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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 01:35 PM

Patriots cut Pro Bowl S Milloy


September 2, 2003
FOXBORO, Massachusetts (Ticker) - Bill Belichick made what he called "the hardest cut" of his career, releasing four-time Pro Bowl safety Lawyer Milloy for salary cap purposes.

A team captain for the last four seasons, Milloy was to earn $4.4 million in 2003 - the fourth year of a seven-year, $35 million deal.

"Of all the players I have released in my career, this easily would be the hardest," Belichick said. "It's an unfortunate situation all the way around but one that we've made and we will have to move forward with it."




With his original signing bonus, Milloy was to count for $5.8 million against the salary cap this season. The Patriots were hoping to soften the salary cap hit, but could not reach an agreement with Milloy and waived him.

"It is just unfortunate that this was kind of a casualty of the way the system is right now," Belichick said. "Both sides tried all the way to, truly, the 11th hour, to try to find a way to make it work but in the end we just weren't able to get it to that point."

Milloy, 29, played his entire seven-year career with the Patriots and has started 106 consecutive games at strong safety. He was selected to three straight Pro Bowls from 1998-2000 and again last year and has served as team captain since 1999.

Known for his ability to play the run, Milloy led the team in tackles from 1998-2001. He played a major role in intimidating St. Louis' receivers in the Patriots Super Bowl XXXVI in January 2002.

But the Patriots signed veteran strong safety Rodney Harrison in the offseason, perhaps indicating that Milloy could be on the way out. However, the Patriots moved Milloy to free safety after trading Tebucky Jones to New Orleans for three draft picks.

Aric Morris, Chris Akins and Antwan Harris are candidates to start at free safety for Sunday's opener at Buffalo.

"They have big shoes to fill," Belichick said. "Chris, Antwan and Aric have all worked there (free safety) and we will go with what we have and those players will get an opportunity to step in and play that position."

But the shock of losing Milloy may have an effect on the Patriots, who open the regular season Sunday in Buffalo.

"Today is a day that nobody is happy about," Belichick said. "This isn't the way we wanted this story to end."



Updated on Tuesday, Sep 2, 2003 2:03 pm EDT



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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 02:04 PM

stunning cut.


the salary cap cuts suck the hardest.
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 02:24 PM

Will Milloy face Pats in Week 1?
Could standout strong safety Lawyer Milloy actually line up against his former team in Sunday's regular season opener? Don't bet against it.

Armed with Drew Bledsoe's endorsement, the Buffalo Bills have already contacted Milloy's agents and made an opening contract proposal, ESPN.com has learned.

The Patriots and Bills meet in Buffalo Sunday in what already is seen as a key matchup of AFC East contenders.

Several teams may interested in Milloy, a top safety and respected locker room presence. A few might hesitate to sign Milloy, 29, before this wekend, since "vested" veterans have their base salaries guaranteed on opening day, but Buffalo wants to complete a deal quickly if the financial numbers are right.

"We'd sign him right now and play him on Sunday," said a high-ranking team official.

The current Buffalo starters, Coy Wire and Pierson Priloeau, are solid defenders but not in Milloy's class. The two did not have an interception between them in 2002.
--Len Pasquarelli


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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 08:08 PM

ESPNews is reporting that the Cowboys and at least 7 other teams have contacted Milloy.
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 09:31 PM

I know Da boys are in need of playmakers but where would Milloy fit in?
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 10:01 PM

He doesn't fit in here. We are stacked at safety. The link is obviously due to the fact that Milloy and Parcells are close. I think Parcells brought him into the league or somesuch.
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 10:24 PM

You can never have too much talent. Woodson doesn't have THAT many years left.
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Default RE: Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 10:45 PM

if he's not too expensive, the boys should grab him. could you imagine that rotation. I know it doesn't make much sense, but i've liked Milloy from day one, and would love to see him with a star on his helmet. But if he goes elsewhere, i hope it's the Bills. I used to be a huge Pat fan, but with Bledsoe gone, and Milloy possibly to join him in buffalo, i think the Bills might turn into my 2nd fav team.



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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 10:47 PM

He's going to be damned expensive.
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 11:17 PM

Tony Dixon is a pretty good safety. With him being out a guy like Milloy could take the role he plays but i'm not sure if a star like Milloy would want to play that type of role on a team like the Cowboys. IMO, Woody has shown me no signs of slowing down. Actually lately he has been putting on some hits that make me question will he ever slow down.





