routes, limiting a pair of completions to minimal gains. Later, quarterback Kurt Benkert went deep up the right sideline to returning receiver Reggie Begelton but Stokes was in Begelton’s hip pocket the whole way. With blanket coverage and no window for a completion, the ball sailed over the players’ heads for an incompletion.
“Over my career, I’ve been blessed to coach Trae Waynes, who’s pretty much the same way. Trae could run like 4.26,” Packers defensive backs coach Jerry Gray said last week. “You’re not afraid to put them out on the edge and leave them against fast wide receivers. The thing you have to do is teach them how to regulate their speed, because every play is not a go. These guys who can really run fast, you have to teach them how to regulate it and not get top speed every time, and then that way they can actually play better on the intermediate and underneath routes. My job is really to teach him how to regulate his speed.”