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saintz08 02-03-2003 09:16 AM

Free Agents - return ?
Club needs Turley back next season

By Jeff Duncan
New Orleans Times-Picayune
Speculation that the Saints will trade left tackle Kyle Turley has
ended as both sides appear committed to making it work in New Orleans. The
club plans to meet with Turley to see whether it can work out a
long-term contract and resolve the issues he has with the organization.

Getting Turley back in the fold is critical. He's the team's best
offensive lineman, and the front office wants to fill defensive needs. . . .

The team must address its quarterback situation. Backup Jake Delhomme
is an unrestricted free agent and wants to hunt for a starting job. He
is smart, accurate and experienced in the West Coast system.

If he leaves, the Saints would have just J.T. O'Sullivan and Chris
Finlen, who signed recently, to run the offense in offseason workouts
because Aaron Brooks' shoulder won't be 100 percent by then. . . .

The Saints want to re-sign punter Toby Gowin and kicker John Carney,
who are unrestricted free agents. Both are coming off strong seasons and
want to return. Gowin and Carney were big factors in the Saints' strong
special teams play this past season.

Their return, along with those of kick/punt returner Michael Lewis and
running back Fred McAfee, should ensure that the team would again rank
among the league leaders. . . .

The Saints want to sign wide receiver Joe Horn to a multiyear contract
extension. Horn has two years remaining on his current deal. He
threatened to hold out last season and will likely do again if his deal is not

The Saints would like to reward Horn, who has produced the three best
seasons by a receiver in club history.

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