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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-02-2003, 11:57 PM

Woodson's 34 and going into his 12th season. That's a lot of mileage. Even the most optimistic fan would say that he's only got 2-3 more years left.
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-03-2003, 12:12 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by: MFFL
Woodson's 34 and going into his 12th season. That's a lot of mileage. Even the most optimistic fan would say that he's only got 2-3 more years left.


Is he really that old? Milloy is 29 years old. If he keeps up the pace as Woody did by the time Woody is a free agent Milloy would just be 31.





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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-03-2003, 01:54 AM

Woodson's that old. And he's in the second year of a 5 year contract so he's here until 2006 (not that anyone expects that he will play out the contract).
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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-03-2003, 09:50 AM

IF the cowboys have contacted Milloy i'd love to have him in Dallas, who knows if Parcells wants to play him at a different position .. either way it goes Milloy is a player, and i'd love to have him on the Cowboys.


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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-03-2003, 03:48 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by: MFFL
Woodson's that old. And he's in the second year of a 5 year contract so he's here until 2006 (not that anyone expects that he will play out the contract).

Wasn't he signed to a 2 year deal or was it a 2 year extension?






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Default Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 09-03-2003, 05:06 PM

http://www.boston.com/dailynews/246/...ith_Bil:.shtml


Milloy agrees to sign with Bills


By John Wawrow, Associated Press, 9/3/2003 17:42

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) Lawyer Milloy agreed to sign with the Buffalo Bills on Wednesday, a day after being cut by the New England Patriots.

The move adds to an intriguing season opener the Bills host the Patriots on Sunday. In addition to Milloy, Drew Bledsoe, Buffalo's quarterback, is a former star in New England.

Besides significantly upgrading a young Buffalo defensive backfield, Milloy could provide insight into the Bills plans as they prepare for New England.

Milloy was expected to join the team for his first practice on Thursday.

Coach Gregg Williams said he would have to first speak with Milloy before determining whether he would be ready to play this weekend.

Milloy was released by the Patriots for salary-cap reasons on Tuesday. The move created a stir, in part because Milloy was a team leader and had started 106 consecutive games over his seven NFL seasons.

Adding the bonus to his $4.4 million salary for this season, Milloy was to count $5.25 million against New England's cap.

The Bills, projected to have $4 million of room under the cap, were one of a handful of team that had made offers to sign the player.

Terms of Milloy's new deal were not immediately available.

Milloy led the Patriots in tackles in 2001, when New England won the Super Bowl, and recorded 100 or more tackles five times. Last year he had no sacks, no forced fumbles and no interceptions. His 91 tackles were the fewest he'd tallied since becoming a full-time starter.

He's the latest addition to a revamped Bills defense that was bolstered last spring by the additions of linebackers Takeo Spikes and Jeff Posey and tackle Sam Adams. Together, they improve a unit that gave up 25 points a game, and managed a league-low 19 turnovers and 31 sacks.

Buffalo's current starters at safety are Coy Wire, who's coming off an encouraging rookie season, and Pierson Prioleau, a four-year veteran who was a first-time starter last season. Neither recorded an interception last year.

Bills president Tom Donahoe denied speculation that Milloy might have lost a step.

''We think he's still a good football player. Obviously the Patriots do too, they tried to keep them,'' Donahoe said.

Bledsoe had high praise for Milloy, having spent six seasons with the player in New England.

''I will tell you this that everybody that plays against Lawyer is aware of where he is and aware of his ability to make big plays,'' Bledsoe said. ''As far as his speed, his aggressiveness, his physical style, I haven't seen a falloff at all.''

Besides improving the Bills defense, Milloy would be valuable for Bledsoe to provide insight into the Patriots defensive plans.

''I would certainly love to sit down and pick his brain,'' Bledsoe said.

Wire welcomed the chance of the Bills landing Milloy, even if it meant Wire losing his starting job.

''Any time you can have a guy like that come in and help your defense, you're excited about it,'' Wire said. ''This is a team game.''

Earlier in the day, New England fullback Larry Centers didn't want to consider the prospect Milloy joining the Bills, their next opponent.

''That would be a nightmare,'' Centers said during a conference call with members of the Buffalo media.
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Default RE:Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 02-02-2004, 12:21 AM

just bumping an old thread. I'm shocked that the Pats were able to overcome the loss of Milloy so easily.
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Default RE: Patriots cut Lawyer Milloy - 02-03-2004, 09:09 AM

they just replaced him with harrison. they are both 2 of the top SS's. Milloy should have known something was up when the Pats signed Harrison.



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