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Garcia joins Browns

He agrees to deal worth $25 million

Free agent quarterback Jeff Garcia agreed to a four-year, $25 million contract yesterday with Cleveland, apparently ending Tim Couch's rocky era with the Browns.

Browns president Carmen Policy said Garcia's deal is worth $10 million over the first two years, with an option for the final two years.

Garcia, 34, a three-time Pro Bowler, was unable to agree on a restructured contract with the San Francisco 49ers, who released him earlier this month after five seasons.

Garner joins Bucs

Free agent running back Charlie Garner signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who also added offensive lineman Matt O'Dwyer and linebacker Keith Burns.

Garner, 32, who had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee last week, has played 10 NFL seasons for Philadelphia, San Francisco and Oakland. He signed a four-year deal worth $10 million.

In another development for the Bucs, seven-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle Warren Sapp will begin considering offers from other teams, according to his agent.

Steelers sign Staley

Running back Duce Staley signed a five-year contract worth $14 million with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Staley spent the last seven seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, and is expected to boost the Steelers' running game, which ranked 31st last year. The deal includes a $4 million signing bonus . . . The Jacksonville Jaguars signed former Patriots offensive tackle Mike Compton. The 6-foot-6-inch, 310-pound Compton started the first two games last season for the Patriots before being placed on injured reserve with a broken foot. The Jaguars also signed cornerbacks Dewayne Washington and Lewis Sanders . . . The Seattle Seahawks agreed to terms with free agent wide receiver Darrell Jackson on a reported six-year, $25 million contract that includes an $8 million bonus. Jackson, one of the most sought-after receivers in this year's free agent class, had 68 catches for a career-high 1,137 yards with nine touchdowns. The Seahawks also re-signed defensive tackle Cedric Woodard to a multiyear contract . . . Cornerback Sam Madison has restructured his contract to save the Miami Dolphins about $3 million against the salary cap. Agent Gene Burrough said Madison reduced his $8 million cap figure to about $5.1 million. Madison will now make $6.5 million, including $6 million in bonuses.

Last Raven

Kicker Matt Stover agreed to a new five-year contract with Baltimore, keeping the last original Raven with the team . . . The Washington Redskins signed veteran free agent punter Tom Tupa, a former Patriot who spent the last two seasons with Tampa Bay . . . The NFL Players Association asked an arbitrator to declare receiver Terrell Owens an unrestricted free agent, which would allow him to join the team of his choice. Owens was traded to the Baltimore Ravens Thursday after his agent missed a deadline to file paperwork that would have made him a free agent . . . Free agent linebacker Dhani Jones signed with the Eagles. Jones had 120 tackles and three sacks for the New York Giants last season . . . Former Denver Broncos general manager John Beake is retiring as the NFL's vice president of football operations. The league also announced that Hall of Fame offensive tackle and former Raiders coach Art Shell, who has been serving part-time in the football operations department, will join the NFL on a full-time basis with expanded responsibilities for football activities. Commissioner Paul Tagliabue said a new head of football operations will be appointed after a review of the league office's football functions.

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