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McKenzie's Holdout Might Be Over

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  • McKenzie's Holdout Might Be Over

    By ARNIE STAPLETON
    AP Sports Writer

    Green Bay Packers cornerback Mike McKenzie's holdout could end soon.

    "All I know is I'm meeting with Mike tomorrow at 8 o'clock," coach-general manager Mike Sherman told The Associated Press on Tuesday night.

    Sherman said he was meeting with his recalcitrant cornerback at Lambeau Field.

    Would he welcome back his best cover cornerback who has missed all offseason workouts while seeking a trade and saying he doesn't think the Packers can win under Sherman?

    "I've said time and time again over the last couple of months" that McKenzie would be welcomed back, Sherman said in a phone interview.

    Sherman reiterated there would be no adjustment in or promise to sweeten McKenzie's current contract.

    McKenzie became upset this offseason when several cornerbacks of lesser talent surpassed him in compensation. McKenzie is entering the third season of a five-year, $17.1 million contract he signed in January 2002.

    He missed a weekly paycheck of $161,000 by failing to report to the team last week.

    McKenzie's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, didn't immediately return a phone message from The AP seeking comment.

    The Packers allowed Rosenhaus, and before him Brian Parker, to shop McKenzie, and Dallas and New Orleans showed the most interest. But the team's asking price of a first-round draft pick and a starter proved too high.

    The Packers over the weekend gave cornerback Al Harris, the starter on the right side, a five-year, nearly $19 million contract extension that included more than $7 million in bonuses.

    The Packers drafted cornerbacks Ahmad Carroll and Joey Thomas with their top two picks in April.

    Veteran Michael Hawthorne started in McKenzie's left cornerback spot in the Packers' 24-14 victory over Carolina on Monday night.

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  • hori
    Agent: Freeman can talk to other teams
    by hori
    By Arnie Stapleton
    AP Sports Writer
    04/06/2002 05:10 PM




    In an unusual move, the Green Bay Packers are allowing wide receiver Antonio Freeman to speak with other teams about a trade, his agent said Saturday.

    In a letter dated April 2, the Packers gave Freeman and his agent, Joel Segal, permission for the seventh-year pro to visit other clubs, undergo physical exams and talk about contract requirements.

    ``This provides us with the opportunity to pursue other avenues while keeping lines of communication open with the Packers,'' Segal said.

    Packers coach Mike Sherman and chief negotiator Andrew Brandt didn't immediately return phone calls from The Associated Press seeking comment.

    Sherman has said he would like to keep Freeman, but not at his $4.3 million salary next season.

    Last month, Freeman, who is under contract through 2005, said he felt he had played his last game for the Packers after they traded for receiver Terry Glenn, who is hoping to resurrect his career after a troubling stay in New England.

    ``You don't go from a No. 1 to a No. 2 -- if you're going to do that, you move to another team,'' Freeman said.

    Giving Freeman permission to seek a trade could prove academic. The Packers most likely won't be able to deal him before June 1 because of salary cap constraints. However, it could be the first step in Freeman's departure from Green Bay, where he is quarterback Brett Favre's favorite target.

    If he refuses to restructure his contract, he will probably be waived after June 1, when the Packers would take a lighter blow against their 2002 cap.

    Freeman's salary cap number for next season is $5.728 million, including a $1.428 million charge for the prorated portion of the $10 million bonus he signed as part of a seven-year, $42 million contract in 1999.

    His production has slipped every year since then. Last season, his 52 receptions for 818 yards and six touchdowns marked his lowest output since his rookie season in 1995.

    Still, he is by far the Packers' best route-runner and he and Favre have formed the most prolific active touchdown tandem in the NFL, having connected for 57 TDs. Also, Freeman was Green Bay's best receiver in the postseason last year, catching 13 passes for 138 yards and three touchdowns.

    The Packers already have lost starter Bill Schroeder to Detroit and backup Corey Bradford to Houston via free agency.
    -04-07-2002, 05:10 AM
  • HUbison
    McKenzie gets his trade
    by HUbison
    Packers trade McKenzie to Saints

    By ARNIE STAPLETON, AP Sports Writer
    October 4, 2004

    GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- Mike McKenzie got his wish Monday when he was traded to the New Orleans Saints for a second-round pick in 2005 and a backup quarterback.

    ``It's time to move on,'' Packers coach-general manager Mike Sherman said.

    Since ending his holdout without retracting his trade request three weeks ago, McKenzie has been paid more than $485,000, but played just nine snaps, all against Chicago. That led fans and teammates to wonder whether he was still holding out, but getting paid anyway.

    The recalcitrant cornerback sat out the last two games with a mysterious hamstring injury. He was left home when the Packers traveled to Indianapolis two weeks ago and wasn't on the sideline Sunday when the Packers lost to the New York Giants at home.

