American Football - Urlacher's time with Bears comes to an end

Brian Urlacher's days as the face of the Chicago Bears franchise have ended after the linebacker and club parted ways.

Reuters
American Football - Bears linebacker Urlacher retires after 13 seasons
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Chicago Bears middle linebacker Brian Urlacher

The Bears issued a statement to announce negotiations with the unrestricted free agent weren't fruitful, seemingly closing the book on Urlacher's 13-year run with the Bears.

"We were unable to reach an agreement with Brian and both sides have decided to move forward," Bears general manager Phil Emery said.

"Brian has been an elite player in our league for over a decade. He showed great leadership and helped develop a winning culture over his time with the Bears.

"We appreciate all he has given our team, on and off the field. Brian will always be welcome as a member of the Bears."

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Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said at the NFL Annual Meeting in Phoenix that the team is nearing agreement on a contract extension with quarterback Tony Romo.

"We all have to decide what that day is, everybody involved - his agents, him, me," Jones said, according to USA Today.

"It's not a concern of mine."

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The Washington Redskins aren't counting on quarterback Robert Griffin III being ready for the season opener.

Coach Mike Shanahan said the team isn't pushing Griffin to rush back from surgery to repair torn knee ligaments.

The Redskins will prepare second-year quarterback Kirk Cousins by giving him all the first-team reps in the off season and into training camp.

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Greg Jennings expressed his thanks to Green Bay Packers fans in a full-page ad Wednesday in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The longtime Packers wide receiver signed a five-year, $47.5 million contract with the rival Minnesota Vikings last week.

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New York Jets coach Rex Ryan is going back to calling plays for the defense next season.

Ryan was in charge of calling signals when he joined the Jets in 2009 but handed off those duties to Mike Pettine, who left after the 2012 season for the Buffalo Bills.

But with new defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman coming on board, Ryan wants to have more input again in the direction of the defense.

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The Redskins signed free agent cornerback E.J. Biggers and Oakland re-signed offensive lineman Khalif Barnes.

The Chicago Bears signed defensive end Turk McBride to a one-year contract while long snapper Thomas Gafford signed with the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Buccaneers re-signed two unrestricted free agents, left safety Andrew Economos and linebacker Jacob Cutrera. The New England Patriots also re-signed two unrestricted free agents, cornerback Marquice Cole and linebacker Niko Koutouvides.

The Indianapolis Colts signed unrestricted free agent defensive tackle Aubrayo Franklin and said guard Joe Reitz signed the tender offered by the team.

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