(247 SPORTS) – Bradley Chubb is now a very rich man.
The Denver Broncos’ first-round pick is at team headquarters on Thursday to sign his four-year rookie contract.
The deal, based on the league’s slotted pay scale, is expected to be worth $27.271 million, with a $17.914 million signing bonus and 2018 salary cap hit of nearly $5 million. It also includes a fifth-year team option.
Chosen with the fifth overall selection in April’s draft, Chubb stood out during the Broncos’ Organized Team Activities and minicamp, flashing the potential that made him the best defensive player to emerge from this year’s class. He’s been specially tutored by a pair of Canton-bound superstars — Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware, who’s returned to the team as a pass-rush consultant.
“I think he’s getting the best of both worlds,” Miller said last week. “I mean, he’s got a Hall of Famer. He’s got a guy that has done everything right. You’ve got a technician. You’ve got ‘Captain Football’ in DeMarcus and then you’ve got me that’s going to keep it all the way real about everything. Tell you how I feel and is going to be honest. Not that DeMarcus isn’t—he does all of that stuff too, but you’ve got more of a laidback leader too. He’s got the best of both worlds. I wish I would’ve had that combo. DeMarcus taught me so much, so hopefully he’ll be able to learn some of the same stuff I learned from DeMarcus as well.”
A relentless pass-rusher equipped with equal parts power and explosion, the former North Carolina State star was named a first-team All-American and first-team All-ACC choice last season. His 26 tackles for loss, 10 sacks and three forced fumbles earned him the Hendricks Award for best defensive end and Bronko Nagurski Award for best defender.
The Broncos landed him after he stunningly fell into their laps, a scenario which prevented a blockbuster trade with the Buffalo Bills that would have netted the club multiple first-round selections.
Chubb joined a crowded group of edge rushers, featuring Miller, Shane Ray and Shaquil Barrett, but projects as a Week 1 starter due to Ray’s latest wrist setback and subsequent surgery. A college defensive end, he’s in the process of converting to outside linebacker in the Broncos’ 3-4 scheme, though head coach Vance Joseph revealed Chubb will see time at both spots this season.
“Schematically, he won’t change our defense,” Joseph say during OTAs.” He’s playing the SAM linebacker position, which is obviously opposite of the WILL, so he’s an outside linebacker. On sub downs, he’s playing defensive end. Last year, just talking numbers, we were in base probably 35 percent of the time and in sub the rest. He’s going to be an outside linebacker/defensive end on sub. So schematically, we won’t change what we’re doing because of one player.”
With Chubb putting pen to paper, third-round running back Royce Freeman is the only player from Denver’s 10-man draft class to remain unsigned.