TAMPA — Rather than play the restricted free agent game, the Bucs have signed running back LeGarrette Blount to a one-year, $1.75 million contract. There are no guarantees within the contract, suggesting Blount still will have to earn a spot, though one report said the Bucs are looking to trade him.
The contract includes a base salary of $1.25 million, according to NFL players union data. According to nationalfootballpost.com, it also contains a $350,000 reporting bonus and a workout bonus of $150,000.
Blount, 26, was awaiting a decision from the team on a restricted free agent tender that would have given the club the right to match any competing contract offer, but the team kept Blount with a deal that will cost less than the first- and second-round tender levels. Those tenders — at $2.879 million and $2.023 million, respectively — would have given the club draft-pick protection in the event another team signed him.
Knowing that possibility was remote, the Bucs made the deal to keep a player who gives them depth behind starting running back Doug Martin.
Blount played sparingly last season, carrying 41 times for 151 yards — both career lows —perhaps making him expendable. To that end, cbssports.com reported the team is shopping Blount in a possible trade.
Around the league: Steelers cut Harrison
PITTSBURGH — James Harrison's snarling tenacity made the Steelers linebacker one of the league's most intimidating players for nearly a decade and a five-time Pro Bowl pick.
But his contract no longer worked for a team with serious salary cap issues, so Pittsburgh released the 2008 defensive player of the year on Saturday.
"It's been a great run but all good things must come to a end," Harrison, 34, posted on his Twitter account Saturday. "Thank you Steelers Nation I will miss you all!"
Harrison was entering the final two years of a $51 million extension he signed in 2009. Profootballtalk.com reported that the team offered a 30 percent cut in his $6.57 million salary in 2013, with a chance to earn it back in incentives.
The Steelers are trying to get under the $123 million salary cap by Tuesday, when the new league year begins.
Bills: Cornerback Leodis McKelvin agreed to resign on a four-year contract worth a little over $20 million, the Associated Press reported.
Cardinals: They released wide receiver Early Doucet and gave a qualifying, second-round tender offer to quarterback Brian Hoyer.
Falcons: Strong safety William Moore agreed to re-sign with a five-year contract worth a guaranteed $14 million. The maximum value is $32 million.
Ravens: The Super Bowl champions could release receiver and former Florida State star Anquan Boldin by Tuesday if they can't rework his contract, the Baltimore Sun reported.
Redskins: Fullback Darrel Young and tight end Logan Paulsen agreed to three-year contracts to remain.
Obituary: George Saimes, a five-time Pro Bowl safety in the AFL and a member of the Bills' Wall of Fame, died Friday in his hometown of Canton, Ohio, after a battle with leukemia, his daughter said. He was 71 and a former scout for the Bucs (1982-83).
Information from Times wires was used in this report.