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Eagles sign first-round pick McDougle

Posted: Friday, August 01, 2003

PHILADELPHIA First-round pick Jerome McDougle ended a one-week holdout by signing a six-year contract Thursday with the Philadelphia Eagles.

The contract would pay McDougle up to $12.6 million with incentives over the first five years, including a $6.1 million signing bonus. A sixth year is voidable if he attains certain performance incentives. McDougle is expected to replace three-time Pro Bowl defensive end Hugh Douglas.

Colts

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. First-round pick Dallas Clark has agreed to terms with the Indianapolis Colts, and tight end from Iowa was expected to sign a contract in time to practice with the team Friday, agent Neil Cornrich said.

Cornrich said Thursday that the contract prohibited him from discussing terms of the deal.

Saints

NEW ORLEANS Defensive tackle Johnathan Sullivan, the first-round draft choice of the Saints, agreed to a seven-year deal Thursday. The contract includes an $11.4 million signing bonus, agent Len Rowe said. He declined to say how much the total deal is worth.

Ravens

WESTMINSTER, Md. First-round draft pick Terrell Suggs received more attention than he wanted Thursday during his first training camp practice with the Baltimore Ravens.

The 10th overall selection was the focus of good-natured verbal abuse from teammates, who repeatedly reminded the rookie defensive end that they had to endure three days of practice while he was embroiled in a contract dispute.

''They were talking about my fresh legs,'' Suggs said with a big grin. ''Everybody's got their eye on me. I know they're going to get me, especially because I came in late. I've just got to keep my eyes open.''

Suggs also was targeted by his coaches, who made him run sprints long after the practice ended.

''Mentally, I picked up right where I left off from minicamp,'' Suggs said. ''Conditioning-wise, I've got to pick it up a little bit and adjust to the humidity.''

Quarterback Kyle Boller will face a similar task Monday during his first full-contract practice. Boller, the 19th overall pick, signed a five-year contract Thursday but not in time to practice with the team.

The contract calls for $5 million in guaranteed bonuses and could pay as much as $20 million if escalators and incentives are met.

Boller will miss Friday night's scrimmage, as will Suggs, according to Ravens coach Brian Billick, who kept Suggs out of all full-contact drills for now.

''I didn't want to put him or his teammates in jeopardy,'' Billick said. ''He's got a lot of physical things to do before we put him on the field in a true competitive atmosphere. His first real contact will be Monday morning.''

Panthers

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) Wide receiver Steve Smith is expected to miss at least two weeks of practice with the Carolina Panthers because of a pulled hamstring.

''Our training staff doesn't think it's real serious, but he will miss some time,'' Coach John Fox said Thursday of Smith, who had 54 receptions for 872 yards and three touchdowns last season. ''With these things it's always kind of day to day.''

Fourteen-year veteran Ricky Proehl, Terrence Wilkins and rookie Walter Young will share Smith's position. Muhsin Muhammad is the team's other starting receiver.

Reserve offensive tackle Melvin Tuten will miss the entire season after tearing ligaments in his left knee.

Tuten started seven games for the Panthers last season. The Panthers drafted Jordan Gross in the first round to play right tackle, but the team still viewed Tuten as a valuable backup.

Giants

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) In a season where much is expected of the New York Giants' offense, the biggest question mark could be quarterback Jesse Palmer, who might not get on the field.

If all goes right, Kerry Collins will stay healthy and Palmer will get a third year to learn the offense and develop as an NFL quarterback. If Collins gets hurt and his string of starting 54 straight starts comes to an end, Palmer will be on the spot.

In his first three seasons, the former Florida quarterback has thrown just four passes, hitting three for 30 yards. All four came in a game against Dallas last season.

''I'm beginning to understand the offense, so I am a lot more confident,'' Palmer said Thursday during a training camp break at the University at Albany. ''I feel a lot better with my decision making, making the right kinds of throws.''

Coach Jim Fassel plans to give Palmer a lot of playing time in scrimmages and preseason games.

''It's going to be a big year for Jesse,'' Fassel said. ''Hopefully, he won't have to play for us to find out about him in the regular season. Hopefully, we'll find out enough about him in the preseason.''

Lions

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) Earl Holmes is not just the Detroit Lions' new starting middle linebacker.

He comes with the mayor's seal of approval.

That's because he played football with Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick at Florida A&M.

''I called him 'Slash,''' Holmes said. ''If the guy were given an opportunity to play in this league, he would have made it. He was good, not because he's the mayor, not because he's my ex-teammate, but really, the guy was good. He could play.''

The same can be said for Holmes, who has led his team in tackles the last four seasons first Pittsburgh and then Cleveland.

''He was a good acquisition at linebacker, because we didn't have enough linebackers, capable linebackers, before the draft so we drafted two and acquired two more, Wali Rainer and Earl,'' coach Steve Mariucci said.

Browns

BEREA, Ohio (AP) Defensive back Chris Crocker agreed Thursday to a five-year deal with the Cleveland Browns, who will give him a chance to move into a starting position on the team's weak secondary.

The agreement means the Browns have four of their seven draft choices signed, including their top three picks, after going a week without having any of them at training camp.

Third-round choice Crocker played both cornerback and safety as a three-year starter at Marshall. The Browns need help in the secondary after releasing Corey Fuller in the offseason.

Crocker signed about 18 hours after the Browns reached agreement with linebacker Chaun Thompson, a second-round choice who reported to training camp Thursday.

Dolphins

DAVIE, Fla. (AP) Miami Dolphins receiver Oronde Gadsden could miss several weeks of training camp because of a sprained left ankle but will not need surgery.

''It's not really day to day,'' coach Dave Wannstedt said Thursday. ''It's more like week to week.''

Tests ruled out a break and Gadsden will be re-evaluated. He was carted off the practice field Wednesday and was in a cast the next day.

Gadsden played only six games last season because of a torn ligament in his left wrist. But he caught 56 passes in 2000 and 55 in 2001.



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