Packers Sign LB Walden

It was announced on Wednesday the Packers have signed third-year linebacker Eric Walden to their 53-man roster.

The Green Bay Packers have signed third-year linebacker Eric Walden who was recently released by the Miami Dolphins.

Walden, a 6-2 and 250 pound player from Middle Tennessee State, was originally drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the sixth round of the 2008 draft. He was released by the Cowboys in that year's final roster cutdown and then claimed by the Kansas City Chiefs with whom he played in nine games in '08 before being released and then picked up by the Dolphins.

The veteran linebacker played in 11 games with the Dolphins in '09 and two more this season before being cut following the Dolphins' loss to the New York Jets this season, in which Walden was responsible for a blocked punt. Despite the miscue, Walden is known primarily for his special teams play.

Room for Walden was made when the Packers placed defensive lineman Mike Neal and linebacker Brady Poppinga on injured reserve yesterday and also cut linebacker Maurice Simpkins. The Packers also acquired fellow linebackers Matt Wilhelm and Diyral Briggs yesterday as well, filling out the 53-man roster.

The move to add Walden may have even more to say about the status of the three players on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list, cornerback Al Harris, safety Atari Bigby and running back James Starks. Even though all three were eligible to come off the PUP list a week ago, none were activated for the Week 7 Minnesota Vikings game.

If the Packers were to activate any of the three, they would have to make additional room for them by cutting a player or placing someone on injured reserve. However, it remains possible that none of them are near ready to come back to game action yet.

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Comments (21)

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RockinRodgers's picture

October 27, 2010 at 10:50 am

We now have 46 linebackers.

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alfredomartinez's picture

October 27, 2010 at 10:51 am

he was decent in miami...

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hyperRevue's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:06 am

Goodbye Francois?

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Roy's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:14 am

I think so too.

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CSS's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:19 am

@Brian - It's not surprising they would opt out of activating guys off the PUP this week. Not that the Packers don't need them for a big game, but the Jet's new Meadowlands turf is considered dangerous.

Just a thought, but I would have reservations about activating guys coming of serious/nagging joint injuries on a turf that can't/won't give. Pure speculation on my behalf, but the Packers need Bigby/Harris for the stretch.

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hyperRevue's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:20 am

If the Pack secondary more than held their own against the Viking's passing attack without Harris and Bigby, then I feel pretty good about their chances against the Jets. It's their running game that worries me.

Save Harris and Bigby for the Cowboys game.

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hyperRevue's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:21 am

The Jets' running game, I mean. And, well, I guess the Packers' too (and offense in general) against that defense.

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CSS's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:24 am

Blitz is tough, but watch the Ravens/Jets game to see how they beat the blitz. They placed TE/RB's on both sides of the field. Rex Ryan's defense overloads one side of the field and sends the house. Baltimore had Flacco look to the overload side where one of the TE's or RB's immediately released into the void. It really cut down on the all-out overload blitzing that made the Jet's so dangerous. Smart game plan by Baltimore.

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davyjones's picture

October 27, 2010 at 12:03 pm

Ummmm--Jon Kitna?? Why not just give them til after the bye when we go to Minny?

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hyperRevue's picture

October 27, 2010 at 01:25 pm

I believe they only have 3 weeks to activate them.

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FITZCORE1252's picture

October 27, 2010 at 07:42 pm

What's up with the @? Serious question.

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CSS's picture

October 27, 2010 at 08:59 pm

Just directing a ? @ (at) Brian. Anybody can answer.

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Pack Attack's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:24 am

Why activate Harris and Bigby now? Secondary has been doing fine. Let these linebackers battle it out for a couple weeks and see who is the best of the bunch. Also, there may be some IR injuries in the next couple weeks in which case we wouldn't have to cut anyone. These are smart moves by Ted.

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jeremy's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:48 am

Yep, I'm thinking the Bigby and Harris may not even be upgrades over Shields and Peprah. Once you bring them into the 53 you can't put them back on the PUP.

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hyperRevue's picture

October 27, 2010 at 01:26 pm

Maybe not over Shields and Peprah (though I'd argue they were) but definitely upgrades over Underwood/Lee/Bush and Martin/Bush/???.

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Rick Hannah's picture

October 27, 2010 at 11:48 am

What about D-linemen? Or are the Packers going from the 3-4 to the 2-5? Or 1-6?

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DaveK's picture

October 27, 2010 at 12:03 pm

Harris not an upgrade over Shields? That is crazy talk unless Harris really hasn't recovered. Harris was a true starting CB before getting hurt. Imagine the flexibility Capers will have if Harris comes back to form. Woodson, Harris, Williams....all three can cover and that lets you send any one of them hurling towards the QB on any given play. Plus, it allows Woodson to cover the elite TE which he did at times last year or even drop and become a safety while Bigby/Collins crashes into the backfield.

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bradlage's picture

October 27, 2010 at 12:22 pm

These guys are basically getting looked at on tryout basis. If they stick great but any of them could be cut at anytime in the next two weeks.

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PackersRS's picture

October 27, 2010 at 12:26 pm

François and Montgomery are cut, Harris and Bigby come back.

Where's the big deal?

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Brooklyn81's picture

October 27, 2010 at 01:19 pm

I want to see Starks

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DAWG's picture

October 28, 2010 at 07:01 am

They brought back Hawaii 5-0, now in GB we bring you the new M*A*S*H series, seen at noon on most Sundays-this is getting weird.

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