Panthers lineman Jordan Gross takes pay cut to stay with team

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Defensive end Osi Umenyiora, who helped lead the New York Giants to two Super Bowl titles, finalized a deal with the Atlanta Falcons on Wednesday, according to multiple media outlets.

A league source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that Umenyiora’s deal is for $8.5 million, with a max value of $12 million, including $5 million guaranteed.

Umenyiora had 43 tackles and six sacks last season.

PANTHERS: The good news for offensive tackle Jordan Gross is he’s staying with Carolina. The downside is that means having to take a pay cut.

Gross told The Associated Press that his restructured deal is worth $5.5 million in 2013 and will void out after the season, making him a free agent. That’s significantly less than the 10-year veteran was scheduled to make over the final two seasons of his previous contract. The two-time Pro Bowl selection was scheduled to earn $8.7 million this year and $6.7 million in 2014.

“The Panthers and I came to an agreement that everyone was happy with and allowed me to continue my career in Carolina,” Gross said.

PATRIOTS: Tight end Rob Gronkowski brushed off the criticism he received after he was videotaped performing a wrestling move on a friend while his arm was in a cast, saying he would never do something he thought would put his health at risk.

“They’re my fans,” Gronkowski said Wednesday in an interview on Mike and Mike in the Morning.

“They’re looking out for ... they’re big fans of the Patriots and they just want to see the team do well. I totally understand where the fans are coming [from], where they don’t want [me] to put myself in jeopardy of getting hurt. I totally understand that. I would never do that, put myself in jeopardy.

GIANTS: New York put a little more money in the Victor Cruz contract fund this week by cutting the salary of right tackle David Diehl by nearly $3.5 million.

The 11-year veteran had been scheduled to make $4.37 million.

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