- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 25, 2008

From combined dispatches

The Washington Redskins continued their slow but steady retention of their free agents yesterday, re-signing offensive lineman Jason Fabini to a one-year contract.

Fabini received a $40,000 signing bonus and will count $485,000 against the salary cap under the provisions for the minimum salary for 10-year veterans.

A 10-year veteran, Fabini originally signed with Washington a year ago tomorrow after a season with the Dallas Cowboys and eight with the New York Jets.

A starting tackle throughout his tenure in New York, the 6-foot-7, 309-pound Fabini played sparingly with Dallas and figured to do the same in Washington. However, when right guard Randy Thomas tore a triceps during the Week 2 game at Philadelphia, Fabini took over and played all but a few snaps for the rest of the season.

“Jason stepped in at a position that he had never played and did an outstanding job,” Redskins executive vice president Vinny Cerrato said. “He’s a versatile backup, and he fits in well the guys.”

Fabini, who will be 34 in August, is expected to join veteran Todd Wade and Stephon Heyer and Lorenzo Alexander as the leading backups to tackles Chris Samuels and Jon Jansen and guards Thomas and Pete Kendall.

Fabini followed backup quarterback Todd Collins, kick returner Rock Cartwright, kicker Shaun Suisham (exclusive rights), little-used defensive lineman Ryan Boschetti and punter Derrick Frost in re-signing with Washington during the past 25 days. The team officially announced Frost’s re-signing yesterday.

Reserve cornerback David Macklin signed with the Rams. Receivers Reche Caldwell and Keenan McCardell, tight end Brian Kozlowski, guards Rick DeMulling and Mike Pucillo, linebacker Randall Godfrey and safeties Pierson Prioleau and Omar Stoutmire are unsigned.

Off the field, the Redskins hired Washington Wizards director of public relations Zack Bolno as executive director of communications.

49ERS: San Francisco forfeited its fifth-round pick in next month’s NFL draft after commissioner Roger Goodell said it tampered with Chicago linebacker Lance Briggs.

In a statement released by the league, Goodell also said the teams will switch picks in the third round of the April 26-27 draft. Chicago, which had the 12th pick, will get San Francisco’s seventh pick, and the 49ers will get Chicago’s choice.

Goodell said the 49ers violated the NFL’s anti-tampering policy by contacting Briggs’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus, about his client during the 2007 season.

BENGALS: Chad Johnson skipped the start of the Cincinnati’s offseason workouts, the latest move to show he’s unhappy with his situation.

Johnson said in interviews last week he is skipping the voluntary workouts to reinforce his message he would like to play somewhere else. The Bengals have said repeatedly they have no intention of trading him.

Johnson has been a regular at the workouts until now.

TITANS: Tennessee started its voluntary offseason program without All-Pro defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth.

The Titans designated Haynesworth as their franchise player Feb. 20, but he is not under contract. The only way Haynesworth can take part would be to sign the tender worth about $7.8 million, which would be 120 percent of his 2007 salary.

The 14-week program starting Monday is voluntary.

TEXANS: Former Jacksonville quarterback Quinn Gray signed a one-year contract with Houston, giving the Texans another experienced backup behind starter Matt Schaub.

Gray, an unrestricted free agent, was Jacksonville’s backup last season. He will be the Texans’ No. 3 quarterback behind Schaub and Sage Rosenfels.

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