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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, March 18, 2006

Kahuku alum Fonoti signs with Buccaneers

Advertiser Staff

Free-agent guard Toniu Fonoti signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers yesterday.

The former second-round pick has appeared in 34 games, with 33 starts, in four NFL seasons with San Diego and Minnesota. He started two games with the Chargers in 2005 before being traded to the Vikings on Oct. 18.

Fonoti, a Kahuku High alum who played at Nebraska, was the 39th player taken in the 2002 draft. He started 14 of 15 games he played as a rookie in San Diego. He missed the 2003 season because of an injury, then started all 16 games for the Chargers in 2004.

Fonoti had agreed in principle to a one-year contract with Oakland earlier in the week, but never signed the deal.



The New York Jets obtained quarterback Patrick Ramsey from the Washington Redskins for a sixth-round pick in next month's draft, giving them insurance if Chad Pennington is slow to recover from his second shoulder injury in two years.

Ramsey, Washington's first-round pick in 2002, was benched when Joe Gibbs took over for Steve Spurrier and the team obtained Mark Brunell to start.

In his four seasons, Ramsey has started 24 games, throwing for 34 touchdowns with 29 interceptions.

The Jets also are trying to trade disgruntled defensive end John Abraham to Seattle or Atlanta. A person familiar with the negotiations, who didn't want to be identified because the talks were ongoing, said yesterday the Seahawks have presented the best trade package for Abraham: a first-round pick. Atlanta is offering a second-round pick.



The Seahawks' hopes of keeping All-Pro guard Steve Hutchinson will be decided by an arbitration process.

That will delay tomorrow's deadline for the team to match an offer to Hutchinson by Minnesota.

The NFL Players Association said yesterday the league has filed a claim on behalf of the Seahawks contending a clause in the offer sheet Hutchinson signed with the Vikings last weekend circumvents the league's labor contract. That would mean that Seattle does not have to match that clause to keep Hutchinson, who is designated as their transition player.

The clause in question would guarantee Hutchinson the entire contract sum if Hutchinson is not the team's highest-paid offensive lineman.

Hutchinson signed a $49 million, seven-year offer sheet with Minnesota last Sunday. It included $16 million guaranteed.


Falcons: Signed veteran safety Lawyer Milloy to a three-year deal. Milloy was cut earlier this month by Buffalo.

Ravens: Running back Musa Smith signed his low restricted tender of $712,000.

Packers: Signed former St. Louis defensive tackle Ryan Pickett, and had kicker Adam Vinatieri in town for a visit. Vinatieri had been the Patriots' franchise player for two straight seasons.

Saints: Signed former Minnesota running back Michael Bennett as insurance for Deuce McAllister, who injured a knee last season.