The New England Patriots on Wednesday became the first NFL team to sign their entire 2020 draft class.
Hours after reaching an agreement on a contract extension for veteran safety Patrick Chung that freed up needed salary cap space, the Patriots officially signed rookie Kyle Dugger to his first NFL contract.
ESPN’s Field Yates was the first to report the signing, which the team later announced.
Dugger, a versatile safety from Division II Lenoir-Rhyne, was New England’s top pick in this year’s draft (37th overall).
Dugger joins fellow safeties Chung, Devin McCourty, Adrian Phillips, Terrence Brooks, Cody Davis, Malik Gant and Adarius Pickett in a veteran-laden Patriots secondary.
New England drafted 10 players in all: Dugger, linebackers Josh Uche and Anfernee Jennings, tight ends Devin Asiasi and Dalton Keene, kicker Justin Rohrwasser, guard Michael Onwenu, guard/tackle Justin Herron, linebacker Cassh Maluia and center/guard Dustin Woodard. All 10 now are under contract.
The Patriots also have signed 15 undrafted free agents, including quarterbacks J’Mar Smith and Brian Lewerke, wide receivers Jeff Thomas and Will Hastings and running back J.J. Taylor.