US: Several NFL stars released from their teams
Friday, March 2, 2007
Several players in the National Football League are packing their bags. Topping the list is Steelers linebacker Joey Porter. Porter was considering holding out of training camp for a new deal, and the Steelers needed breathing room to fit under the salary cap. Porter, called the "Most Feared Player in the NFL" by Sports Illustrated last fall, had a disappointing 2006 campaign, with only seven sacks.
The New Orleans Saints released Joe Horn by his own request. Horn was a fan favorite, standing up for the city when the team was forced to evacuate following Hurricane Katrina. Horn is also known for infamously pulling a cell phone out of a goal post in a post-touchdown celebration.
As expected, the Dallas Cowboys cut quarterback Drew Bledsoe, although Cowboys owner Jerry Jones did not rule out Bledsoe returning at a lower salary, stating: "I spoke with Drew today and told him that this was primarily a cap decision and that the door was very much open for him being a part of our future." Bledsoe, a former first pick in the draft, was pushed out of his job by Tony Romo after a terrible first half in 2006.
The San Francisco 49ers released wide receiver Antonio Bryant, after Bryant had several clashes with the law, as well as 49ers head coach Mike Nolan. Bryant lead San Francisco with 40 receptions for 733 yards. Bryant's short career with the 49ers ended in a four-game suspension to end the season.
San Diego Chargers wide receiver Keenan McCardell was among those released Thursday. The 37 year old receiver had 36 catches for the Chargers last year, his 15th NFL season. The Chargers also released safety Terrance Kiel and linebacker Steve Foley. Kiel had pleaded guilty last month to felony and misdemeanor drug charges. Foley had been shot this past year by a police officer.
- Mike Alstott, who considered retirement, resigned with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
- Jerrico Cotchery signed a long-term contract with the New York Jets.
- The Jacksonville Jaguars signed running back Fred Taylor through 2010.
- NFL Wire Reports. "Cowboys release QB Bledsoe, two others" — , March 1, 2007
- NFL Wire Reports. "Steelers release LB Porter" — , March 1, 2007
- Barry Wilner (AP). "Bledsoe, Horn, Porter let go in pre-free agency cuts" — , March 2, 2007