February 16, 2011

Saints visit with free agent Shaun Rogers

Former Browns DT Shaun Rogers, 31, visited with the Saints on Wednesday.

With two days and two weeks before the end of the league's labor agreement with its union, Rogers is free to sign with any team because he was released by the Browns on February 9.

On midnight, March 4, the Collective Bargaining Agreement expires and free agency does not begin as usual.

Rogers announced his visit with New Orleans today via twitter, and the Saints confirmed the visit.  Rogers is being pursued by a number of teams and visited with the Redskins and Chiefs before arriving in New Orleans.

At 6'4, 350 pounds, Rogers has been a force against the run for 10 seasons and 140 games in the NFL, seven with the Lions before spending the last three with the Browns.  Rogers went to high school in LaPorte, TX southeast of Houston and played at the University of Texas.  He has said in radio interviews that it would be a dream for him to play for his home town Texans.

Rogers has had a rough go of it in the NFL, never playing for a team with a winning record.  He was cut by Cleveland halfway through a six year, $42 million contract with $20 million guaranteed.  But Rogers spent the past season as a rotation player, starting only one game.

Despite his size, Rogers did not seem fit to play in the 3-4 Browns defense and enjoyed two of his three Pro Bowl years in the Lions' 4-3.  After making the Pro Bowl in his first season as a Brown, he's declined since.  The Saints are used to using their defensive tackles in rotation, having heavily used Anthony Hargrove and Jimmy Wilkerson behind starters Sedrick Ellis and Remi Ayodele. Hargrove, Wilkerson and Ayodele are set to be free agents.

Rogers isn't without off-field issues.  Not a good practice player, few big men are, Rogers was also arrested for carrying a loaded gun onto an airplane in April of last year, a third degree felony.  He narrowly avoided a league suspension but was fined one game check by the NFL.

NOPF News Archive