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GROSSMAN HAS DEAL BUT NOT STARTING JOB

Quarterback Rex Grossman signed a one-year contract with the Bears on Saturday and will compete for the starting job.

The 2003 first-round pick out of Florida started the Super Bowl for Chicago after an up-and-down 2006. He struggled again last season and was benched after the third game. He returned for five before injuring his left knee in December. He finished with 1,411 yards, four touchdowns and seven interceptions.

"Rex has won a lot of football games for us around here," coach Lovie Smith said. "You look at how he played at the end of the football season until he came up with that injury, he was playing good football."

Grossman will compete with Kyle Orton, former Buc Brian Griese and anyone drafted or signed via free agency.

"I don't want to say it's tricky," general manager Jerry Angelo said. "But you're going to have to have a real plan in place to be fair with everybody and to make sure that you're making the right decision. Because once we make that decision, we're going ... to stay with it."

Eagles likely to cut Kearse, agent believes

INDIANAPOLIS - Jevon Kearse's agent said he expects the Eagles to release the defensive end. In his ninth season, fourth for Philadelphia, the former Gator had 31/2 sacks but only 12 tackles. "We tried to work out a restructured (contract), and it didn't work out," agent Drew Rosenhaus said at the combine. "He had a wonderful career there."

Chargers: Pro Bowl tight end Antonio Gates is scheduled for surgery this week on a foot injury that limited him late last season. He is expected to be ready for the regular season and possibly by training camp.

Cowboys: Longtime Dolphins linebacker Zach Thomas agreed to a one-year, $3-million contract. After a standout career at Texas Tech, Thomas, 34, made seven Pro Bowls in 12 seasons for Miami. But he missed most of last season because of concussions and migraines and was released on Feb. 14. Thomas also talked with the Patriots and Saints. The three offered similar deals, but Thomas said he wanted to play in Texas.

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