Collins joins Oakland

The Oakland Raiders have added veteran free agent quarterback Kerry Collins. The 31-year old Collins has been a starter in the Super Bowl, in two NFC Championship games and played in a Pro Bowl. Collins has played in 123 NFL contests with 117 starts since originally entering the NFL as a first round draft choice by the Carolina Panthers in 1995.

"We're pleased and excited to have Kerry join the Raiders," said Raiders Head Coach Norv Turner. "Kerry is a highly productive performer who will add to what is already a talented position."

In nine NFL seasons, Collins has thrown for 26,383 yards with 132 touchdown passes. He has a career quarterback rating of 73.1. The 6-5, 245-pound Collins has thrown for over 3,000 yards in each of the past four seasons.

"I'm very excited about joining the Raiders and I'm looking forward to a great opportunity," said Collins. "I'd like nothing more than to win a championship with the Raiders and I'm looking forward to playing in front of the Raider Nation. I want them to know that I'm going to give everything I've got."

Last year, Collins totaled 3,110 yards for the New York Giants despite missing three games due to injury. In 2002, he amassed career highs in passing yards (4,073), completion percentage (61.5), yards per attempt (7.47) and quarterback rating (85.4). Collins threw for 3,764 yards in 2001 and his high in touchdown passes came in 2000 when he tossed 22 while totaling 3,610 passing yards.

He spent the past five seasons with New York, where the led the Giants to playoff appearances in 2000 and 2002. Collins was the starter for the Giants when New York captured the NFC Championship following the 2000 season and played in Super Bowl XXXV.

Collins leaves New York second on the Giants' career list in completions (1,447), third in passing yards (16,875), fifth in touchdowns (81) and first in completion percentage (58.51) among quarterbacks who have thrown at least 1,000 passes.

In 1998, he played for the New Orleans Saints after spending his first three NFL seasons with the Panthers. Collins earned a spot on the NFC Pro Bowl roster while leading the expansion Panthers to the NFC Championship Game in 1996, Carolina's second year of existence in the NFL.

The Lebanon, Pennsylvania native was a first-team All-America at Penn State after directing the Nittany Lions to a 12-0 record as a senior in 1994 and a victory in the Rose Bowl. He threw 21 touchdown passes and won the Davey O'Brien Award as the nation's top college quarterback.

He was twice drafted by Major League Baseball clubs-by the Detroit Tigers in 1990 and Toronto Blue Jays in 1994-as a pitcher.


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