METAIRIE — New Orleans Saints General Manager Mickey Loomis said Thursday that the club re-signed safety Rafael Bush, tight end Michael Higgins and guard Eric Olsen.
All three were reserves last season, but Bush and Olsen saw substantial playing time.
Bush appeared in all 16 games and led the Saints with 15 special-teams tackles to go with a fumble recovery. He also had an interception, which he returned 40 yards, to go with 13 tackles on defense.
Olsen also appeared in all 16 games last season, often checking in as a tackle-eligible tight end to give the Saints an extra blocker. Higgins was signed as an undrafted free agent in 2011. The tight end has appeared in four games with one start.
NO PLANS TO CHANGE NAME: Washington General Manager Bruce Allen said the team isn’t considering a new nickname, adding that it’s “ludicrous” to suggest that the franchise is trying to upset Native Americans.
“There’s nothing that we feel is offensive,” Allen said. “And we’re proud of our history.”
Opposition to the nickname has gained momentum following last week’s symposium at the Smithsonian that was heavily critical of the use of the word, citing its history as an offensive term. Local columnists and commentators have called for the team to change its name.
The Redskins have responded with website postings featuring interviews with officials from the 70 high schools they say still called themselves the Redskins.
Speaking at the ceremonial groundbreaking for the team’s new training camp facility in Richmond, Va., Allen also told reporters that Robert Griffin III was “progressing well” in rehabilitation from knee reconstruction surgery but that the team doctors ultimately will decide whether the franchise quarterback will be ready in time for the start of the season.
Allen also said the team is coming up with a plan to improve the Redskins’ stadium field, which was torn up by the end of the season and prompted criticism from opposing players. He said the team missed an opportunity to re-sod during the season and would plan differently this year.
CB McGEE RELEASED: Buffalo is continuing its purge of veteran defensive players by releasing oft-injured cornerback Terrence McGee.
Having spent 10 seasons in Buffalo, McGee was among the Bills’ longest-serving active players. But injuries began catching up to McGee, who finished last season on injured reserve for the third time in four years.
The former Northwestern State standout was limited to seven games before having surgery on a left knee that hadn’t fully healed from the previous year. McGee had one year left on a contract he had restructured a year ago. The move was announced two days after the Bills cut linebacker Nick Barnett and safety George Wilson.
Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs won’t have to spend a second consecutive offseason recovering from surgery. After getting a second opinion on his torn right biceps, Suggs is planning on rehabbing the injury rather than having it surgically repaired, sources told The Baltimore Sun. ... The Eagles agreed on a two-year contract with quarterback Dennis Dixon, who spent the past season with the Super Bowl-champion Baltimore Ravens on their practice squad. ... New coach Marc Trestman and defensive coordinator Mel Tucker said the Bears will stick with the 4-3 defense that ranked among the league’s best under Lovie Smith.
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