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Gonzalez Signs Seven-Year Deal

September 14, 2002|From Associated Press

Kansas City Chief tight end Tony Gonzalez has agreed to a seven-year deal worth more than $31 million, along with a $10-million signing bonus that is the most any NFL tight end has received.

The bonus, to be paid out over at least three years, is the most the team has given to any player.

"I can confirm that this is the largest signing/option bonus in the history of the Kansas City Chiefs," General Manager Carl Peterson said Friday. "I don't have a problem paying players who have been productive on and off the field."

The deal is voidable after five years, but Gonzalez said that he hopes to finish his NFL career in the same city where it began five years ago.

"I'm very happy today to get this thing done," Gonzalez said.

"It's great to be in Kansas City and to know that I'm going to be here for at least the next five years."

The deal also allows Gonzalez, who played college basketball at California, to pursue his dream of playing in the NBA. But if Gonzalez is injured playing basketball, the new contract calls for a pro-rated repayment of his option bonus.

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Kelly Holcomb, who threw three touchdown passes in the Cleveland Browns' season-opening loss while filling in for the injured Tim Couch, will start this week against the Cincinnati Bengals.

On Monday, though, Couch, who has torn scar tissue in his right elbow, will be installed as the starter for the following week's game at Tennessee.

Brown Coach Butch Davis also said defensive end Courtney Brown might not play Sunday because of a neck injury

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The Dallas Cowboys cut veteran cornerback Bryant Westbrook, days after he committed costly penalties in the team's embarrassing 19-10 loss to Houston.

The Cowboys said Westbrook, who at one point was yanked off the field so coaches could talk to him, had lost confidence.

"We've been hanging in there with him," Cowboy vice president Stephen Jones said on the team's Web site. "It's not like we didn't have a lot of patience. And then he had a tough week of practice too."

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Tennessee Titan linebacker Randall Godfrey said his chances of playing against the Cowboys on Sunday are "very slim."

Godfrey sprained his ankle in last week's victory against the Philadelphia Eagles. He played four seasons in Dallas before signing with Tennessee in 2000.

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Denver Bronco safety Kenoy Kennedy plans to appeal the $7,500 fine from the league for his hit on St. Louis receiver Isaac Bruce last Sunday.

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