    ``Mission accomplished,'' McKenzie's agent, Drew Rosenhaus told The Associated Press. ``It's important to relay that there's no hard feelings on Mike's behalf. He's obviously grateful they were able to work out a deal and there's certainly not going to be any backbiting or any negativity on our behalf.''

    Rosenhaus said McKenzie will play under the terms of his current contract, but he hopes to have talks with Saints general manager Mickey Loomis soon about an upgrade.

    ``(Loomis) understands the dynamics that went into Mike's situation: his contract was obviously an issue,'' Rosenhaus said. ``We hope to get that resolved; whether that happens this season or in the winter, I'm not going to make that an issue. We are certainly not going to try to squeeze the Saints right now in regard to the contract.''

    The Packers acquired quarterback J.T. O'Sullivan, 25, and the second-round selection in the 2005 draft in return for McKenzie, 28, and a future conditional draft choice. The Packers have been interested in O'Sullivan since the Saints took him in the sixth round of the 2002 draft out of Cal-Davis.

    Their interest was heightened when Brett Favre and backup Doug Pederson were injured Sunday. Favre has a mild concussion and is expected to practice this week and extend his record starting streak to 213 games, counting playoffs, against Tennessee next week. But Pederson was undergoing further tests Monday on his ribs and kidneys.

    The deal is the Packers' first midseason trade in 23 years involving active players from both teams.

    McKenzie, who is earning $2.75 million this year in the middle season of a five-year, $17.1 million deal he signed in January 2002, became upset when several cornerbacks of lesser talent surpassed him in compensation this offseason.

    McKenzie instructed agent Brian Parker to seek a contract renegotiation in February, converting a $200,000 workout bonus into two $100,000 roster bonuses due in April...
    -10-04-2004, 12:52 PM
  • Nick
    PACKERS - Sherman hopeful Rodgers joins camp soon
    by Nick
    Notebook: Sherman hopeful Rodgers will join camp soon
    By Dylan B. Tomlinson and Rob Demovsky
    PackersNews.com and PackersNews.com

    The Green Bay Packers opened their first day of full-team practices without first-round draft pick Aaron Rodgers, but there appears to be some optimism a deal may be imminent.

    Rodgers is the only one of Green Bay’s 11 draft picks who is not under contract, but coach Mike Sherman said he’s hopeful the quarterback will be in soon.

    “I’m confident we’ll get something done at some point,” Sherman said. “I don’t know when that’s going to be.”

    Contract negotiations for quarterbacks typically take longer than other players, and Rodgers is just one of several first-round picks who has yet to sign a contract. As of Friday evening, 11 first-round picks had signed, with No. 5 overall pick Carnell “Cadillac” Williams and No. 13 Jammal Brown the only players to sign between No. 1 and No. 23.

    Rodgers’ contract may be especially difficult since there is no precedent to follow. Rodgers isn’t expected to play regularly for at least two seasons, until Brett Favre retires, so it would seem unlikely that he would agree to a contract that was incentive-laden, like the five-year contract Buffalo quarterback J.P. Losman signed last year. If Losman reaches certain incentives, the contract could be worth as much as $24.58 million. Losman played minimally as a rookie, but is expected to start for the Bills this season.

    The other factor that has held up many of the first-round signings was the six-year, $49.5 million contract that No. 1 overall pick Alex Smith signed with the San Francisco *****. Smith’s contract contained $24 million in guaranteed money and is 20 percent more than Eli Manning, the No. 1 pick in 2004 received. Draft picks typically receive contracts that are worth 5 to 10 percent more than the player taken in that spot from the previous year.

    Injury report: Third-year running back Walt Williams was taken off the field on a cart with an ankle injury in the afternoon session, and Andrae Thurman injured his thumb. In the morning session, rookie linebacker Brady Poppinga injured his hamstring and could miss from one to five days, according to Sherman.

    Sherman said he will limit center Mike Flanagan, tackle Chad Clifton, defensive tackle James Lee and quarterback Brett Favre to one-a-day practices.

    Cutting ties: Wide receiver Chris Samp, a former Green Bay Preble standout, was released on Friday. The Packers filled the roster spot with Quentine Newhouse, a rookie free agent lineman from Northwestern (La.) State. He’ll wear No. 78.

    Golf buddies: Brett Favre and several of his golf-crazy teammates will film a segment for The Golf Channel next month at Oneida Golf and Country Club.

