Philadelphia Eagles bring in a third quarterback

The Philadelphia Eagles have agreed on a two-year contract with quarterback Dennis Dixon, who spent the past season with the Super Bowl-champion Baltimore Ravens on their practice squad.


The move, announced Thursday, comes three days after the Eagles restructured Michael Vick’s contract, bringing him back to compete with Nick Foles for the starting job.

Dixon, 28, had a standout career at Oregon when Chip Kelly was Ducks offensive coordinator. Kelly replaced Andy Reid as Eagles coach after leading Oregon to a 46-7 mark the past four years.

BEARS: Chicago’s defense will likely have a similar look next season, with or without Brian Urlacher.

New coach Marc Trestman and defensive coordinator Mel Tucker said the Bears will stick with a 4-3 set and won’t change much schematically with a defense that ranked among the league’s best under Lovie Smith.

The big question is whether Urlacher will be a part of it.

The eight-time Pro Bowl linebacker out of Notre Dame has an expiring contract and missed the last four games with a hamstring injury after being slowed by a knee problem.

BILLS: Are continuing their purge of veteran defensive players by releasing oft-injured cornerback Terrence McGee.

Having spent 10 seasons in Buffalo, McGee was among the Bills’ longest-serving active players. Injuries, however, began catching up to McGee who finished last season on injured reserve for the third time in four years.

ALABAMA: Coach Nick Saban has hired former Clemson defensive coordinator Kevin Steele as director of player personnel.

Saban announced the hiring of Steele to direct recruiting efforts and handle other duties Thursday. Saban also hired high school coach Kerry Stevenson as director of player development.

Steele was Clemson’s defensive coordinator from 2009-11.

He stepped down after Clemson allowed a bowl-record 70 points in an Orange Bowl loss to West Virginia.

The former Baylor head coach worked with defensive coordinator Kirby Smart as Alabama’s defensive head coach in 2007 and 2008.

Saban says Steele’s “organizational skills and people skills make him a perfect fit for this role.”

Stevenson spent the past 10 years as head coach at Vigor in Prichard, Ala., going 15-0 in 2008.

NOTRE DAME: The Irish won’t have veteran safety Jamoris Slaughter back.

The university said Thursday it had received word from the NCAA that Slaughter’s appeal for a sixth year of eligibility had been denied after he tore his left Achilles tendon in the third game of the season. The Irish had hoped Slaughter would provide a veteran presence in the secondary.

“Jamoris is a first-class young man and most importantly leaves Notre Dame with his degree,” coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. “We wish him all the best as he now pursues his dream of playing in the NFL,” he said.