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2009 Packer Free Agents

The 2008 season's over. Let's start speculating about 2009! Free agency comes first. It begins on February 27th. The first order of business; take care of your own free agents. Who should the Packers keep? The following is a combined list based on info from KFFL and Ask The Commish:

Player Name Position FA Status
Mike Montgomery DE/DT UFA
Mark Tauscher RT UFA
Atari Bigby S RFA
Jarrett Bush CB RFA
Jason Hunter DE RFA
Shaun Bodiford WR RFA
J.J. Jansen LS ERFA
Tramon Williams CB ERFA

UFA=Unrestricted Free Agent.

RFA=Restricted Free Agent.

ERFA=Exclusive Rights Free Agent.

Actually, the KFFL list is questionable. They listed a couple guys I've never heard of who are definitely not on the current roster, and they also included LB Brady Poppinga who signed a 5 year extension a few months ago. Also, they listed DE/DT Mike Montgomery and that's the only time I've seen his name mentioned anywhere.

Montgomery is someone I've been neglecting when discussing the switch to the 3-4. I've never been a big fan of his, but after DE Cullen Jenkins was lost for the season and DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila was released, Montgomery got some playing time and several starts at right DE. He ended up playing the best football of his career over the last nine games in 2008. And as someone who was asked to bulk up last season to play more inside at tackle, he has the size play end in a 3-4. Hopefully the KFFL list is wrong and he's not a unrestricted free agent yet. Then we can see how he plays in 2009 in a 3-4 before deciding whether he should stay.

Otherwise, RT Mark Tauscher is the big name on the list. But since he blew out his knee in December, I'm not sure he'll even be 100% by week 1. Hopefully he is resigned, but hopefully on a 1 year contract to prove he's healthy (think RB Ahman Green after the 2005 season).

I doubt any team will make an offer to S Atari Bigby after his injury plagued 2008 season, so he should return. But if someone did go after him, then it could be a tough choice depending on the size of the contract. CB Jarrett Bush seemed to commit a special teams penalty every week, and he lost his job as the nickel CB to CB Tramon Williams last preseason, so it wouldn't be a big loss if he isn't offered a new contract. DE Jason Hunter is always the lowest paid guy on the roster, but he's managed to keep a NFL roster spot the last two seasons, so he should be back. WR Shaun Bodiford was on I.R. for all of 2008 and I don't expect he'll be offered a contract.

LS J.J. Jansen barely played before he got hurt, but he could get offered a contract to provide some competition in camp. CB Tramon Williams isn't going anywhere.