Eagles’ contract details for UDFAs Joseph Ngata, Eli Ricks, more

Breaking down contract details for Eagles’ UDFA class of 2023 originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

The Eagles selected seven players in the 2023 NFL Draft and then they got to work again, signing nine more players in their initial undrafted free agency class.

In recent years, the Eagles have used their deep pockets to lure UDFAs to Philly and it has worked. They’ve found some success stories like T.J. Edwards, Nate Herbig, Sua Opeta and last year brought in a few guys who made the roster.

The big difference last year was that the money didn’t end up telling the full story. Generally speaking, the way to figure out how much the Eagles like these UDFAs is to follow the money. It just didn’t pan out according to the money in 2022. Last year, they gave a ton to Carson Strong, who didn’t come close to making the roster. The second-lowest amount of guaranteed money went to Reed Blankenship, who is penciled in as a starting safety in Year 2.

So these contract details aren’t always an indicator of pending success in the same way draft rounds don’t always foretell success either. But it does give us a general sense of how much the Eagles like them to begin with.

Here’s a look back at the total guaranteed money in Eagles’ UDFA contracts in recent years:

2023: $918,000 (9 players)
2022: $1,747,000 (12 players)
2021: $480,000 (7 players)
2020: $764,000 (13 players

Last year, the Eagles gave Strong a contract with a $20,000 signing bonus and $320,000 guaranteed. The Eagles gave out a couple big signing bonuses this year but didn’t come close to that $320K guaranteed figure figure.

The top UDFA in this class is Clemson product Joseph Ngata. The 6-3, 217-pound receiver got a signing bonus of $30,000 and a total guarantee of $230K, according to a league source. Michigan State linebacker Ben VanSumeren got a $30K signing bonus and a total guarantee of $130K.

The one surprising note is that Alabama cornerback Eli Ricks got less guaranteed money and a lower signing bonus than fellow UDFA cornerback Mekhi Garner from LSU. It wasn’t that long ago that Ricks was expected by some to be a high draft pick. (But last year, CB Josh Jobe made the roster over two other UDFA corners who got more guaranteed money from the Eagles.)

All of these contracts are three-year deals that come with minimum base salaries of $750K, $915K and $1.03M over the next three seasons. If any of these UDFAs plays out their contracts, they would become restricted free agents after the 2025 season.

Heres’s a look at the details from this class:

Joseph Ngata, WR, Clemson

Total guarantee: $230,000
Signing bonus: $30,000

Ben VanSumeren, LB, Michigan State

Total guarantee: $130,000
Signing bonus: $30,000

Jadon Haselwood, WR, Arkansas

Total guarantee: $127,500
Signing bonus: $12,500

Mekhi Garner, CB, LSU

Total guarantee: $117,500
Signing bonus: $17,500

Ty Zentner, P, Kansas State

Total guarantee: $115,000
Signing bonus: $15,000

Trevor Reid, OT, Louisville

Total guarantee: $110,000
Signing bonus: $10,000

Brady Russell, TE, Colorado

Total guarantee: $48,000
Signing bonus: $8,000

Eli Ricks, CB, Alabama

Total guarantee: $40,000
Signing bonus: $10,000

Chim Okorafor, OL, Benedictine College

Total guarantee: $0
Signing bonus: $0

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