Olin Kreutz signs with Saints

Olin Kreutz got to New Orleans Thursday afternoon for a visit with the Saints and liked what he saw.

It didn’t take 24 hours for the veteran center to sign a one-year contract with the team, six days after he rejected a $4 million, one-year contract from the Chicago Bears after he didn’t like the way negotiations were handled.

Kreutz joins the high-powered offense where he will replace Jonathan Goodwin, who left for the San Francisco 49ers. He got a one-year deal worth $2 million that can reach the money the Bears were offering if he hits incentives. Kreutz has missed only one regular-season game in the last 10 seasons.

It makes for an interesting Week 2 meeting between the Bears and Saints in the Superdome. Kreutz knows the ins and outs of the Bears’ defense as well and even better than some of the Bears’ defenders.

The Baltimore Ravens also made a push to sign Kreutz, but the opportunity to start was clear in New Orleans. The Ravens hope to have Matt Birk back soon after arthroscopic knee surgery.

The Bears are replacing Kreutz with Chris Spencer, a castoff from the Seattle Seahawks. But the exit of Kreutz angered players and disappointed coaches.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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