Graham Signs Record Deal – NFL Roundup
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The New Orleans Saints and tight end Jimmy Graham have resolved their differences. The club has confirmed that the two sides have agreed to a multiyear contract.
Graham skipped all of the Saints' voluntary and mandatory practices and workouts, and challenged the NFL's franchise tag process through arbitration. The NFL Players Association filed a grievance, contending Graham was used as a wide receiver often enough to qualify for the more lucrative receiver tag, worth about $5 million a year more than the $7 million tag for a tight end.
UNDATED (AP) — The Dallas Cowboys are releasing Kyle Orton after their backup quarterback missed all the offseason workouts amid reports he was considering retirement.
The 31-year-old Orton started the finale last year after Tony Romo injured his back a week earlier. The Cowboys lost to Philadelphia, their third straight season-ending defeat against an NFC East rival with a playoff berth on the line.
The new backup is likely to be Brandon Weeden, Cleveland's first-round draft pick in 2012.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Panthers Pro Bowl defensive end Greg Hardy has been sentenced to 18 months' probation after being found guilty of assaulting a woman and communicating threats. A 60-day jail sentence was suspended.
Hardy's attorney says he'll appeal, and Hardy has asked for a jury trial in superior court. In North Carolina, that means the terms of Hardy's probation are on hold until the trial — so he's free to travel with the team to training camp and compete in games.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The attorney for former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe (KLOO'-ee) says his client intends to sue the team over allegations of anti-gay conduct by a coach. Lawyer Clayton Halunen (HAL'-oo-nehn) said they'll seek a copy of the Vikings' internal investigation and make it public if they can. They accused the Vikings of reneging on a pledge to release the report, which they believe corroborates Kluwe's claims.
The Vikings hired two outside lawyers to examine Kluwe's claims that special teams coordinator Mike Priefer (PREE'-fur) used slurs and taunts to try to quash Kluwe's outspoken support for gay marriage. Priefer denied the allegations.