The Buffalo Bills traded running back Willis McGahee to the Baltimore Ravens for three draft choices yesterday, a day after Jamal Lewis signed with Cleveland.
The Bills will get third- and seventh-round picks this year and a third next year.
McGahee had one year left on his five-year contract with Buffalo, and had been seeking an extension.
"This is a runner who can make people miss and has the explosion and speed to take it the distance," Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome said. "He also has the power and size to run inside. He's a viable receiver out of the backfield and is a good pass blocker, not something every back can do.
"He also plays physical and with toughness, which are things we pride ourselves on here."
Lewis, whose productivity had been declining, was released last week by the Ravens.
McGahee will take over as the No. 1 back, ahead of sparingly used backup Mike Anderson and Musa Smith, who has primarily been used on special teams.
"We're getting a dynamic back who has the potential to diversify our running game," Ravens coach Brian Billick said.
Buffalo's first-round pick out of Miami in 2003, McGahee is coming off a down season in which he finished with a career-low 990 yards rushing, but led the team with six touchdowns rushing in 14 starts.
In 2005, he had 1,247 yards rushing and five touchdowns in 15 starts.
He established himself as the Bills' starter in 2004 with 1,128 yards rushing and 13 touchdowns in 11 starts. That performance led the team to trade former starter Travis Henry to Tennessee the following summer.
Making a splash
The Miami Dolphins signed kicker Jay Feely
to a three-year contract, meaning longtime Dolphins kicker Olindo Mare
could be released or traded. Feely, 29, signed as an unrestricted free agent after two seasons with the New York Giants.
In six seasons in the NFL, the first four with Atlanta, Feely has converted 156 of 196 field goal attempts. Feely has hit about 84 percent of his attempted field goals for the Giants in the last two years.
Mare is the Dolphins' all-time leader in field goals with 245.
Also, Miami signed free agent wide receiver Kelly Campbell, re-signed defensive tackle Keith Traylor to a two-year contract, and inked free agent safety Cameron Worrell to a two-year deal.
Ex-Patriots sign on
Former Patriots wide receiver and kick returner Bethel Johnson
reached agreement on a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles. In his career, Johnson has returned 147 kickoffs for 3,611 yards and two touchdowns. He also has 39 catches for 606 yards and four touchdowns . . . The Washington Redskins added depth to the offensive line by signing free agent Ross Tucker
. Tucker was traded from New England to Cleveland last summer, but he did not make the Browns' roster and sat out the 2006 season . . . According to a report in the Denver Post, the Broncos signed quarterback Patrick Ramsey
to replace Jake Plummer
as Jay Cutler's
backup. Ramsey has 34 touchdown passes and 29 interceptions and a career passer rating of 74.9 . . . Fullback Darian Barnes
, who started six games last season with Miami, signed with the New York Jets . . . Free safety Terrence Holt
signed a five-year contract with the Arizona Cardinals. Terms weren't disclosed. Holt started 15 games last season for the Detroit Lions . . . The Seattle Seahawks released fiery defensive end Grant Wistrom
after three years of struggling to match the six-year, $33 million deal he signed in 2004. He was scheduled to make $3.5 million in 2007.
McMichael to Rams
Tight end Randy McMichael
, who has averaged 65 catches the last three seasons in Miami, agreed to a three-year contract with the Rams. McMichael was released last week for salary cap purposes . . . The Rams also agreed on a four-year contract with safety Todd Johnson
, who spent the last four seasons with the NFC champion Chicago Bears . . . The Minnesota Vikings re-signed safety Tank Williams
to a one-year contract after he missed the 2006 season following a knee injury . . . Tight end Reggie Kelly
signed a three-year contract with the Cincinnati Bengals, choosing to stay with one of the NFL's top offenses rather than leave as an unrestricted free agent . . . Punter Andy Lee
will stay with the San Francisco 49ers, who matched the Pittsburgh Steelers' six-year, $7 million contract offer to the restricted free agent . . . Bengals cornerback Johnathan Joseph
was allowed to enter a diversion program for possession of marijuana. The misdemeanor charge will be dismissed if he completes the program, which typically includes community service or attending a substance abuse program. He was arrested Jan. 22 in Boone (Ky.) County.
© Copyright 2007 Globe Newspaper Company.