LaMont Jordan, the top free-agent running back on the market, signed a five-year deal worth $27.5 million -- including a $7 million signing bonus -- on Thursday. Jordan will receive $11million in guaranteed money and $17.8 million over the first three
years of the contract, including $15.7 in bonuses.
"He's excited about the opportunity to come in and be able to contribute on a team that he feels has the ability to get to the Super Bowl," Jordan's agent, Alvin Keels, told The Associated Press Thursday. "He wants to be an important piece of that puzzle."
Jordan, 24, backed up Curtis Martin for four seasons in New York but has yearned to be a full-time player. Jordan rushed for 479 yards on 93 carries last season and owns a career average of 4.9 yards per carry. At 5-foot-10 and 230 pounds, he is the big, physical back the Raiders had sought.
Oakland rushed for only 1,295 yards on 328 carries last year.
Each week, coach Norv Turner said he was committed to improving the
Raiders' production on the ground, but they continued to struggle.
Finding a talented running back was one of the club's top
priorities this offseason. Amos Zereoue was the team's most
productive running back during the Raiders' 5-11 season, getting
425 yards on 112 carries with three TDs -- fewer yards than Jordan
produced as Martin's backup.
John Clayton is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com. Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.