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Saints release LB Danny Clark, sign veteran OL Jordan Black

The New Orleans Saints waived linebacker Danny Clark and signed free agent offensive tackle Jordan Black, the team confirmed Wednesday.

The 34-year old Clark is the odd man out in a hot competition for roster spots at the linebacker spots after compiling 59 tackles for the Saints in 2010. His release ends his second stint with New Orleans (the 2006 and 2010 seasons).

Free agent addition Will Herring and the apparent return to health of clint Ingram doomed the 12 year veteran's chances of keeping his place on the team at strongside linebacker. The race is on to see who lines up next to middle linebacker Jonathan Vilma this season.

Clark (6-2, 245) also faced uphill odds of staying on the squad with two fellow University of Illinois products, rookie Martez Wilson and Nate Bussey, expected to stake claims to places on the 53-man regular season roster.

Black (6-5, 305) was released by Jacksonville in February after starting nine games last season but was essentially a reserve with the Jaguars since joining the team late in 2008. Drafted by Kansas City out of Notre Dame in 2003, Black, 31, is much better suited to right tackle, where starter Jon Stinchcomb is dealing a sore knee. Zach Streif is the primary backup behind Stinchcomb.

Alex Barron, a former NFL first rounder, and Charles Brown, a second rounder, are battling for backup spots primarily at left tackle behind re-signed starter Jermon Bushrod. The latter is still recovering from offseason knee surgery and has looked a bit sluggish since returning to practice this preseason.

The Saints are at the maximum number of 90 players on their training camp roster.

WEDNESDAY PRACTICE NOTES

INJURIES: RB Chris Ivory, CB Tracy Porter and DE Greg Romeus remain out because of failed physicals. Not practicing Wednesday were LB Ezra Butler (hamstring), WR Marques Colston (knee), WR Jerrod Fayson (ankle), WR Adrian Arrington (ankle), LB Ramon Humber (quad), T Jon Stinchcomb (knee), OL Roger Allen (knee) and T Alex Barron (knee).

PLAYS OF THE DAY: The Saints introduced the two-minute drill at Wednesday’s practice, and with the No. 1 units working against each other, Drew Brees’ pass was batted in the air by DE Alex Brown. Brees caught the rebound and went around the left side for a substantial gain. On the next play, Brees found Jimmy Graham, who out-leaped defenders Patrick Robinson and Leigh Torrence for the touchdown.

SPECIAL TEAMS: The team had a significant emphasis on all of its specialty units Wednesday. Garrett Hartley was perfect on six field-goal tries from various distances and hashmarks. Both Darren Sproles and Lance Moore were returning punts.

 

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