Nnamdi Asomugha had a tough choice: the New York Jets or the Dallas Cowboys?
Then, the Philadelphia Eagles swooped in and snagged the biggest prize in this year's free agent frenzy.
The All-Pro cornerback signed a five-year contract Friday with the Eagles, who gave the former Oakland Raiders star a deal that would pay him $60 million over the life of it, with $25 million guaranteed.
It was a stunning development as the Jets and Cowboys were thought to be the final teams in the sweepstakes for Asomugha's services. Rex Ryan and the Jets dreamed of a No-Fly Zone secondary with Asomugha paired with Darrelle Revis. Meanwhile, the Cowboys and defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, Rex's twin brother, imagined how improved their defense would be with one big move.
Turns out, the Eagles were the team celebrating in the end.
The signing came a day after Philadelphia acquired Pro Bowl cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie from Arizona. The Eagles also formally announced a one-year deal for quarterback Vince Young, a 2006 first-round pick of Tennessee. Young, who went 30-2 as a starter at Texas and led the Longhorns to a national championship in his final game there only to have an up-and-down tenure with the Titans, will back up starter Michael Vick.
Asomugha, considered the top free agent on the market, spent his first eight seasons with the Raiders and is regarded as one of the best players at his position. But the Eagles now have three Pro Bowl cornerbacks on their roster: Asomugha, Rodgers-Cromartie and Asante Samuel, who has 42 interceptions in eight years and has made the Pro Bowl four straight years.
The Indianapolis Colts expect to begin training camp practices Monday without Peyton Manning, who not only is coming off neck surgery, but doesn't have a contract.
Coach Jim Caldwell said the star quarterback is "not ready right now" and that the team will "turn him loose" when he is ready to play.
Manning is in the midst of negotiations on a new contract that Colts owner Jim Irsay says will make the four-time league MVP the highest-paid player in NFL history. Manning has never missed a start — the streak is at 227, including playoffs, the longest active one in the league.
"I've told him to be as cautious as he needs to be because the last time I checked, we don't count preseason games," Pro Bowl center Jeff Saturday said. "I can tell you this, there's not a player that works harder than he does."
At Patriots camp, Chad Ochocinco was wearing his usual number 85 at practice, one day after being traded by the Cincinnati Bengals.
Ochocinco, a reference to the Spanish words for the numbers 8 and 5, legally changed his name from Johnson before the 2008 season. On Friday, he had the number worn last year by rookie tight end Aaron Hernandez, who hasn't practiced following hip surgery in February. Hernandez was on the field wearing shorts with the number 81.
Fans cheered when Ochocinco took the field for the afternoon session.
"I've watched him for a long time," quarterback Tom Brady said. "He brings a lot of energy to the team."
The verbose Ochocinco didn't speak with reporters, although the Patriots officially announced the trade for undisclosed draft considerations on Friday. They still hadn't announced the trade for Washington Redskins defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth.
New England did release seven players, including defensive end Ty Warren, tight end Alge Crumpler and offensive tackle Nick Kaczur. All carried salary cap numbers of at least $3 million. Also released were linebacker Tully Banta-Cain, defensive lineman Marcus Stroud, cornerback Tony Carter and linebacker Ryan Coulson.
The Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers released Mark Tauscher, a fixture at right tackle for the better part of a decade, along with linebackers Nick Barnett, Brandon Chillar and Brady Poppinga and defensive lineman Justin Harrell.
At Spartanburg, S.C., No. 1 draft pick Cam Newton signed a deal with the Carolina Panthers and was attending team meetings. The Panthers said on Twitter that the quarterback "had officially signed on the dotted line."
Bus Cook, Newton's agent, told The Associated Press via a text message Friday night that the deal was for four years and "$22 million-plus."
Panthers coach Ron Rivera had said earlier Friday that he expected the former Auburn quarterback to be at Wofford College when Carolina held its first practice session Saturday.
San Francisco has its new quarterback, too, and it's a familiar face: Alex Smith.
He signed his one-year free agent contract, as expected, giving new coach and former NFL quarterback Jim Harbaugh an experienced starter for this season. Within minutes of completing his deal, Smith was on the sidelines for the team's first training camp practice — even though he can't formally take part in physical activity until Aug. 4 under the new labor requirements.
Meanwhile, running back Frank Gore was a no-show for the first day of camp, apparently fulfilling his plan to hold out for a new contract. The two-time Pro Bowl selection, in the final year of his current deal, has been deemed healthy by his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, who didn't respond to phone messages or email inquiries Friday.
