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Packers "Very Close" to Re-Signing LB Robert Francois

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Packers "Very Close" to Re-Signing LB Robert Francois

Photo: Corey Behnke, CheeseheadTV

Contrary to popular belief, Packers general manager Ted Thompson still has a pulse.

According to Tyler Dunne of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Thompson and the Packers are on the verge of their first move of free agency: the re-signing of linebacker Robert Francois.

Noel LaMontagne, Francois' agent, told Dunne that a deal has yet to be finalized, but the completion is only a matter of "dotting the i's and crossing the t's."

Francois, who turns 28 in May, did not receive a restricted free-agent tender from the Packers and became free to sign with any team on March 12. Unwilling to spend the $1.323 million price tag for the low tender on Francois, Thompson rolled the dice that he could get one of his core special teamers back at a deal better suited for both sides.

One could expect Francois' new deal to be more than one year, and at a price lower than the $1.323 million.

Francois played in all 16 games in 2012 and made 13 tackles, all on special teams. He did not play a defensive snap. From 2010-2011, Francois played in 19 games and made three starts at inside linebacker.

Zach Kruse is a 24-year-old sports writer who contributes to Cheesehead TV, Bleacher Report and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He also covers prep sports for the Dunn Co. News. You can reach him on Twitter @zachkruse2 or by email at [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (26) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Irish_Cheesehead's picture

FINALLY a big name free agent signing! Woo hoo!

I bleed Green More's picture

Yeah I thought this would never happen.

trvs's picture

Certainly not the most exciting news, but a solid special teams player who adds depth. You really can't expect much more from Ted at this point.

cow42's picture

MASTER PLAN (how to get the Packers back to the promised land)

STEP 1: sign Kevin Hughes
STEP 2: release Charles Woodson
STEP 3: release Jeff Saturday
STEP 4: attend combine
STEP 5: tender EDS
STEP 6: tender Shields
STEP 7: hire Alonzo Dotson
STEP 8: resign Francois

Sure hope STEPS 9+ are a bit more exciting.

Derty Ernie's picture

Oh didn't you get the memo. The draft. The draft. Its all about the draft. One problem, the Lions, Vikes and Bears also get to draft. Oh, and they all have the early picks where the top players are, right Ted.

Stroh's picture

Just like in '05 when the vikes had 2 picks ahead of the Packers? Yeah... They got Troy Williamson and Erasmus James. You remember those 2 great players don't you? And Thompson only got Aaron Rodgers! No wonder the vikes, bears and lions have to sign all those FA. THey draft like CRAP!

FITZCORE 1252'S EVO's picture

Wow! Maybe day 4 of FA will bring us an update on your FA tracker!!! Aaaahaha, Green Bay... FA tracker...


PackerBacker's picture

I think I heard we were "very close" to signing a certain running back too, weren't we? Rumors suck.

Lou's picture

This kid just levels people on special teams, that is what has kept him in the league, I am still puzzled about why he did not get even one opportunity on defense last year after showing toughness, instinct, and good hands (2 interceptions) playing in place of Hawk (highest paid LB in history per turnover play) in 2011. Of course Bishop should have been starting over Hawk since he got there so I guess it is not a surprise.

mudduckcheesehead's picture

Yup. Love watching Francois play. The man's got a little nasty in his game - something our team desperately needs. I'd love to see him get some snaps on D.

Irish_Cheesehead's picture

Nothing against Francois. Good backup and special teams guy. Starter? Naw.

pooch's picture

OMG a BIGGG signing cant wait to reign in the Super Bowl next year....Cliff Avril to Seattle, are you kidding me? We need d lineman left and right and we pass frikin crazy.Lets draft and develope and by the time we develope might as well look for new QB.

cow42's picture

were, exactly, would avril play in a 3/4?

pooch's picture

Replace Mike Neal

Evan's picture

Neal has like 40 pounds on Avril..

cow42's picture

um............ no.

pooch's picture

Ah lets see,our d lineman selected for 3-4 cant pressure qb,cant stop run...see thats working real well

pooch's picture

Cut Kuhn signed Michael Turner play him at fullback/halfback so just maybe we could convert 3rd and 1 or 4th and 1 the most feared predictament for our offense

Evan's picture

Michael Turner?!?!'re in timeout.

pooch's picture

You would rather pay 2.5 million to fullback that when he takes his 1st step forward the opossing defensive swallows him up to 2 yards behind line because he so explosive on the snap

Evan's picture

No. But I wouldn't replace him with a slow RB who brings nothing to the passing game.

Please, stop naming players. You don't know what you're talking about.

Irish_Cheesehead's picture

I'd rather see us sign a good OL. Tired of seeing Rodgers on his back.

pooch's picture

They need serious running threat and d help.Is Harris answer or flash in the pan ? I tandem of him and Jackson would have taken a load off o line.Might take opossing D Take the out of 2cover deep

pooch's picture

They need serious running threat and d help.Is Harris answer or flash in the pan ? A of tandem of him and Jackson would have taken a load off o line.Might take opossing D Take the out of 2cover deep

morgan mundane's picture

If Rogers thought last year, by the way he broke the record for most times sacked, was bad wait till he see's the new lions pass rush.
Were again in hope and pray mode this year: can Belaga come back from hip injury? What if anything can Sherrod bring, missing two whole seasons and he wasn't that great when healthy, the O line still in disarray and we may lose our only center in two weeks.

You can't tell me that Rogers agent isn't filling his ear with all this and suggesting he may want to just play out the 1 1/2 years on his contract and see what kind of team he is surrounded by.

If he doesn't like what he see's it could be adious time. He'll get the big money then.
Victor Cruz is doing just that. Staying with the Giants for one year and then going for the big bucks rather than sign now for lesser money.

Ditto Mathews. At some point he looks around and see's all the improvements on the NFC rivals and the lack of players around him and realizes he is doing all the work. Hey that don't last long when your getting older.

Derty Ernie's picture

I hear we talked Hawk into taking less. Why? Because Hawk knows on the open market he is a nobody, not even on anyones radar as even a backup so its take less from the Pack or pack it in as a player.

Probably lose Jones to FA too in the next two weeks. The Analyst last night were saying the restricted free agency market will start to heat up next week and then for the next two and people will be giving up draft picks for the better players. Maybe Jones is one of them. EDS? Shields? We lose all of them and you can pretty much consider the Pack a rebuilding team and a three to four year project team.

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