After a long awaited decision regarding his twenty-one years in the NFL, Wednesday morning Jerry Rice agreed to a one-year contract with the Denver Broncos as the teams' No. 4 wide receiver.
Sources have confirmed that the legendary receiver, who holds almost every conceivable NFL receiving record, will join camp vying for a roster spot against Rod Smith, Ashley Lelie and Darius Watts.
Rice reportedly will get a one-year deal for the veteran minimum of $765,000 and a $25,000 signing bonus.
The agreement reunites Rice with Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan, who served as Rice's offensive coordinator from 1992-1994 with the San Francisco 49ers.
"There's no promises of him being the third receiver, the fourth receiver, the fifth receiver," Shanahan told reporters. "I told Jerry that I don't know if he's lost a step or two steps, but you're going to come here for one reason and that's to compete with the other guys. And if you're one of our top five guys at the end of camp, then you're going to be on our football team. If you're not, I said I'd have one of the toughest jobs in the world."
At forty-two years old, Rice has found himself fighting for playing time, both with the Oakland Raiders and last season with the Seattle Seahawks, where he caught just 30 passes for 429-yards and three touchdowns.
Now in the twilight of his career, Rice is forced accepts the fact that he must earn his way onto the field, and with the Broncos corps. of receivers it will be an uphill battle.
"We're not just bringing him in here because he's a leader and he knows the game," Shanahan said. "I'm bringing him in here because I think there's a legitimate chance for him to help our football team to win. He knows that there's no promises and that he expects it no other way."
Schon can be reached at Schon@prostarmediagroup.net
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