Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Bengals could use Norwood's Edwards


Ex-Patriots fullback now a free agent

By Mark Curnutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

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Mark Edwards
Stats

The name of former Norwood prep star Marc Edwards has surfaced since the Bengals lost their second fullback, Nicolas Luchey, in free agency over the weekend.

Bengals coach Marvin Lewis would not confirm or deny the team's possible interest in Edwards, a six-year veteran who has spent two seasons each in San Francisco, Cleveland and New England.

The Bengals are believed to have made a call to his agents earlier in free agency.

Edwards, 28, who lives in Columbus, referred questions to his agent, Ken Kremer.

Kremer did not return phone messages.

The 6-foot, 245-pound Edwards has played in 95 NFL games and seven more in the postseason, including Super Bowl XXXVI with the Patriots. He rushed for 96 yards and had 196 receiving yards in 2002.

Edwards had a $730,000 salary-cap number last season in New England, and he rejected an offer the team made in October.

Now he is a free agent.

There is a chance Edwards could re-sign with the Patriots. They have yet to sign a replacement fullback.

Neither have the Bengals, who lost Luchey (Packers) and starter Lorenzo Neal (Chargers).

Although the Bengals have signed four potential free agent defensive starters - linemen Carl Powell and John Thornton, linebacker Kevin Hardy and cornerback Tory James - they apparently have plenty of room remaining under the salary cap.

ESPN.com reported new league-wide figures Tuesday that show the Bengals to be $8.1 million under the cap - the 10th most room in the NFL. Other estimates have the Bengals $5 million-$6 million under. The cap is estimated to be $75.1 million in 2003.

The Bengals might be looking at another fullback, 270-pound James Hodgins, a free agent who has played three seasons in St. Louis.

Green Bay has made an offer to Bengals restricted free agent linebacker Armegis Spearman. Former Bengals assistant Mark Duffner is Packers linebackers coach.

E-mail mcurnutte@enquirer.com




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