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Done Deal: First-Round Pick Wraps Contract Talks

Treylon Burks, the 18th pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, is guaranteed to make close to $15 million for his first four seasons.

NASHVILLE – It wasn’t so long ago that the signing of a first-round draft pick was often a dramatic and drawn-out process.

The Tennessee Titans have – for the most part – trended in the opposite direction in recent years.

Tuesday, more than two months before the start of training camp, they agreed to contract terms with wide receiver Treylon Burks, the team’s first-round pick – and the 18th overall selection – in last month's NFL Draft. The deal is for four years with $14.37 million fully guaranteed and -- as with all first-round picks -- a team option for a fifth season. Burks gets a $7.63 million signing bonus.

ESPN was first to report the deal. The Titans formally announced the transaction later in the day.

Burks, who played three seasons at Arkansas, is the fifth of Tennessee's nine draft picks this year. Running back Hassan Haskins (fourth round), wide receiver Kyle Philips (fifth round), defensive back Theo Jackson (sixth round) and inside linebacker Chance Campbell (sixth round) agreed to terms last week.

The early deal with Burks marked the fourth time in the last five years the Titans reached agreement with their first-round pick in May. Cornerback Caleb Farley (2021), defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons (2019) and linebacker Rashaan Evans (2018) all completed negotiations in the same timeframe.

The lone exception for the past half-decade was 2020, when tackle Isaiah Wilson wasn’t signed until Aug. 3. He was the final pick of the first round to sign that year.

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Burks signed a fully guaranteed $14.369-million contract with a $7.63-million signing bonus, according to Pro Football Network. Burks' year-by-year salaries, per Pro Football Network, are: $705,000; $939,413; $1.567 million; and $2.664 million; plus guaranteed training-camp roster bonuses of $400,000 in 2023 and $425,000 in 2024, per PFN.

Burks is expected to help fill the void left when the team traded Pro Bowl receiver A.J. Brown to the Philadelphia Eagles. Brown signed a four-year contract worth up to $100 million with the Eagles.

The 6-foot-2, 225-pounder has often been described as having similar traits to Brown, who caught 185 passes for 2,995 yards and 24 touchdowns in three seasons for the Titans. In Burks’ last two seasons at Arkansas, he caught a combined 117 passes for 1,924 yards (16.4-yard average) and 18 touchdowns.

Burks did not get off to the best start at the Titans’ rookie minicamp on Friday. He struggled with what appeared to be conditioning or breathing issues in the very first individual drill. Burks, who was using an inhaler at one point, left the practice field once, returned later, and then left a second time.

“I think it’s hard to think (draft picks) can recreate with a trainer how we do things, and we see that with guys that have come back and started with our offseason program, and guys that have joined a few weeks in,” Titans coach Mike Vrabel said. “It’s just different. I know they’re working and they think they’re trying to get in shape. But that’s just not the case so, that’s something we have to focus on and make sure we’re getting some work in, but with all of them, we’re trying to be as smart as we can.”

Burks had no such issues Saturday at the rookie minicamp, going through the full day’s practice.

The Titans have high hopes for Burks, who will join a receiver room featuring veteran Robert Woods, rookie Kyle Philips, third-year pro Nick Westbrook-Ikhine and a pair of 2021 draft picks – Dez Fitzpatrick and Racey McMath – among others.

“He’s been an exciting player in the SEC, big yards per catch, he’s a big target,” Titans general manager Jon Robinson said after drafting Burks. “He’s fast. He’s competitive. He’s a player that we spent time with. He came here on a 30 visit, (we) got to know him, and excited to get him here in the offense and watch him work.”