AFC camps: Russell won't be with Oakland for first day of camp

Updated: July 28, 2007, 12:51 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

JaMarcus Russell, the No. 1 overall pick in last April's NFL draft, remains without a contract and was the most notable no-show when the Raiders reported to training camp on Thursday.

Coach Lane Kiffin refused to call Russell a holdout but acknowledged the rookie quarterback was not even in California. Instead, the 6-foot-6, 260-pound Russell remained 2,400 miles away at his home in Mobile, Ala.

"We're moving along very quickly but at the same time we're doing things in the best interest for our future as well,'' Kiffin said. "We don't have anything mandatory till [Friday] morning, so as far as guys being here, they're all showing up at different times.''

Russell and second-round pick Zach Miller are they only draft picks who remained unsigned and did not report to the Raiders' training camp headquarters. Oakland did sign a pair of third-round picks Thursday: defensive end Quentin Moses of Georgia and receiver Johnnie Lee Higgins from Texas-El Paso.

"We're making a lot of progress right now with all of them and extremely close on some,'' Kiffin said. "But we are expecting everybody to be in camp. We'd like everybody to be here when we start practicing.''

Talks between the Raiders, Russell and his agent, Eric Metz, have been ongoing for weeks but the sides have yet to strike an agreement. Russell is said to be seeking a deal worth $60 million. Last year's No. 1 overall pick, defensive end Mario Williams of the Houston Texans, signed a six-year, $54 million deal that included $26.5 million in guaranteed money.

Elsewhere in AFC camps:

Buffalo Bills: His back feeling limber, quarterback J.P. Losman practiced for the first time Friday, a day after the Bills opened training camp.

"There was no pain out there today, pretty much zero," said Losman, who was activated off the physically-unable-to-perform list after straining his lower back while working out earlier this week. The second-year starter missed the team's first two practices on Thursday.

Running back Marshawn Lynch also made his camp debut after the rookie first-round draft signed a five-year, $19 million contract late Thursday.

"I had to get back into it, get the feel of the ball, put the cleats back on and get my feet dirty," Lynch said. "It's just getting back into some football after being out of it for quite some time ... the feeling you get when you're ready to go."

Indianapolis Colts: Tight end Anthony Gonzalez signed a five-year, $7.5 million contract and reported to camp. Gonzalez was the 32nd pick in last April's NFL draft.

"Anthony is very excited to put this behind him and have the ability to concentrate on what he loves, and that's football,'' Mike McCartney, Gonzalez's agent, said in the Indianapolis Star. "I have to say the Colts did a very good job of negotiating in good faith.''

New England Patriots: Randy Moss was a popular attraction for the huge crowd of screaming fans who showed up to watch the New England Patriots' first practice of training camp Friday.

But they didn't see Asante Samuel or Brandon Meriweather, two defensive backs involved in contract disputes.

Samuel is holding out after being offered $7.79 million as a franchise player but not the long-term contract he wanted. Meriweather, the Patriots' first-round pick out of Miami, is their only unsigned draft choice.

Meanwhile, defensive lineman Richard Seymour headed a group of seven players placed on the physically unable to perform list by the Patriots, who also released running back Justise Hairston.

Besides Seymour, who made the last five Pro Bowls, New England placed on the PUP list wide receivers Troy Brown and Chad Jackson, cornerback Eddie Jackson, safety Mel Mitchell, wide receiver Donte' Stallworth and tight end David Thomas.

They can be activated at any time.

Tennessee Titans: Running back Chris Henry agreed to terms Friday on a four-year deal with the Titans, leaving only top draft pick Michael Griffin without a deal hours before the team's first practice of training camp.

Agent Josh Luchs said Friday that Henry had agreed to terms. He declined to discuss the deal for the 50th pick overall.

Henry will compete with veteran Chris Brown and LenDale White, last year's second-round pick, for the starting job. Travis Henry, who ran for 1,211 yards last season, now is in Denver after being released in March so the Titans could avoid an $8 million bonus.

Cleveland Browns: Browns center LeCharles Bentley won't be on the practice field for training camp despite being cleared by his surgeon this week.

The two-time Pro Bowler will continue his rehabilitation from a career-threatening knee injury, general manager Phil Savage said Friday before the Browns' first practice of training camp.

Team physician Anthony Miniaci examined Bentley on Friday, exactly one year after Bentley tore the patellar tendon in his left knee on the Browns' first 11-on-11 drill of training camp.

The Browns decided to delay his physical four weeks, Savage said. "He's not quite ready to put on equipment and practice on the football field with us," Savage said.

The only other player missing Friday was rookie quarterback Brady Quinn, the lone holdout after offensive tackle Joe Thomas and defensive back Eric Wright signed just before camp started.

The team had discussions with Quinn's agent, Tom Condon, on Thursday and Friday, Savage said, adding that talks could go into the night. Condon did not return a phone call seeking comment.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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