- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 1, 2001

CARLISLE, Pa. The Washington Redskins ended one holdout last night but remained stalled with the other, getting second-round pick Fred Smoot to arrive and sign a contract while first-round pick Rod Gardner remained absent.
Smoot, a cornerback selected 45th overall, signed a four-year deal that included a signing bonus of $1.3 million to $1.4 million, league sources said. He will participate in today's two practices after missing the first two days of camp.
Smoot was not available to comment after reaching Dickinson College in the early evening. He was escorted into one of the team's dorms and later moved directly into team meetings.
After working out with jersey No. 23 during minicamp and summer practices, the affable Mississippi State product will wear No. 21 recently property of star corner Deion Sanders, who retired last week. No. 23 yesterday was given to newly signed running back Ki-Jana Carter.
Smoot's deal essentially was in place Monday night, sources said, when the NFL Management Council was reviewing the language of several incentive clauses. The sides received a ruling yesterday and finalized the incentives after Smoot arrived.
Smoot's signing bonus was paid upfront rather than in the two-tiered structure Gardner will receive. The bonus' value was slotted for where Smoot was selected in the draft after the sides debated whether he should be paid more or less. Major hurdles lingered into the weekend, and it appeared Saturday as though Gardner, a wide receiver, would report before Smoot.
Smoot's camp believed he should be paid like a first-round pick because most scouts agreed that he was one of the draft's premier corners. But Washington thought he should be paid like a risk who dropped into the second round because of off-field concerns, specifically a marajuana charge that later was dropped.
The deal included standard language that protects the Redskins if Smoot gets into off-field trouble, forcing him to repay the prorated portion of his signing bonus, sources said. New England Patriots receiver Terry Glenn, for example, was subject to such language in June after assaulting the mother of his son.
Gardner's basic five-year, $7.6 million structure with a $5.1 million total bonus remained in place for a fourth day, but the sides made little progress in settling the package of incentives and escalators, sources said.

Got Carter

Carter, the star-crossed top overall pick of the 1995 draft, signed a one-year, $418,000 contract to become the top candidate to back up featured rusher Stephen Davis.
After playing just 35 games in five seasons (1995-99) for the Cincinnati Bengals and sitting out last season, Carter agreed to a standard "split" contract with Washington that limits the club's financial liability if he gets injured.
Carter has been waiting patiently for this opportunity, shunning retirement despite an injury history that includes a torn ACL, a fractured wrist and a dislocated kneecap.
"I had the option … but I have a lot of pride in myself, and there's a lot of things I wanted to do," he said. "I still missed [playing] while sitting at home on Sundays watching the games. It was just killing me. I'm in South Florida, and I couldn't go to the games [live] because it was just killing me."
Carter pronounced his joints free of pain but acknowledged that his muscles will ache until he gets into shape. Coach Marty Schottenheimer agreed that Carter's conditioning must improve, saying "the real test is going to be how he feels after this workout because we worked him pretty good.
"He's our kind of guy," Schottenheimer added. "He runs the ball downhill, he's got toughness, he's a strong inside runner, he's a guy who can break tackles and finish runs and he's got very good hands. He's a good receiver."
Carter's signing marks Washington's second free agent acquisition during camp, following Monday's deal with veteran defensive lineman Michael Bankston. Initial workouts for the versatile Bankston came at left end.

Extra points

Schottenheimer acknowledged a report that said he has spoken to former Kansas City Chiefs receiver/returner Tamarick Vanover, saying, "What I told [Vanover] was that I was going to do some research. The only thing I indicated was if, in fact, he's in a position where he's eligible to play, which I'm not sure that he is, we would visit."
Vanover, 27, pled guilty of one count of aiding and abetting the sale of a stolen vehicle. He cooperated with investigators in a plea agreement, then was sentenced to two months of confinement and two more months of home detention and fined $10,000. His cooperation led to the conviction of six others, including former teammate Bam Morris… .
Receiver Darnerien McCants is expected to return punts during the first preseason game, Aug. 12 at Kansas City. Diminutive Winston October is expected to open as the first-string punt returner. At the wing positions on punt coverage, specialist Michael Bates is sure to start on one side, with safety David Terrell a top candidate for the other… .
Starters at several positions of competition were shuffled. Cornerback Donovan Greer worked with the first-string in place of Darrell Green, while veteran guards Ben Coleman and Matt Campbell replaced Derrick Fletcher and Mookie Moore. Players at both positions should switch back and forth… .
Schottenheimer plans a conversation with veteran defensive end Bruce Smith near the end of camp about how many snaps a game will allow Smith to be the most effective. Last season Smith, now 38, rarely exited games and seemed to wear down a bit in the second half.

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