McCauley Agrees to Contract

Cornerback Marcus McCauley has arrived in Mankato as a deal has been finalized and will be announced later tonight or early Thursday.

As expected, the Vikings got one-third of their remaining contract signings done Wednesday afternoon, as third-round pick Marcus McCauley has agreed to what is believed to be a four-year deal with the Vikings.

McCauley got the minimum base salaries of $285,000 (2007), $370,000 (2008), $460,000 (2009) and $550,000 (2010), along with a $786,000 bonus that split the difference between the player picked above him (Lorenzo Booker, who got $795,000) and the player picked below him (Jacoby Jones, who got a $777,000 bonus).

With his signing, the Vikings have just first-round pick Adrian Peterson and second-rounder Sidney Rice to get under contract. Rice is expected to have his deal finalized before practices begin Friday morning, while a Peterson deal may have to wait until more players in the top 10 picks have finalized deals.

The Vikings have worked their way up the draft-pick ladder in getting six of their eight selections signed and in camp.

Players checked into Minnesota State, Mankato on Wednesday with meetings and conditioning tests scheduled for Thursday and the first practice scheduled for 9 a.m. Friday.

McCauley started 32 games during his career at Fresno State and helped the Bulldogs to three straight bowl games in his opening three seasons. He was projected as a potential first-round selection had he entered the NFL draft after his junior season, but stayed for his senior year. In that 2006 season, he started nine games, led the Bulldogs with seven passes defensed and posted a career-high 55 tackles despite losing his starting job late in the year. He earned second-team All-WAC honors as a junior, when he started a career-high 13 games and broke up seven passes on the season.

He is expected to contend for the Vikings' nickel-back role with Dovonte Edwards behind starters Antoine Winfield and Cedric Griffin. Ronyell Whitaker and Charles Gordon also received playing time at cornerback last year.

VU will update the signing status as information becomes available.

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