Packers News: Raiders sign Brandian Ross from practice squad

Former Packers CB Brandian Ross

Former Packers CB Brandian Ross

When the Packers’ 53-man roster was released, one of the surprising “keeps” was cornerback Brandian Ross.

A second-year undrafted player out of Youngstown State, Ross put together a solid training camp and impressed the coaching staff enough to keep him on the roster as the 11th member of the secondary. However, he only lasted one week on the 53-man roster, as he was demoted to the practice squad once outside linebacker Erik Walden was reinstated by the league.

Following Walden’s reinstatement, Ross cleared waivers, which allowed the Packers to bring him back to the practice squad on Sept. 12.

Ross will join Reggie McKenzie and former Packer cornerback Pat Lee in a beat up Raiders’ secondary. Buried on the depth chart with the Packers, Ross will surely have a better opportunity at playing time in Oakland. With starters Ron Bartell and Shawtae Spencer both out with injuries, Lee and Joselio Hanson are slotted to start for the Raiders this week against the pass-happy Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Packers now have an opening on their practice squad, which currently features just one defensive player in lineman Lawrence Guy. No news has been released as to who the Packers will sign to fill Ross’s spot, but it’d be surprising if they left Guy as the only defensive player on their eight-man practice squad.

On the other hand, the Minnesota Vikings just waived wide receiver Tori Gurley from the practice squad to clear up space to sign offensive tackle Troy Kropog. But the Packers already have six wide receivers on the 53-man roster and Diondre Borel on the practice squad, so if they add gurley, Gurley would be No. 8 for the Packers.

Stay tuned for updates on Packers roster moves.


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Marques is a Journalism student, serving as the Sports Editor of UW-Green Bay\'s campus newspaper The Fourth Estate and a Packers writer at Jersey Al\'s AllGBP.com. Follow Marques on Twitter @MJEversoll.




Packers make room for LB Walden, cut CB Ross

Packers LB Erik Walden

Packers LB Erik Walden

As the Packers turn the page on Erik Walden’s one-game suspension, they’ve cut cornerback Brandian Ross to clear room for the 27 year-old linebacker.

Ross was inactive for Sunday’s game against the 49ers, but the Packers will likely try and keep him around to the practice squad. Teams have 24 hours to put in a claim for Ross before he’s eligible for the Packers to bring him back.

Walden will provide depth to the outside linebacker position behind starters Clay Matthews and Nick Perry. Matthews was one of just a few bright spots on Sunday, racking up 2.5 sacks–nearly half of last season’s total of six.

Ross was a surprise inclusion on the 53-man roster, so it makes sense that he’s been released to free up a roster spot for Walden.

While it remains highly unlikely that Walden will solve all of the Packers problems defensively, his return will be a welcome addition to the team craving a win over the Chicago Bears on Thursday. The best game of Walden’s career came against the Bears in the regular season finale of the 2010 season, recording 12 total tackles and sacking Jay Cutler three times.


Follow @MJEversoll

Marques is a Journalism student, serving as the Sports Editor of UW-Green Bay\'s campus newspaper The Fourth Estate and a Packers writer at Jersey Al\'s AllGBP.com. Follow Marques on Twitter @MJEversoll.




Packers LB Terrell Manning Battled Health Issues Throughout Camp

Packers LB Terrell Manning

Packers LB Terrell Manning

Packers rookie linebacker Terrell Manning had a mysteriously quiet training camp.

Although Manning was just a fifth-round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, many draft experts had drafted rated much higher than where he ultimately came off the board–ESPN tabbed Manning the tenth-best outside linebacker of the 2012 draft class.

Fast forward to the summer, Manning was buried behind D.J. Smith and Robert Francois on the depth chart and starving for an opportunity to showcase his abilities. When starting linebacker Desmond Bishop suffered a season-ending injury in the team’s first preseason game in San Diego, the door opened for Manning to step into the spotlight.

But the former North Carolina State standout continued to hide in the shadows.

And as Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay-Press Gazette points out–Manning was battling more than just his fellow linebackers this summer:

His problems began the first week of training camp, and the Packers’ medical staff quickly realized this was no ordinary stomach flu or food poisoning. The 6-foot-2, 237-pound Manning was tested for everything from Crohn’s disease to cancer before he was diagnosed with a parasite that caused colitis, an inflammation of the large intestine.

