Tight end Johnson agrees to one-year deal to return to Saints

NEW ORLEANS -- Tight end Eric Johnson agreed to a one-year contract to return to the New Orleans Saints on Monday.

Johnson's agent, Steve Baker, confirmed the length of the agreement but did not disclose financial terms.

"Eric feels that the Saints' offense is a perfect fit for him," Baker said.

Johnson played 14 games for New Orleans last season, starting 12, and caught 48 passes for 378 yards and two touchdowns. He was 11th in catches among NFL tight ends.

Johnson played receiver at Yale before switching to tight end in the NFL and led San Francisco in receiving yards in 2004, when he had 82 catches for 825 yards, including a pair of touchdowns.

However, he missed all of 2005 with a torn foot muscle. In 2006, he had to compete for playing time with the 49ers' top draft choice, Vernon Davis, and then missed the last three games of the season with a strained knee.

Bringing back Johnson gives the Saints three proven tight ends. Last week, New Orleans re-signed eight-year veteran Billy Miller, who had 27 catches for 328 yards and two touchdowns last season. Nine-year veteran Mark Campbell, who spent last season on injured reserve, also is expected to return.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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