The Denver Broncos on Sunday signed unrestricted free-agent running back Correll Buckhalter and unrestricted free-agent wide receiver Jabar Gaffney, it was announced. As per club policy, terms of the deals were not disclosed.
Buckhalter (6-foot-0, 217 pounds) is a ninth-year player who spent his first eight professional seasons with Philadelphia, which selected him in the fourth round (121st overall) of the 2001 NFL Draft from the University of Nebraska. He has played in 74 career regular-season games (16 starts), totaling 476 rushes for 2,155 yards (4.5 avg.) with 18 touchdowns along with 85 receptions for 930 yards (10.9 avg.) with four scores.
The running back, who owns four career 100-yard rushing games, also has returned 39 career kickoffs in the regular season for 840 yards (21.5 avg.). In 10 career postseason games, Buckhalter has posted 58 rushes for 240 yards (4.1 avg.) with one touchdown and 13 catches for 99 yards (7.6 avg.).
Buckhalter’s 4.5-yard career rushing average ranks third in Eagles history among running backs with at least 450 carries. During the last two seasons, he has averaged 4.9 yards per carry (138-682) for the ninth-best mark in the NFL among players with at least 125 carries.
In 2008, Buckhalter played 14 games (2 starts) for Philadelphia and registered 76 rushes for 369 yards (4.9 avg.) with two touchdowns along with a career-high 26 receptions for 324 yards (12.5 avg.) with two scores. He averaged a career-best 5.0 yards per carry (62-313) and had four rushing touchdowns a year earlier in 14 games (2 starts) for the Eagles in 2007.
Buckhalter’s 586 yards (126 carries, 4.5 avg.) in 2001 were a career high and represented an Eagles rookie record. His eight rushing scores in 2003 tied for the fifth-highest total in the NFC, and he finished that year with 542 yards on 126 carries (4.3 avg.).
At Nebraska, Buckhalter appeared in 46 games and finished his collegiate career ranked eighth in school history in rushing yards (2,522). He attended Collins High School in Collins, Miss., and was born on Oct. 6, 1978.
Gaffney (6-foot-1, 200 pounds) is an eighth-year player who joins the Broncos after playing for New England (2006-08) and Houston (2002-05). He entered the NFL with the Texans in 2002 as a second-round (33rd overall) draft choice from the University of Florida.
In 107 career regular-season games (70 starts), Gaffney has totaled 256 receptions for 3,068 yards (12.0 avg.) with 15 touchdowns. He also has appeared in six career postseason games (4 starts) and has made 25 catches for 282 yards (11.3 avg.) with three scores in those contests.
Gaffney has appeared in all 16 games during six of his seven professional seasons. He owns 14 games with at least 80 receiving yards, including four 100-yard performances, for his career.
In 2008, Gaffney saw time in 16 games (7 starts) for the Patriots and posted 38 receptions for 468 yards (12.3 avg.) with two touchdowns. He registered a career-best five receiving touchdowns and had 36 catches for 468 yards (12.3 avg.) for New England in 2007, appearing in every game (8 total starts) and helping the club to the first 16-0 regular-season record in NFL history en route to advancing to Super Bowl XLII.
During the Patriots’ playoff run in 2006, Gaffney became the first player in league annals to post back-to-back 8-catch, 100-yard receiving efforts in the postseason. He had eight receptions for 104 yards against the Jets (1/7/07) in an AFC Wild Card Game before adding 10 catches for 103 yards against the Chargers (1/14/07) in an AFC Divisional Playoff Game.
Gaffney started at least 10 games in each of his first four NFL seasons (2002-05) with the Texans. He had a career-high 55 catches (492 yards, 2 TDs) for Houston in 2005 after registering a personal-best 632 receiving yards (41 catches, 2 TDs) for the club a year earlier.
A two-time All-Southeastern Conference selection at Florida, Gaffney earned consensus first-team All-America honors and was a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award (nation’s best receiver) in his final year with the Gators in 2001. He set NCAA Division I-A records for receiving yards (1,184) and touchdown receptions (14) as a redshirt freshman in 2000.
Gaffney, who attended Raines High School in Jacksonville, Fla., was born on Dec. 1, 1980.
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