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Niners sign ex-Chiefs WR Morton

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (June 21, 2005) -- Johnnie Morton agreed to a two-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers, who finally added a veteran wideout to one of the NFL's least impressive receiving corps.

Morton, an 11-year pro, spent the past three seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs, who released him June 2 after Morton refused to take a salary cut. He spent his first eight seasons with the Detroit Lions, where he recorded four 1,000-yard campaigns.

Morton could be an immediate starter for the lowly 49ers, who parted ways with Cedrick Wilson and Curtis Conway after going 2-14 last season. Morton will join Brandon Lloyd, Arnaz Battle and tight end Eric Johnson as the top targets for Tim Rattay and No. 1 draft pick Alex Smith.

Morton has caught 603 passes for 8,431 yards and 43 touchdowns in his career.

"Johnnie is our kind of guy," 49ers coach Mike Nolan said. "He is a hardworking professional who will be a great example to our young receivers."

The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2005, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved

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