Archive for Sunday, July 30, 2006

Bush, Saints agree on six-year contract

July 30, 2006

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Reggie Bush agreed to a six-year deal with the New Orleans Saints on Saturday night, and the Heisman Trophy winner will report to training camp today, The Associated Press has learned.

A source with direct knowledge of the negotiations said the deal had been agreed to, but that he couldn't disclose financial terms.

Reached by phone at his home in New York, Bush's agent, Joel Segal, said he wouldn't comment until a deal had been signed. However, he said he was traveling to Jackson, Miss., today to meet with Bush and the Saints.

Bush, the Saints' only unsigned player, has missed the team's first three practices of training camp.

The former Southern California running back was selected second overall, between No. 1 Mario Williams and No. 3 Vince Young.

Williams signed a six-year, $54 million contract with Houston, with $26.5 million guaranteed. Young agreed to a five-year deal with Tennessee, with an option for a sixth, with $25.7 million guaranteed and an overall value that could reach $58 million with option and roster bonuses and salary.

The 6-foot, 200-pound Bush had 1,740 yards rushing and 2,890 all-purpose yards for Southern Cal last season as a junior.

Bush averaged 8.9 yards a carry, caught 37 passes for 478 yards and led the nation in all-purpose yards with 222.3 per game.

Meanwhile, Terrell Owens, Keyshawn Johnson and Daunte Culpepper made their training-camp debuts with their new teams, while Ben Roethlisberger and Braylon Edwards were back on the field after recovering from injuries.

In his first camp with the Dallas Cowboys, Owens started out by being fashionably late as the last one out of the locker room Saturday.

Two hours later, he gave the fans what they came to see. Using his size and speed, he ran past cornerback Aaron Glenn, snatched a long pass and raced into the end zone for a touchdown.

A chant of "T.O." started immediately and grew louder at the urging of another newcomer, kicker Mike Vanderjagt. Then Owens made his way back to midfield waving his arms to keep the cheer going.

If there was still any doubt whether Cowboys fans would embrace Owens, it ended right there.

"They're excited for me to be here and I'm equally excited for me to be here," Owens said.

Johnson, released by the Cowboys after they signed Owens, warned his new Carolina Panthers teammates all about lofty preaseason expectations.

"If you get caught worrying about it, you aren't going anywhere," Johnson said of predictions of a Super Bowl win for Carolina. "I can remember when I was in Tampa, every single year we were picked to win it all and we were always at home at the end of the day. You don't win anything right now. I want to be picked on Super Bowl day."

Culpepper, the Miami Dolphins' new quarterback, took the field nine months after a right knee injury ended his last season in Minnesota. Throwing against the wind generated by huge air condition vents, he threw a pass 50 yards in the air, catching receiver Chris Chambers in stride along the sideline.

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