Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

NFL Notebook; Voters to Tackle Miami Stadium Issue

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

NFL Notebook; Voters to Tackle Miami Stadium Issue

Article excerpt

A referendum on the proposal to upgrade the Miami Dolphins' stadium is scheduled for May 14.

Miami-Dade County commissioners voted Wednesday to put before voters a plan to use hotel taxes to help pay for nearly $400 million in improvements. The county would pay for about 30 percent of the project, which also requires approval by the Legislature.

The referendum will come eight days before league owners choose the host for the 50th Super Bowl, with Miami and San Francisco the finalists. Dolphins and NFL officials say stadium upgrades are needed to keep the city competitive in bidding for the title game.

The Dolphins seek $3 million a year from the state and an increase in county hotel taxes.

PATRIOTS SIGN DT KELLY

The New England Patriots signed former Oakland Raiders defensive lineman Tommy Kelly.

Kelly, who started all 80 games for the Raiders during the past five seasons, was released on March 27.

Since joining the Raiders as a rookie free agent out of Mississippi State in 2004, Kelly has started 117 of the 129 games in which he's played and has 34 sacks, one interception, nine forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and 419 tackles.

LOTULELEI WON'T ATTEND DRAFT

Utah's Star Lotulelei has declined an invitation to attend the NFL Draft in New York.

Lotulelei issued a statement Wednesday through his agent saying he prefers to be in Utah surrounded by family and friends when his name is called. The defensive tackle was projected by some to be the top overall pick until a medical exam during the NFL combine raised questions about his heart function.

The state of Utah will still be represented at the draft. Former Brigham Young defensive end Ezekiel "Ziggy" Ansah plans to be in New York.

Ansah's draft stock has been rising quickly. He was most outstanding player honors for the South team at the Senior Bowl and is projected as a top five pick on many draft boards. …

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