49ers sign 6th-round draft pick Nick Zakelj to 4-yr, $3.88 million rookie deal

Jun 2, 2022 at 3:08 PM--

The San Francisco 49ers have signed former Fordham OT Nick Zakelj to his rookie four-year deal. The team made him the eighth pick (No. 187 overall) in the sixth round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

"At the Senior Bowl he slid down to guard and I think got better every day there," general manager John Lynch said on April 30. "We liked his traits, liked his makeup a lot, another captain at his school, Nick Zakelj."

Zakelj started 26 games at left tackle during his final three seasons with the Rams. However, he received reps at guard during the Senior Bowl.

"I did play tackle in college, so that is obviously where I'm most comfortable at," Zakelj told reporters after being drafted. "I think getting those reps at the Senior Bowl at guard and broaden my horizons, getting some flexibility, I think that showed value throughout the whole process. I definitely see myself as more of a guard at the next level."

Thanks to the NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), which runs through the 2030 season, all rookie contracts are for a length of four years. First-round selections come with an option for a fifth year, which doesn't apply to any of the 49ers' nine draft selections.

The total value of Zakelj's four-year contract is set to be $3,884,096, per OverTheCap.com. That includes a signing bonus of $224,096 and a 2022 salary-cap figure of $761,024.

Zakelj believes his familiarity with the 49ers' scheme will benefit his transiton to the NFL.

"I'd say it's fairly similar [to Fordham's], with a lot of zone reads in there, too," Zakelj said. "At Fordham, we didn't really go as much wide zone and getting out in space with the pull stuff that the Niners like to do. We played a lot of tight zone, maybe even some counter here and there. I definitely think it will be a treat having a seamless transition. I'm excited to get a better grasp on the offense and learn as much as I can."

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