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NFL roundup

Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published January 10, 2001

Turner winds up in San Diego

SAN DIEGO -- Norv Turner, fired as coach of the Redskins last month, signed a four-year contract as offensive coordinator with the Chargers on Tuesday.

Four days earlier, the Chargers hired John Butler, the recently fired Bills general manager, as executive vice president and GM.

They have moved swiftly after an NFL-worst 1-15 record.

"For people out there wondering what we were going to do, these are two very good hires," said coach Mike Riley, who contacted Turner shortly after he was fired Dec. 4. Turner replaces Geep Chryst, who was fired after two years on the job.

Parcells calls it quits

NEW YORK -- Bill Parcells, hired to save the Jets, is leaving the franchise without a coach or general manager, and with a novice owner.

Parcells quit as director of football operations. "People don't know how consuming this job is the way I do it," Parcells, 59, said. "With the season over and now faced with hiring a new coach, I don't feel I want to do all that again."

Parcells took over the Jets in 1997 and led them to the AFC Championship Game the next year. He stepped down as coach after the 1999 season. The Jets are in the process of hiring their third coach since then.

Millen hits ground running in Detroit

PONTIAC, Mich. -- Matt Millen moved from the field to the TV booth to the executive suite. As president and CEO of the Lions, he plans to keep coach Gary Moeller and is talking to Barry Sanders about a comeback.

Millen agreed to a five-year, $15-million contract. He will have control in all football operations.

In one of his first orders of business, Millen said he spoke with Sanders last weekend. Sanders retired from the Lions in 1999 second on the NFL career rushing list.

"I had a great conversation with him, and we're going to talk again. ... If Barry Sanders would like to play, you would want to explore that," Millen said.

Millen said he would meet with Moeller, adding, "Right now, hey, Mo's the coach."

Also, Chuck Schmidt, executive vice president and a 25-year employee, resigned.

* * *

BILLS: Wade Phillips' reluctance to fire an assistant coach cost him his head coaching job. Phillips said he told owner Ralph Wilson he was willing to reassign special teams coach Ronnie Jones but not fire him. BENGALS: Defensive back/kick returner Tremain Mack faces up to a year in jail after he pleaded no contest to violating his probation. Mack was caught on videotape driving a car while his license was suspended. After his plea was accepted in a Cincinnati court, he was handcuffed and led away to begin serving his sentence. Mack was is on probation for alcohol-related arrests in 1997 and '98. He is not allowed to operate a vehicle until October 2001.

SAINTS: Mike Ditka received a settlement of more than $3-million from the team, ending a five-month dispute about the remaining 2 1/2 years on the fired coach's contract.

PRO BOWL: Titans quarterback Steve McNair will replace injured Brian Griese for the AFC.

CARRUTH TRIAL: Testimony concluded in Charlotte, N.C., in the murder trial of former Panther Rae Carruth. Closing arguments were scheduled to begin Thursday morning.

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