Sun Jul 31 09:31am EDT
Former Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants receiver Plaxico Burress(notes) will return to the Big Apple after spending two seasons out of football. After a whirlwind free-agency tour, Burress and agent Drew Rosenhaus have agreed to terms with the New York Jets on a one-year, $3.017 million deal. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the deal is fully guaranteed. Reports indicate that the extra $17,000 in the total was a small vanity point, as Burress' jersey number was (and is) No. 17.
And as has been before, it appears that Rex Ryan was a major drawing card.
"I know they have a good team and everybody knows Rex," Burress said of the Jets' head coach Saturday. "I think he's great. He stands behind his players, I think his players have a lot of respect for him and they play hard for him. … He's a great coach, great personality. He seems like he's always upbeat."
Burress served almost two years in prison after pleading guilty to attempted criminal possession of a weapon. In November of 2008, Burress accidentally shot himself in the thigh when a weapon he was holding in his sweatpants discharged in a New York nightclub, and that started a downward spiral that now has him as an interesting NFL comeback story. The recent rehabilitation story of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick(notes) makes Burress a more palatable option to a lot of teams, and there was talk at one point that Burress -- a big, tough receiver with the ability to get vertical in the end zone -- would be a great option for the Eagles.
This time, the Jets won out. GM Mike Tannenbaum re-signed receiver Santonio Holmes(notes), but didn't appear interested in doing the same with Braylon Edwards(notes). And after losing out to the Eagles in the Nnamdi Asomugha(notes) sweepstakes, the Jets had more than enough money under the cap to make this deal an easy one.
Burress had visited with the Jets on Saturday and was expected to fly to San Francisco on Sunday to visit with the 49ers, but that never happened. He had previously visited with the Steelers and Giants, his two former teams.
In 2008, his last NFL season, Burress started nine games for the Giants. He caught 35 passes for 454 yards and four touchdowns. He caught 70 passes for 1,025 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2007, and the Giants ended that season by upsetting the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII.
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