Gore went down with a season-ending fractured hip in a Monday night game at Arizona last Nov. 29, but has recovered.
San Francisco released veteran kicker Joe Nedney and center Eric Heitmann after they failed physicals. Nedney will be replaced by five-time Pro Bowl kicker David Akers, late of the Eagles, who agreed to a deal Thursday.
Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler has a new target and Roy Williams has a chance to redeem himself.
The former Pro Bowl receiver will try to re-energize his career in a system he knows well after signing a one-year deal with Chicago, one of several big moves by the Bears. They also re-signed defensive tackle Anthony Adams and linebacker Nick Roach to two-year contracts, and agreed to a one-year deal with former New York Jets defensive lineman Vernon Gholston.
Two-time Pro Bowl defensive end Osi Umenyiora failed to report for the opening day of the New York Giants training camp and was placed on the reserve-did not report list.
Umenyiora, who said during the recent lockout that general manager Jerry Reese failed to live up to a promise to renegotiate his contract, can be fined $30,000 a day. Umenyiora missed his physical, a team meeting and a conditioning session.
At Vikings camp, the team formally announced the trade with Washington that brings quarterback Donovan McNabb to Minnesota. The Vikings sent a 2012 sixth-round draft choice and a conditional 2013 sixth-rounder. McNabb had to agree to a restructuring of the five-year, $78 million deal he signed with the Redskins for the trade to work.
Miami completed its trade for Reggie Bush by sending safety Jonathon Amaya and an undisclosed draft pick to New Orleans. Bush was acquired Thursday, when he agreed to a two-year contract for nearly $10 million with the Dolphins.
"It's still pretty surreal for me," said Bush, who can't practice with Miami until Aug. 4 because of post-lockout league rules. "This whole experience is great. I'm looking forward to this opportunity."
Miami also cut outspoken linebacker Channing Crowder, who had been a starter since his rookie season in 2005, but was criticized for not making more big plays.
Dolphins quarterback Chad Henne said Friday the team had reached a contract agreement with quarterback Matt Moore, who was not re-signed by Carolina, but Miami had not confirmed the deal.
Pittsburgh cut veteran tackle Flozell Adams, while Atlanta is bringing back a rising star at the position, Tyson Clabo.
After the Steelers agreed to terms with free agents Willie Colon and Jonathan Scott, they released the 36-year-old Adams, who was in the second year of a two-year deal and was scheduled to make $5 million this season.
The Falcons agreed to terms with Pro Bowl tackle Clabo on a five-year deal worth $25 million, about $11.5 million in guaranteed money. Atlanta opened cap room by releasing defensive end Jamaal Anderson and receiver Michael Jenkins, two former first-round picks. The team cleared $7.8 million under the salary cap with those moves, then agreed to terms with DE Ray Edwards on a five-year contract.
— Quarterback Mark Brunell was cut by the Jets, but the 40-year-old could return to back up Mark Sanchez at a reduced salary, two people with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press. Brunell was due $1.25 million in base salary this year.
Punter Steve Weatherford said he is leaving the Jets. He won't be changing stadiums, though, by moving to the Giants.
The Jets cut backup quarterback Kevin O'Connell, who spent last season on injured reserve after hurting his throwing shoulder.
— Jacksonville and safety Dawan Landry agreed on a five-year contract, giving the franchise a third new defensive starter in as many days. Landry, who spent the last five years in Baltimore, is expected to sign a contract Saturday.
They also added cornerback Drew Coleman, a former nickel back for the Jets.
Meanwhile, the Jaguars gave up on 2008 first-round draft pick Derrick Harvey and cut starting guard Vince Manuwai, who showed up at training camp injured, out of shape and overweight.
— Tampa Bay agreed to terms with former Atlanta punter Michael Koenen, then reached deals to re-sign free agent guard Davin Joseph and tackle Jeremy Trueblood. The Buccaneers had a turnaround season in 2010 in great part due to improvement on the offensive line.
— Defensive lineman Shaun Smith, an eight-year veteran, agreed to terms with Tennessee. He spent last season with Kansas City and had 56 tackles and one sack with 10 starts.
— The St. Louis Rams agreed to terms on a four-year contract with guard Harvey Dahl, who had been a fixture in Atlanta and had been considered one of the top free agents at his position.