- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Jeremy Shockey was traded to the Saints for two draft picks Monday, giving New Orleans a disgruntled star tight end who watched from afar while injured as the New York Giants surged to the Super Bowl title.

The Giants will receive second- and fifth-round picks in the 2009 draft. The deal must be approved by the league and is contingent on Shockey passing a physical.

The deal reunites Shockey with Saints coach Sean Payton, who was the Giants’ offensive coordinator in 2002, when Shockey was named rookie of the year.

“I have had a relationship with Coach Payton, and I appreciate what he has done as a head coach,” Shockey said in a statement released by the Saints. “The Saints have a lot of weapons starting with Drew Brees, and I look forward to joining my teammates at training camp. This will be a fun year.”

The Saints report to training camp in Jackson, Miss., on Wednesday with several other tight ends on the roster, including last year’s starter, Eric Johnson, along with Billy Miller and Mark Campbell.

Shockey, a four-time Pro Bowl selection who spent six seasons with the Giants, broke his leg against the Washington Redskins on Dec. 16.

He is known for his offensive ability more than his blocking and was unhappy even before the injury - he was asked to block in addition to catch. Once hurt, he didn’t like the fact that much was made of the Giants winning with rookie Kevin Boss in his place.

“Jeremy brought great energy to the game every time he stepped on the field,” said Giants team president John Mara, son of the late Wellington Mara, a longtime owner of the team. “He had a close relationship with my father from the time we drafted him, and I had a couple of long conversations with Jeremy this spring and summer. From those conversations, it was apparent to me that a fresh start was the best thing for us and for Jeremy.”

BENGALS: Receiver Chad Johnson said he will report on time for training camp next weekend but his surgically repaired ankle will probably prevent him from fully participating.

Johnson also said in a phone interview that he wants to move on from his failed attempt to maneuver a trade. He had threatened to sit out the season if he wasn’t dealt, but the Bengals refused to trade him, turning down an offer from Washington before the draft in April.

Johnson showed up for a mandatory minicamp last month but didn’t fully participate the first two days because of a sore right ankle. He had surgery to remove bone spurs June 18. Johnson estimated he’s about 60 percent recovered and won’t be able to go at full-speed when the Bengals hold their first training camp workout Monday in Georgetown, Ky.

JETS: New York placed disgruntled tight end Chris Baker on the active-physically unable to perform list on Monday along with backup linebacker Jason Trusnik.

Baker, angry that the Jets have refused to renegotiate his contract, missed a portion of minicamp last month after tweaking his back during practice. He was reportedly fined by the team for missing an injury treatment session.

When asked whether the move was expected or related to the contract dispute, Baker’s agent, Jonathan Feinsod, replied simply: “No comment, no comment, no comment.”

A team spokesman said the move is not contract related.

PATRIOTS: New England signed free agent tackle Anthony Clement, along with a wide receiver and two of their draft picks.

The team signed linebacker Shawn Crable and quarterback Kevin O’Connell, two players drafted in the third round this year. Also getting a contract was wide receiver Chris Dunlap, who was released by the Patriots last Sept. 1 after signing as a rookie free agent out of Georgia Tech on May 14.

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