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Becoming a Christian does not make life easier. Becoming a Christian makes you acceptable to God. Therefore, we can endure rotten things with joy because our biggest problem has been solved.

- Todd Friel


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Free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins is predictably the top priority on Minnesota's offseason shopping list....

     MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins is predictably the top priority on Minnesota's offseason shopping list. Cousins will visit with the Vikings on Wednesday after the league year begins, his agent Mike McCartney said. ESPN reported today that Cousins will sign with the Vikings, but McCartney said no decision has been made yet by his client.
     The New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals were the other clubs expected to pursue Cousins, who has parlayed consecutive seasons playing for Washington on a franchise tag salary into a big payday on the open market at age 29.
     With contracts expiring for Case Keenum, Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Bradford, plenty of space under the salary cap and an appearance in the NFC championship game, the Vikings present a desirable destination for Cousins.
    ESPN reported Keenum plans to sign with the Broncos when free agency opens Wednesday.

    Teddy Bridgewater is reportedly finalizing a deal with the New York Jets.

    A person with knowledge of the situation said Sam Bradford and the Cardinals have agreed to a one-year, $20 million contract with a second-year option, also for $20 million.


     NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Drew Brees has agreed to a two-year, $50 million extension with the New Orleans Saints. That word comes from a person familiar with the contract. The person said $27 million is guaranteed in the first year.
     Brees, who turned 39 in January, was due to become a free agent on Wednesday. But he has said he wanted to finish his career in New Orleans, where he has played since 2006, won a Super Bowl and led what has been one of the most productive offenses in the NFL since he and coach Sean Payton arrived.
     Last season, Brees completed an NFL-record 72 percent of his passes for 4,334 yards and 23 touchdowns against eight interceptions. He ranked fourth in the NFL in yards passing and the Saints ranked second in the NFL in total offense.
     In other NFL news:
     - The Kansas City Chiefs have agreed to deals with wide receiver Sammy Watkins and linebacker Anthony Hitchens, filling two of their biggest needs in free agency. That word comes from two people familiar with the negotiations. The 24-year-old Watkins intends to sign a $48 million, three-year contract with $30 million in guarantees after spending last season with the Los Angeles Rams. Hitchens agreed to a five-year deal that The Kansas City Star reported will be worth about $9 million per year.
     - A person familiar with the negotiations says receiver Danny Amendola is discussing a contract offer from the Miami Dolphins and is likely to sign with them when the NFL's new year begins Wednesday. Former Kansas City Chiefs receiver Albert Wilson is expected to sign a $24 million, three-year deal with Miami. Wilson and Amendola would replace three-time Pro Bowl receiver Jarvis Landry, whom the Dolphins have agreed to trade to the Cleveland Browns for two draft picks.
     - Tight end Trey Burton, who threw a touchdown pass to quarterback Nick Foles in Philadelphia's victory over New England in the Super Bowl, has agreed to a $32 million, four-year contract with the Chicago Bears, according to two people familiar with the deal. The Eagles also lost another tight end, releasing veteran Brent Celek to save $4 million under the salary cap. Celek was the longest-tenured player on the team, missing only one game in 11 seasons.
     - Jacksonville Jaguars receiver Allen Robinson tells ESPN he plans to sign with the Chicago Bears. The 2015 Pro Bowl selection says he intends to sign a three-year, $42 million contract when free agency opens on Wednesday. Robinson says he was impressed by new Bears coach Matt Nagy, saying "I like what he did" as offensive coordinator with the Kansas City Chiefs. The Bears were looking to upgrade their struggling receiving corps and surround quarterback Mitchell Trubisky with more playmakers.
     - The Detroit Lions have re-signed safety Tavon Wilson. Detroit made the move Tuesday, a day before the start of free agency. Wilson has started 23 of 25 games the last two years with the Lions. The New England Patriots picked Wilson in the second round in 2012 and the former Illinois star played in 54 games, starting four, over four years with them.
     - A person familiar with the situation confirms to The Associated Press that free agent defensive tackle Star Lotulelei has reached an agreement to sign a five-year contract with the Buffalo Bills. The signing won't become official until the NFL's business year opens tomorrow. Lotulelei was a five-year starter with Carolina after being selected by the Panthers in the first round of the 2013 draft.
     - Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams is putting off retirement to return for a 13th season in Buffalo. Williams agreed to a one-year contract, the Bills announced Tuesday, a day before the NFL's free agency period opened. Williams' contract had expired and he didn't rule out the possibility of retiring for a second consecutive offseason.
     - Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Paul Posluszny, the second-leading tackler in franchise history, is retiring from the NFL after 11 seasons. The 33-year-old Posluszny announced his decision in a letter to fans today, one day before he was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent.

     MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The Minnesota Lynx have signed free-agent guard Tanisha Wright. The defending WNBA champions announced Wright's signing today. Terms were not disclosed.
     Wright is a 12-year veteran who most recently played for New York in 2016, averaging 6.7 points and 3.6 assists in 29 games. Wright also played on the Seattle Storm's WNBA championship team in 2010. She was named to the All-Defensive first team five times and the second team twice. Wright is one only 16 players to have at least 3,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists. She just completed her first season as an assistant coach at the UNC-Charlotte.


   (Copyright 2018 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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