Bonus dispute root of Juron Criner delay

What’s the difference between promising Oakland Raiders receiver Juron Criner being at training camp Monday morning when the team opens camp and him not being there?

Fourteen thousand dollars.

According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the fifth-round pick has yet to sign his rookie contract with the Raiders because the two sides are squaring off over his signing bonus. Criner wants $158,000 while the team is offering $144,000. The Arizona receiver -- who was an OTA star for the Raiders -- is the only non-first round pick who is unsigned.

According to the source, Criner’s request is based on what the players drafted directly ahead of him were paid in bonus money. The total difference between the bonus money from the No. 26-32 picks in the fifth round is $18,000-plus dollars. From picks No. 30-32 in the round; the difference between the bonus money was in the $2,000 range for each pick. The bonus money for the No. 32 pick in the fifth round (Cincinnati safety George Iloka) was $160,000-plus. Criner wants the $2,000 bonus decline to continue.

However, the issue is Criner was the No. 33 pick of the round as a supplemental pick. The NFL’s Management Council’s guidelines for bonus slotting takes a significant decline for supplemental picks. The guidelines for the No. 33 pick of the fifth round is the $144,000 the Raiders are offering.

The dispute is very simple. The player wants to stay in line with what the picks ahead of him received and the team wants to stick to the league’s protocol for the pick. According to the source, Criner likely will not sign until the issue is resolved.