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Hawks create cap space, cut Simmons, Robinson

Associated Press

The Seattle Seahawks cleared some salary cap room on Friday by releasing often-injured linebacker Anthony Simmons and safety Damien Robinson.

Simmons played in just six games last season for Seattle. He missed two games in October following shoulder surgery to remove bone spurs, then underwent season-ending surgery to repair a broken left wrist following Seattle’s 23-12 loss at St. Louis on Nov. 14.

Simmons has not played a full season since 2001. He was Seattle’s first-round pick, 15th overall, in the 1998 draft.

Simmons signed a five-year, $23.5 million deal with Seattle two years ago. He was scheduled to make $3.25 million in 2005, and was due a roster bonus Monday of $500,000.

Robinson signed as a free agent with Seattle before the 2003 season. He played in 15 games, starting four, but missed the entire 2004 campaign with a shoulder injury. Robinson was to make $800,000 next season and was also due a roster bonus of $200,000.

Brees signs $8 million contract

Drew Brees was in an $8 million mood.

The quarterback signed a one-year contract that more than quadruples his pay from last year, when he came off the scrap heap to lead the San Diego Chargers back to the playoffs for the first time in nine seasons.

The Chargers put the “franchise” tag on Brees on Feb. 17, meaning he’ll get $8,078,000 next year, or the average of the NFL’s five highest-paid quarterbacks in 2004.

Giants bring in McKenzie

The New York Giants signed offensive tackle Kareem McKenzie to beef up a woeful offensive line.

McKenzie, the New York Jets’ right tackle for the last three seasons, was considered one of the top two offensive tackles on the market.

McKenzie will receive $37.75 million over seven years, with a $12.5 million signing bonus.

Bills sign Holcomb

Former Cleveland Browns quarterback Kelly Holcomb agreed to a four-year deal with the Buffalo Bills to serve as J.P. Losman’s backup.

The Bills also signed free agent Mike Gandy to help bolster its offensive line.

Jets replace Jordan with Blaylock

The New York Jets didn’t need long to replace their backup running back, agreeing Thursday to a contract with Derrick Blaylock hours after losing LaMont Jordan to Oakland.

Blaylock signed the five-year deal Friday, and he will serve as Curtis Martin’s backup. Martin led the NFL in rushing last year at age 31; Blaylock is 25.

Blaylock leaves Kansas City for an $11 million contract, including a $3.2 million signing bonus.

The Jets also signed defensive lineman Lance Legree.

In addition, New York signed Denver tight end Jeb Putzier to a five-year offer sheet. The Broncos have seven days to match the offer to the restricted free agent.

And the Jets hired former NFL fullback Sam Gash as assistant running backs and special teams coach and re-signed tackle Alan Harper.

Around the league

Cornerback Gary Baxter signed a six-year contract with Cleveland. The Browns also signed punter Kyle Richardson. … Quarterback Kurt Warner was in Chicago talking to the Bears. The former Super Bowl MVP is visiting with three teams – Detroit and Arizona are the others. … Miami signed free-agent safety Travares Tillman to help rebuild its depleted secondary. … The Tampa Bay Buccaneers re-signed veteran free agent tight end Dave Moore. He will return for his 12th season with the Buccaneers. He also serves as the team’s long snapper. … The Arizona Cardinals re-signed running back Damien Anderson and released running back Larry Ned. … The Philadelphia Eagles re-signed Pro Bowl middle linebacker Jeremiah Trotter. … Tackle Oliver Ross signed a five-year contract with the Arizona Cardinals. The 6-foot-5, 322-pound lineman started all 16 games and both of Pittsburgh’s playoff games last season.

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