Wayne lost starting job last season

Updated: February 24, 2005, 8:58 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Philadelphia Eagles: The NFC champions released linebacker Nate Wayne, who lost his starting job this past season.

Wayne, 30, started his second year with the Eagles as the club's starting weakside linebacker but lost his job at midseason.

Mark Simoneau was shifted to the weakside after Jeremiah Trotter was inserted as the starter at middle linebacker, a move that helped the Eagles improve against the run.

In 25 games with the Eagles, Wayne collected 173 tackles, four sacks and one interception.

"We appreciate all the contributions Nate has made during the past two seasons," Eagles coach Andy Reid said. "We wish him the best. Hopefully the timing of this will help him land an opportunity with another club."

New Orleans Saints: Negotiators for the state and the team are trying to set up a fourth meeting.

"We haven't agreed on a date, but we're trying to,'' said Superdome commission president Tim Coulon, the state's chief negotiator. "It's not easy to get a time we can all get together."

The two sides have met only three times to try to hammer out a new deal that would keep the Saints in a renovated Superdome longterm.

"We're still sorting out the areas we can work on,'' Coulon said. "We're trying to see where there is some room to negotiate.''

The state wants to replace an agreement worked out under the administration of former Gov. Mike Foster. Louisiana has had to borrow money to make the annual payments called for under the deal. Those payments would escalate to $23.5 million in the last years of the deal.

The Saints want a long-term deal and owner Tom Benson is willing to stay in a renovated Superdome rather than demand a new stadium. The sticking point is expected to be Gov. Kathleen Blanco's demand that the team bear some of the cost of the deal.

Information from SportsTicker and The Associated Press was used in this report.