Saints sign veteran OT Willis to replace injured Brown

METAIRIE, La. -- The New Orleans Saints have placed offensive tackle Charles Brown on season-ending injured reserve and signed veteran Ray Willis to take his spot on the active roster.

Brown, who started five games at right tackle in place of injured veteran Zach Strief, hurt his right hip during Sunday's loss at St. Louis.

Strief practiced Wednesday, working with the first-team offensive line, and Saints coach Sean Payton said the lineman is ready to return from his sprained right knee this Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Willis, 29, began his NFL career in 2005, but he hasn't played since 2009, when he started every game for the Seattle Seahawks. He missed all of last season with a knee injury.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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