    Favre, Al Harris, Ryan Longwell, Aaron Rodgers and Mark Tauscher will take part...
    -07-30-2005, 10:53 AM
  • Nick
    Packers WR Walker coming to camp after all
    by Nick
    Walker decides to report to training camp
    'Tell everybody I'm coming in,' Packers wide receiver says at airport
    By TOM SILVERSTEIN
    [email protected]
    Posted: July 27, 2005

    Green Bay - Green Bay Packers wide receiver Javon Walker wasn't ready to discuss his reasons for arriving in town this evening for the official start of training camp, but he was willing to say this:

    "Tell them I'm coming in," Walker told a Journal Sentinel reporter as he arrived at the Green Bay airport shortly after 5 p.m. "You can tell them that."

    Up until Walker's arrival at Austin Straubel Airport, most in the Packers organization were under the impression he wasn't going to be present for the start of training camp. His agent, Drew Rosenhaus, told the Journal Sentinel a week ago that Walker would not be present when training camp started because he was unhappy with his contract.

    Thus, Walker arrived at the airport in the National Football League's smallest market virtually unnoticed. Wearing a white throwback football jersey with brown stripes on the sleeves, a No. 13 on the back and the name "Marino" embroidered across his shoulders, Walker walked through the airport alone, hired a taxi outside and, after retrieving his bags inside, took off.

    Even dressed in football garb, Walker, with a baseball cap pulled tightly over his eyes, seemed relatively inconspicuous and drew very little attention, in part because there were only a handful of people milling about the lower level of the airport.

    Before he left, Walker spoke briefly about his intention to report to camp, but declined to discuss his reasons in detail. Three times Walker was asked directly whether he intended to report to camp and each time he answered affirmatively.

    "Let them know I'm coming in," Walker said as he departed.

    Asked if there was anything else he wanted to say about his return, he said, "No, that's it. Just tell everybody I'm coming in."

    Veterans were due to report at camp at 7 p.m. for a team meeting. A team spokesman said that general manager Ted Thompson was unavailable for comment and wasn't planning on revealing which players were missing.

    The team isn't scheduled to practice again until Friday morning at 8:45, but the medical staff will be conducting physicals and the conditioning staff will be putting players through physical testing.

    Walker said he might address his situation on Thursday, but it's unclear whether the Packers will make him available to reporters. Rosenhaus, who was omnipresent in the media in the weeks leading up to training camp, did not return phone calls for a third straight day.

    The Packers have been steadfast in refusing to renegotiate Walker's contract, which has two years left on it, and there's...
    -07-27-2005, 05:27 PM
  • Nick
    AP: Packers to Release Defensive Back Charles Woodson
    by Nick
    Packers to Release Defensive Back Charles Woodson
    By LARRY LAGE AP Sports Writer
    February 15, 2013 (AP)

    Charles Woodson is on the market.

    The Green Bay Packers have informed the 36-year-old defensive back he will be released with two years left on his contract.

    NFL.com first reported the move on Friday and it was confirmed by The Associated Press with Carl Poston, Woodson's agent. The team has not commented on reports that it has decided to cut Woodson.

    "The Packers told Charles they're going in a different direction," Poston told the AP. "Charles told me he still wants to play — for a Super Bowl contender."

    Woodson signed a five-year deal before the 2010 season that was worth as much as $55 million. He missed nine games during the 2012 regular season because of a broken right collarbone and played in two postseason games for the Packers in his seventh year with the franchise.

    "We had a good run," Woodson wrote to ESPNWisconsin.com in a text message.

    Woodson was the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2009 and the Defensive Rookie of the Year in 1998. He spent the first eight years of his career with the Oakland Raiders, who drafted him out of Michigan with the No. 4 overall pick.

    He's the only player in NFL history with touchdowns off interceptions in six straight seasons, a feat he pulled off each year from 2006 to 2011, and leads the league with nine touchdowns off interceptions since 2006.

    Woodson was productive for the Packers, but they have some tough decisions to make this offseason to manage the salary cap. Woodson had a year left on his lucrative deal and linebacker A.J. Hawk is under contract next year for a team that probably wants to give long-term deals to receiver James Jones, linebacker Clay Matthews and defensive tackle B.J. Raji because each of the relatively young standouts could potentially be free agents following next season.

    The Packers clear about $10 million in cap space by releasing Woodson.

    Despite his age and recent injury, Woodson will likely be an in-demand free agent. He was injured last October, bounced back in time to defend two passes in the playoffs.

    "Charles has been a stud in this league for 15 years, so whenever he's on the field with us, he's always a huge threat," Hawk said in January. "Not only is he a threat to make huge plays throughout the game, but quarterbacks, I think they know where he's at every single play. He seems to know what receivers are running before they do. And I think he has an intimidation factor as well."

    Woodson had a career-high nine interceptions in 2009 and picked off seven passes in 2011 and made one interception in seven games during last year's injury-shortened season.

    The 1997 Heisman Trophy winner led Michigan to the 1997 national championship...
    -02-15-2013, 01:10 PM
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