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Ogden Gets $44 Million for Six Years

Times Wire Services

The Baltimore Ravens and left tackle Jonathan Ogden reached terms Tuesday on six-year contract extension that will make the three-time all-pro from UCLA the highest paid offensive lineman in NFL history.

Ogden will get $44 million over six years, including a $12-million signing bonus, the team announced.

Ogden, 26, would have become a free agent next March.

His contract surpasses those of tackles Jon Runyan and Willie Anderson. Runyan signed with the Philadelphia Eagles last winter for $30.5 million over six years with a $6-million signing bonus. Anderson got a six-year extension worth $30.6 million from the Cincinnati Bengals.

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The New York Jets cut kick returner Dwight Stone, clearing the way for rookie receiver Laveranues Coles to pair with cornerback Aaron Glenn on the kickoff return team.

The Jets also cut long snapper John Hudson and replaced him with Brad Banta, who was waived Sunday by Indianapolis.

Stone, 36, was second in the AFC last season to Cincinnati’s Tremain Mack with a 24.6-yard average on 28 kickoff returns. He had 152 catches during his first eight years with Pittsburgh from 1987-94, but had just two receptions over the past five seasons with the Carolina Panthers and the Jets.

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The Cleveland Browns released veteran running back Terry Kirby and signed rookie running back Jamel White off waivers from the Indianapolis Colts. Kirby, 30 and about to start his eighth NFL season, played in all 16 games for the expansion Browns last year, gaining 452 yards in 130 carries.

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Wide receiver Isaac Byrd, waived by Tennessee earlier in the day, was claimed by Carolina. Byrd started for the Titans in the Super Bowl and caught two passes for 21 yards.

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The Panthers will assume the final year of Byrd’s contract, which pays him $472,000 this season.

Carolina had searched for an experienced receiver since Patrick Jeffers was lost for the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament. His replacement, Jim Turner, also tore his ACL and was lost for the year.

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The Detroit Lions signed free-agent running back Mario Bates and released running back Ken Oxendine. Bates spent the past two seasons with Arizona before being waived on Friday. He scored a team-high nine touchdowns last season but rushed for only 202 yards.

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Bates is suspended for the season opener after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor assault/domestic violence charge. He’ll join the Lions at practice on Monday.

Oxendine was claimed off waivers on Aug. 22 after leading Atlanta in rushing last season with 452 yards in place of injured Jamal Anderson.

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Indianapolis defensive back Mustafah Muhammad, cleared earlier this year of any responsibility in the death of his wife, goes on trial today on charges that he beat her.

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Nichole Muhammad, who was five months pregnant, went into premature labor three days after she was injured in a car accident. She died from excessive bleeding, not from injuries she might have received from her husband, a coroner ruled at the time. However, Marion County Prosecutor Scott Newman decided to pursue the misdemeanor battery charges.

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The Cleveland Browns, who have been seeking a veteran quarterback to be Tim Couch’s backup, have been unsuccessful in trying to sign Doug Pederson, who was released by Philadelphia on Sunday. Pederson said he wants to spend some time with his family. . . . Jacksonville released center David Kempfert and replaced him by signing former Kansas City lineman Jeff Smith off waivers. . . . A day after announcing that Kent Graham would be the Pittsburgh Steelers’ starting quarterback, Coach Bill Cowher refused to elaborate on Kordell Stewart’s role. Stewart, who started 11 games at quarterback last season, is expected to be used at wide receiver and running back in the Steelers’ opener against Baltimore on Sunday.


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