Ex-Bear Fer­gu­son claimed

In­juries have plagued line­man

Packer Plus - - News - TOM SILVERSTEIN

Green Bay — The Chicago Bears may have given up on de­fen­sive line­man Ego Fer­gu­son, but the Green Bay Pack­ers are will­ing to give him a chance.

Two days af­ter the Bears cut Fer­gu­son, the Pack­ers claimed him on waivers, ac­cord­ing to the NFL trans­ac­tion wire.

The Pack­ers will as­sume Fer­gu­son’s $980,981 base salary for the 2017 sea­son. The fourth-year pro is in the fi­nal year of his rookie con­tract. The Pack­ers are not ob­li­gated to pay him un­less he makes the 53-man ros­ter in Septem­ber.

The 6-foot-3, 315pound Fer­gu­son played in just 20 games with one start in three sea­sons with the Bears. He hasn’t played in a game since Week 4 of the 2015 sea­son, miss­ing all of 2016 with knee and shoul­der in­juries.

A second-round pick (51st over­all) in 2014, Fer­gu­son had 23 tack­les and two sacks in 16 games his rookie sea­son. The next year, how­ever, he was ac­tive for just four games and had three tack­les.

Fer­gu­son was put on in­jured re­serve af­ter four games in 2015 and in Novem­ber of that year was sus­pended for four games for vi­o­lat­ing the NFL’s pol­icy on per­for­mance-en­hanc­ing sub­stances. He served the sus­pen­sion while on in­jured re­serve.

The Pack­ers prob­a­bly claimed Fer­gu­son just to get a look at him and see if he can help this com­ing sea­son. With hy­brid play­ers Julius Pep­pers and Da­tone Jones leav­ing in free agency and nose tackle Letroy Guion sus­pended for the first four games, the Pack­ers are not deep on the de­fen­sive line.

They did sign end Ricky Jean Fran­cois af­ter Wash­ing­ton re­leased him, but he isn’t ex­pected to be a starter. Their top three de­fen­sive line­men are Mike Daniels, Kenny Clark and Dean Lowry.

Com­ing out of LSU in ’14, Fer­gu­son ran the 40-yard dash in 5.1 sec­onds, bench-pressed 225 pounds 24 times and a ver­ti­cal jump of 29½ inches.

MIKE DE SISTI / MILWAUKEE JOUR­NAL SEN­TINEL

Ex-Bear Ego Fer­gu­son hasn’t played in a game since Week 4 of the 2015 sea­son. He had knee and shoul­der in­juries last year.

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