Manning says at one point during training camp, he weight as little as 220 pounds–which is less than the average weight of the Packers’ top four running backs. However, the rookie linebacker refused to use his health as an excuse to sit out of practice, as he was on the field for all 21 training camp practices and all four preseason games.

Now that Bishop is out of the picture for 2012, the Packers will lean on Smith and A.J. Hawk as their starting inside linebackers. But behind them, Manning is competing with Francois and Jamari Lattimore as the Packers’ top reserves in the middle of their 3-4 scheme.

It remains to be seen what a healthy Manning is capable of accomplishing in a Packers uniform, but after what he endured throughout his first training camp, his competitiveness cannot be called into question.

If you haven’t yet read Demovsky’s article about Manning and his mysterious health condition, you really should. If you’re a fan of the Packers, it’s definitely worth a few minutes of your time.



Your 2012 Green Bay Packers: Initial 53-Man Roster

The official 2012 Green Bay Packers 53-man roster has been announced. Without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, we present to you, your 2012 Green Bay Packers!


# Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Age Exp. College
6 Harrell, Graham QB 6-2 215 27 1 Texas Tech
12 Rodgers, Aaron QB 6-2 225 28 8 California
32 Benson, Cedric RB 5-11 227 29 8 Texas
20 Green, Alex RB 6-0 225 24 2 Hawaii
33 Saine, Brandon RB 5-11 220 23 2 Ohio State
44 Starks, James RB 6-2 218 26 3 Buffalo
30 Kuhn, John FB 6-0 250 29 7 Shippensburg
83 Crabtree, Tom TE 6-4 245 26 3 Miami (Ohio)
88 Finley, Jermichael TE 6-5 247 25 5 Texas
82 Taylor, Ryan TE 6-3 254 24 2 North Carolina
84 Williams, D.J. TE 6-2 245 23 2 Arkansas
11 Boykin, Jarrett WR 6-2 218 22 R Virginia Tech
18 Cobb, Randall WR 5-10 192 21 2 Kentucky
80 Driver, Donald WR 6-0 194 37 14 Alcorn State
85 Jennings, Greg WR 5-11 198 28 7 Western Michigan
89 Jones, James WR 6-1 208 28 6 San Jose State
87 Nelson, Jordy WR 6-3 217 27 5 Kansas State
63 Saturday, Jeff C 6-2 295 37 14 North Carolina
62 Dietrich-Smith, Evan C/G 6-2 308 26 3 Idaho State
67 Barclay, Don G 6-4 305 23 R West Virginia
70 Lang, T.J. G 6-4 318 24 4 Eastern Michigan
71 Sitton, Josh G 6-3 318 26 5 Central Florida
75 Bulaga, Bryan T 6-5 314 23 3 Iowa
74 Newhouse, Marshall T 6-4 319 23 3 Texas Christian
76 Daniels, Mike DT 6-0 294 23 R Iowa
79 Pickett, Ryan DT 6-2 338 32 12 Ohio State
90 Raji, B.J. DT 6-2 337 26 4 Boston College
69 Merling, Phillip DE 6-5 315 27 5 Clemson


Thomas Hobbes: My Initial Packers 53-man Roster Prediction

Well here we go again, last year I was completely off and I don’t expect to be much different this year.  I have however thought a lot about the rationale for creating a NFL roster and I came up with these ideas a couple weeks ago, which I’ll try to use as my baseline rules.

Offense – 24 players

Quarterback (2): Aaron Rodgers, Graham Harrell

Rodgers is obviously a lock and I almost think it’s too late for a backup quarterback switch.  I know some people have been speculating that the Browns will drop the price for Colt McCoy and Thompson will trade for him, but my assumption is that the Brown’s asking price is way too high at the moment (since as far as I can tell no team has been in serious talks with the Browns), and chances are good Thompson will get outbid by some other team if the price does indeed drop into a competitive offer, so I suspect McCoy goes somewhere else and Harrell remains the backup quarterback.

Running Back (5): James Starks, John Kuhn, Cedric Benson, Alex Green, Brandon Saine

I’ve put Starks still as the lead runner, as I think Benson needs more than one good outing to take the pole position in my opinion; but really that might be a moot point if Starks can’t get on the field.  I think Brandon Saine’s spot really depends on the health and performance of Alex Green; if the Packers believe that Green is healthy and productive enough after his ACL injury that he can manage the 3rd down back role by himself (with help from Kuhn), then Saine might be expendable, but personally I think was quietly becoming a very decent pass blocker, which the Packers highly covet.  Kuhn rounds out the group as the sole fullback.

