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Packers sign OL Gerhard de Beer to practice squad

Did Green Bay just find a diamond in the rough?

Oregon State v Arizona Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Weeks and months of flirting with an undrafted rookie have finally resulted in the Green Bay Packers signing him. On Tuesday, Green Bay signed rookie offensive lineman Gerhard de Beer to their practice squad, according to de Beer’s agent Joe Tessler.

de Beer, a native of South Africa who played college football at the University of Arizona, took a pre-draft visit to Green Bay in April to meet with the Packers. He also had a workout with the team back in September. de Beer is an exceptional athlete whose Pro Day earned him a 9.44 out of 10 on the RAS system of overall athletic testing. Those Pro Day numbers included a 40-yard dash of 5.21 seconds, 35 reps on the bench press, and a time of 7.52 seconds in the 3-cone drill.

The only NFL action de Beer had this year was with the Buffalo Bills, who signed him as an undrafted free agent on May 1st. He was released at final cuts and immediately signed with Buffalo on their practice squad, but they released him a little over a week later and he has gone unsigned since.

The practice squad sat at nine members prior to the signing due to James Looney’s promotion to the active roster on Saturday. However, the Packers saw a pair of offensive linemen go down with injuries on Sunday night in Minnesota, as left tackle David Bakhtiari and left guard Lane Taylor both left the game. That may be a reason why the team was interested in adding a lineman at this time. Adam Pankey, a versatile lineman who can play multiple positions, is on the team’s practice squad and may be a candidate to be promoted to the active roster if additional depth is needed.