Former Hawaii WR Bess goes to Browns; Pack’s Rodgers rich
By TOM WITHERS
AP Sports Writer
BEREA, Ohio — Rumored for days leading up to the NFL draft, the Browns finally pulled off a trade to acquire veteran wide receiver Davone Bess from the Miami Dolphins.
Shortly after picking San Diego State cornerback Leon McFadden in the third round Friday night, Browns general manager Michael Lombardi said the Bess deal was done, pending the veteran passing a physical on Saturday. Lombardi said the team has also discussed signing Bess to a three-year contract extension.
To get Bess, the Browns traded their fourth-round pick (No. 104) and fifth-round pick (No. 164) to the Dolphins for Miami’s fourth-round pick (No. 111) and a seventh-rounder (No. 217).
Bess spent five seasons with Miami, catching at least 50 passes each season. He had 61 receptions for 778 yards and one touchdown in 13 games last season. But he didn’t fit into the Dolphins’ long-term plans and became expendable when Miami acquired Mike Wallace and Brandon Gibson this offseason.
“Davone was a consummate professional on the field and a model representative of the team off it through all of his charitable activities,” Dolphins general manager Jeff Ireland said. “He joined the Dolphins as an undrafted free agent and worked hard to become one of the team’s most popular and respected players. We want to wish him the best of luck with the Browns.”
In 2010, Bess set career highs in receptions (79), yards (820) and touchdowns (5).
Bess will give the Browns quality depth at a troublesome position the past few seasons. Bess can help mentor young receivers Josh Gordon and Greg Little, and he will likely compete to be Cleveland’s third receiver with David Nelson, who was recently signed as a free agent.
The Browns did not have a second-round pick this year, forfeiting it when they selected Gordon in the second round of last summer’s supplemental draft.
Rodgers gets mega-deal
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Aaron Rodgers will be sticking around Green Bay for a few more years.
The Green Bay Packers announced Friday that they’d signed the quarterback to a contract extension. Though the team didn’t release details, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported it’s for five years and $110 million, which would be the highest salary in NFL history. The Baltimore Ravens gave quarterback Joe Flacco $120.6 million over six years in March.
“An exciting day for our football program,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said in a statement. “Aaron is an excellent illustration of a Green Bay Packer. It is truly a blessing to witness his continued accomplishments, both on and off the field.”
Rodgers was to address the media later Friday at Lambeau Field.
Locking up Rodgers was a priority for the Packers, who also reached a long-term extension with linebacker Clay Matthews this month. The Packers are 53-27 in Rodgers’ five years as a starter, and he led them to the Super Bowl title following the 2010 season.
He has thrown for 21,661 yards and 171 touchdowns, and has had a quarterback rating of 101.2 or better in all but one season as a starter. His quarterback rating of 122.5 in 2011 is an NFL record.
“Aaron is a true professional and a special player,” general manger Ted Thompson said in a statement. “He works hard, is humble, and is focused on his actions, on and off the field. He is an excellent teammate and pushes himself and others to be the very best. We are happy to reach an agreement to extend his career with the Packers.”
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