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Friday's top NFL personnel moves
A look at five of Friday’s biggest NFL personnel developments:
• Philadelphia wins the Nnamdi Asomugha sweepstakes: Let it never be said that Eagles brass won't make bold moves. As first reported by FOXSports.com NFL insider Jay Glazer, Asomugha was signed to a five-year, $60 million contract with $25 million guaranteed. This ranks with other blockbuster Eagles deals such as acquiring Terrell Owens in 2004 and gambling on a then-disgraced Michael Vick in 2009. The Eagles quietly outmaneuvered two perceived frontrunners (Dallas and the New York Jets) to land one of the game's premier shutdown cornerbacks. Look for the Eagles to play more press coverage with Asomugha and fellow newcomer Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who was acquired from Arizona as part of the Kevin Kolb trade.
• Carolina signs Cam Newton: A banner week for the Panthers was capped by the draft’s No. 1 overall pick reporting for training camp with a four-year, $22 million rookie contract. Carolina has done a nice job securing talent to surround the newbie. Running back DeAngelo Williams was re-signed, wide receiver Steve Smith won't be traded and Greg Olsen will be joining Jeremy Shockey at tight end after a trade with Chicago.
• Miami gets a quarterback — but not Kyle Orton: When the Dolphins couldn't complete a trade with Denver, they signed Matt Moore from Carolina. The four-year NFL veteran will serve as the backup to Chad Henne, who is the de facto starter unless the Dolphins can salvage a better option. Orton, who collected a $1.5 million roster bonus Friday from Denver, still may not figure into the Broncos’ 2011 plans with Tim Tebow in the fold. But unless the Broncos receive what they consider adequate compensation and Orton agrees to a contract extension with his new team, Denver seems set for a Western-style preseason quarterback showdown.
• Chad Ochocinco makes his practice debut in New England: Asked about the possibility of an Ochocinco-Bill Belichick pairing in January, Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis told the Boston Herald that the Patriots coach wouldn't have interest because he’s “smarter than that.” Ochocinco now has the chance to prove Lewis and the Bengals a fool. He already began building chemistry with Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in Friday afternoon's session after a trade with the Bengals was finalized.
• Four big-name players don’t report for camp: New York Giants defensive end Osi Umenyiora, Philadelphia wide receiver DeSean Jackson, and running backs Chris Johnson (Tennessee) and Frank Gore (San Francisco) are angling for new contracts. New York’s re-signing of Mathias Kiwinuka could lead to a Umenyiora trade. Johnson and Jackson have the most legitimate gripes for new deals, having outplayed their rookie contracts. Gore is set to earn $4.9 million in 2011.
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