Green Bay Packers Sign Phillip Merling, Release Nick Hill: Fan’s Take

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The Green Bay Packers completed a few roster moves on May 23, 2012. The Packers signed former Miami Dolphins defensive lineman Phillip Merling to a one-year deal. They also released former Arena Football League quarterback Nick Hill and tight end Cameron Ford.

The release of Hill was expected. The Packers drafted University of Tennessee-Chattanooga quarterback B.J. Coleman in the seventh round of the 2012 NFL Draft. They've spent the past two seasons grooming Graham Harrell for the No. 2 quarterback job. Aaron Rodgers obviously isn't heading anywhere. Packers head coach Mike McCarthy normally keeps two quarterbacks on the active roster and one quarterback on the practice squad. Harrell and Coleman should receive more snaps in training camp as they won't be split amongst four quarterbacks.

The Dolphins drafted Merling with the first pick in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft. Merling has spent his first four seasons with the Dolphins. Merling has 66 tackles, 3.5 sacks and a 25-yard interception return for a touchdown during a four-year career with the Dolphins. He has experience in a 3-4 defense.

I'm not expecting Merling to be more than a body for training camp. The 27-year-old defensive lineman has recorded only seven tackles with no sacks since 2009. Merling was also formally charged with felony battery against his girlfriend in 2010. Those charges were dropped. There are concerns about his health as he tore his Achilles tendon in 2010.

I'm surprised about the signings and re-signings of some players. Erik Walden, Anthony Hargrove and Merling have all had off-field trouble within the past couple of seasons. General manager Ted Thompson has still pursued them. I don't expect any of them to survive preseason cuts unless they dominate during training camp and preseason.

These moves come just one day after Donald Driver was crowned as the 'Dancing With The Stars' champion for Season 14. It's hard to imagine him getting cut in the next few months. I'd understand if they do it but I hope they don't. He's still one of the top-five wide receivers on the roster.

The preseason is fewer than three months away. There should be plenty of competition for jobs on the entire defense.

Joshua Huffman grew up in Michigan's Upper Peninsula as a Green Bay Packers and Chicago Cubs enthusiast. He immediately gained an admiration for Cubs fans after watching numerous games on WGN during the mid-90s. His favorite Cubs moment was Kerry Wood's(notes) 1-hitter, 20K extravaganza that was only denied of a no-hitter by Kevin Orie's defensive blunder. As a Packers and Cubs fan, he suffered through Steve Bartman and "4th & 26" in a span of three months. He can be found on Twitter HERE.

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