Tight Ends (4): Jermichael Finley, Tom Crabtree, DJ Williams, Ryan Taylor

Nothing really interesting with the tight ends, Finley obviously leads the group, with Crabtree, Williams and Taylor all sort of in a mix for the backup position.  Each has their own strengths, Crabtree and Taylor can operate as a fullback and Williams is capable of playing the “move” tight end or H-back, and all three contribute on special teams.  It will be interesting to see what they do when Andrew Quarless returns (if he does at all, as they may choose to just shut him down for the entire year), my suspicions would be that they add Quarless back by stealing a spot from another position.



Green Bay Packers 2012 Roster Cuts

Green Bay Packers Roster Cuts Announcements

The Turk visited the Green Bay Packers today

4PM EST today is the deadline for the Green Bay Packers to pare their roster down to 75 players. Here are the cuts and/or roster moves as we hear them:

Jarius Wynn – Reported by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. This isn’t the first time Wynn has been cut by the Packers. Wynn was a sixth round pick for the Packers in 2009 and surprisingly made the team that season. The next year he was cut and then brought back onto the practice squad when Justin Harrell went down again and then eventually onto the 53-man roster. Wynn played in every game last season, even starting four. But DL improvement was obviously a priority for the Packers this year with all the new additions, so the handwriting was on the wall for Wynn. Evidently, he didn’t do enough this camp to keep his spot.

Jon Hoese – The former Minnesota fullback was sidelined for much of training camp with injuries, and the team ultimately cut him Monday afternoon. Reserve fullback Nic Cooper was a much better runner than Hoese, which made the Packers’ decision relatively easy.

DeMarco CosbyPlaced on Injured Reserve. The tight end from Central Missouri had a very brief stint with the Packers and was never a serious threat to make the roster. He was consistently outperformed by fellow tight end Brandon Bostick–whom also will likely not make the 53-man roster.

Ray DominguezPlaced on Injured Reserve. Dominguez spent the final 11 games of last season on the Packers’ practice squad, but he will not see the field this season after being placed on the season-ending I.R. A four-time letter winner at Arkansas, Dominguez showed promise when he was on the field–but he was sidelined for much of training camp due to injury.

Shaky SmithsonPlaced on Injured Reserve. After joining the Packers as an undrafted free agent last season, Smithson was placed on I.R. for the second consecutive season. A solid return man and mediocre receiver, Smithson would have had to blow the Packers away with his return ability in order to make the 53-man roster. That was a longshot.



NFL Practice Squad Rules: An Explanation in Plain English

NFL CBA Practice Squad Rules & Eligibility

NFL CBA: Practice Squad Rules & Eligibility

As NFL teams prepare to cut down their rosters, an important element for NFL GMs is intelligent use of the 8-man practice squad. Eligibility rules for practice squads can be pretty confusing, so here is something to help. In plain English, here is an explanation of (eligibility and signing) NFL practice squad rules.


Accrued Season:

A player earns an Accrued Season if he is on the team’s 53-man roster, Injured Reserve (IR), or Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) for 6 or more games in any one season. Players on practice squad or PUP / non-football related injury list do not accrue an NFL season.

Practice Squad:

a) If a player has been on a team’s practice squad for three regular season or playoff games during their first or second year on the practice squad, that counts as a season on the Practice Squad.
b) If a player has been on a team’s practice squad for one regular season or playoff game during their third year on the practice squad, that counts as a season on the Practice Squad.
c) a bye week counts as a week on the practice squad as long as the player remains on the practice squad for the entire bye weekend.

Players can be on the practice squad a maximum of three years, but certain conditions must apply to allow a third year.

Eligibility for players in their first or second year in the NFL:

Players who do not have an accrued season in the NFL (in other words, rookies are automatically eligible).
Players with one year NFL experience who were active for less that nine regular season games.

Eligibility for players in their third year in the NFL:

They have to meet the requirements above, plus, their team has to have at least 53 players on it’s roster for the entire time he is on the practice squad. (I imagine this means if a team releases a player during the week and decided not to replace him on the roster, any 3rd year practice squad players would no longer be eligible.)

Signing with other clubs: