Brohm's time runs out at quarterback as decent play of late not enough to save his job

GREEN BAY -- General manager Ted Thompson hit a home run on one quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, but swung and missed on another, Brian Brohm. When Thompson used a second-round draft choice on Brohm in April 2008, there was hope that the Louisville st...

GREEN BAY -- General manager Ted Thompson hit a home run on one quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, but swung and missed on another, Brian Brohm.

When Thompson used a second-round draft choice on Brohm in April 2008, there was hope that the Louisville star with the 106.4 pro passer rating might wage a serious battle for the job with Rodgers, if not as a rookie then down the line.

On Saturday, the Green Bay Packers determined that Brohm didn't deserve a spot on their final 53-man roster. Brohm was among 18 players cut; four others were placed on injured reserve.

Through a spokesman, Thompson declined to discuss the events of the most significant day in a National Football League preseason. He agreed to take questions Sunday.

"Brohm never developed," a personnel director for another NFL team said Saturday night. "I don't think he's got a strong arm. He doesn't read coverages real fast. He's a guy who needs Europe or something."


The Packers took Brohm with the 56th selection, one slot ahead of Michigan's Chad Henne, who has performed well in his brief exposure and is the heir apparent to Chad Pennington in Miami.

Actually, Brohm showed more in the last two exhibition games and week of practice than he did in a year and a half. Still, it wasn't enough for coach Mike McCarthy, who decided to keep two quarterbacks, which he also did in 2007 for more than half the season.

"It's not even close between Brohm and (Matt) Flynn," another scout said. "Somebody will pick him up, but he doesn't have any play-making ability. He doesn't make plays. I don't think he can improvise."

Brohm ranked 69th in the NFL this summer in passer rating at 54.5. His rating was 50.8 in two exhibition seasons. The remaining $450,000 of his $900,000 signing bonus accelerates immediately onto the salary cap.

He also becomes the highest choice that Thompson has cut from his five drafts in Green Bay. Linebacker Abdul Hodge, a third-round pick in 2006 who was waived in September 2008, had been the highest.

The Packers also released six other players that saw service on their 53-man roster last season. Three other veterans went on injured reserve, automatically ending their seasons.

Among the veterans cut were wide receiver Ruvell Martin, running back Kregg Lumpkin, defensive end Alfred Malone, nose tackle Anthony Toribio, inside linebacker Danny Lansanah and cornerback Joe Porter.

Seven of the '09 draft choices made the grade, but tackle Jamon Meredith, a fifth-round pick from South Carolina, was released.


In a surprise, safety Anthony Smith, a "street" free agent who started 14 of 46 games for Pittsburgh from 2006-'08, was cut. The other "street" free agent dismissed was wide receiver Jake Allen.

Northwestern running back Tyrell Sutton, who ranked fifth in the NFL this summer with 191 yards rushing, was among eight undrafted rookies cut. The others were wide receiver Kole Heckendorf, tackle Dane Randolph, guard Andrew Hartline, nose tackle Dean Muhtadi, defensive end Ronald Talley, outside linebacker Cyril Obiozor and cornerback Trevor Ford.

Placed on injured reserve were defensive end Justin Harrell (back), cornerback Pat Lee (knee), safety Charlie Peprah (knee) and tight end Evan Moore. Despite the fact that Moore has been playing for a month, a club spokesman said Moore's injury was the damaged finger that he suffered early in camp.

All teams have until 11 a.m. Sunday to claim players from other teams. Within an hour, the NFL will award players based on the inverse order of the 2008 standings. Teams can fill out an eight-man practice squad beginning at 11.

"They might still be working on some stuff," one personnel man said. "It's hard to keep three fullbacks."

Fullbacks John Kuhn, Korey Hall and rookie Quinn Johnson are on the roster.

The decision to keep an extra fullback might have been made at the expense of Sutton, who lost out to Brandon Jackson and DeShawn Wynn for a backup job.

"Sutton will go on their practice squad," said a scout. "It's possible, not probable, that he gets claimed. I think Wynn just gives them another big back with some game experience. Sutton's solid in all phases. He's not special."


Despite his size (5-7 {, 213), Sutton never missed a day of practice and played 83 snaps in games, compared with 54 for Lumpkin, 52 for Ryan Grant, 42 for Wynn and 27 for Jackson.

"I kind of liked him a little," one scout said. "No-nonsense. Downhill runner. Falls forward. Won't break a lot of tackles. Just one of those positive, move-the-chain kind of guys. But he's a 4.69 or something."

Many factors probably decided the keen competition between Martin and Brett Swain. Martin's base salary of $1.01 million was more than three times Swain's ($310,000). Also, Martin's edge always had been his tough-guy approach to crack-back blocking and special teams, but Swain, regarded as somewhat timid as a rookie, showed far more toughness in his second season.

"God Almighty, that guy played corner the other night," one scout said. "That's athletic. And he's an OK special-teamer."

-- Copyright (c) 2009, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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