The St Louis Rams made their first move of free agency by signing the centre Jason Brown to a five-year deal. Financial terms were not disclosed but media reports suggest it was worth US$37.5 million (Dh137.7m). Brown, 25, started every game this past season for the Baltimore Ravens - his first season at centre. The 6ft 3in player had started at left guard in the previous two seasons for Baltimore.
"We stressed, even when the season was going on, about getting bigger on the offensive line and being more physical," the Rams general manager Billy Devaney said. "He fits everything. He's extremely smart, 25 years old, all of those things. "He's a strong character guy. In scouts' lingo, the arrow is still going up on him; he's still an ascending player so that to us, there are a lot of good traits about him."
A fourth-round pick of Baltimore in 2005, Brown was considered one of the top offensive linemen available in free agency. Brown acknowledged he would have preferred to remain with the Ravens, who advanced to the AFC championship game last season. Meanwhile, the free safety Brian Dawkins signed a five-year deal with the Denver Broncos on Saturday to end a 13-year spell with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Dawkins, 35, made the Pro Bowl seven times with the Eagles, who selected him in the second round of the 1996 draft. "I've been blessed to play for a great organisation and to come to another great organisation," Dawkins said. "I was able to meet some of the young guys I'll have the privilege of playing with. I'm jumping around with because I'm so excited." * With agencies