Thursday’s NFL: Washington, Smith formalize 4-year deal

Associated Press

Washington has the continuity at quarterback they’ve wanted by signing Alex Smith to a four-year contract extension.

Smith was already signed at a salary-cap hit of $17 million for next season. His new agreement agreed to in January and signed Thursday that’s worth $94 million with $71 million guaranteed means he’s under contract through 2022.

The former Kansas City Chiefs quarterback turns 34 in May and will be entering his 13th NFL season. Smith replaces former Michigan State star Kirk Cousins as the Redskins’ starting quarterback after that relationship ended following six turbulent years.

Smith got the long-term commitment from Washington that Cousins never received and seemingly didn’t want the past two years.

Meantime in Minnesota, the Vikings finalized a three-year contract with Cousins, securing their latest franchise quarterback to try to fetch that elusive first Super Bowl victory.

The Vikings announced on Thursday afternoon that the deal was done, after Cousins arrived to tour their new suburban headquarters. Cousins is reportedly getting an $84 million contract that’s fully guaranteed.

“He was a guy that always had to prove himself,” coach Mike Zimmer said. “He’s a lot like a lot of people on our football team.”

Taylor no ‘bridge’ QB

Acquired last week in a trade with Buffalo, Tyrod Taylor was introduced on Thursday by the Cleveland Browns and was asked if he minded being a “bridge” quarterback while the team grooms a young QB to be selected in this year’s NFL draft.

“I’m a quarterback,” said Taylor, who helped the Bills end a long playoff drought last season. “As far as a bridge, hopefully I’m helping bridge this team to a Super Bowl. That’s the plan.”

Browns coach Hue Jackson said Taylor is the team’s starter and there is “no competition” for the job.

Dolphins dealings

The Miami Dolphins acquired center Daniel Kilgore in a trade Thursday with San Francisco, and released three-time Pro Bowl center Mike Pouncey, which clears $7 million in cap space.

The trade was part of a makeover in the interior of the offensive line. Four-time Pro Bowl guard Josh Sitton agreed to terms with Miami on a two-year deal that could be worth nearly $18 million including incentives, said his agent.

The Dolphins also signed former New England Patriots receiver Danny Amendola and re-signed long snapper John Denney, who has been with the team since 2005 and turns 40 in December.

Nelson joins Raiders

The Oakland Raiders are shuffling wide receivers, signing free agent Jordy Nelson and releasing Michael Crabtree.

A person familiar with the move says Nelson agreed to a two-year contract Thursday after the Raiders spent more than a day meeting with the former Green Bay Packers star. Oakland is also cutting ties with Crabtree after three seasons, leaving Nelson and Amari Cooper as the team’s starters.

Extra points

Free agent defensive tackle Beau Allen signed a three-year, $15 million contract with the Buccaneers, saying he has no qualms about leaving the reigning NFL champion Eagles to join a team that hasn’t made the playoffs in a decade.

... The Cleveland Browns traded cornerback Jason McCourty to the New England Patriots, reuniting him with his brother, Devin. The Browns also sent a seventh-round pick to the Patriots to get a sixth-rounder in return.

... The man convicted of manslaughter in the 2016 road rage shooting death of former NFL running back Joe McKnight was sentenced to 30 years in prison. McKnight played three seasons for the New York Jets and one with the Kansas City Chiefs.

... The Bengals agreed to a one-year deal with often-injured tight end Tyler Eifert and a three-year deal with punter Kevin Huber, holding onto two of their unrestricted free agents.

... The Chiefs have agreed to a three-year, $7.5 million contract with longtime punter Dustin Colquitt.

... The Panthers and unrestricted free agent defensive tackle Dontari Poe have agreed on a three-year, $28 million deal.