Rumor mill has Freeman on the front burner

Once a Packer, always a Packer? That may be the case with wide receiver Antonio Freeman, whose name popped up on the Packers' radar screen after starting WRs Donald Driver and Robert Ferguson went down with injuries in Sunday's loss to the Minnesota Vikings at Lambeau Field.<p>

Freeman, who is out of football after a one-year stint with the Philadelphia Eagles, said he would be interested in a return to Green Bay if the Packers come calling, according to a broadcast report on Milwaukee's WISN-TV. Freeman was reached at his Baltimore home for comment, according to the report.

It's likely the Packers will be shopping for a receiver. Driver and Ferguson went down within moments of eachother in the fouth quarter Sunday. Driver had to be taken from the game on a stretcher after he fell from a high jumping catch attempt and landed awkwardly on his head, neck and shoulder with 8:40 remaining in the game. Later in the same drive, Ferguson limped off the field after taking a reception from Brett Favre to the goal line. Minnesota's Ken Irvin grabbed Ferguson's right leg during the tackle, and Ferguson suffered ligament tears in his ankle and knee.

It is not known how long the Packers will be without the services of either receiver. Driver is expected to be released from Green Bay's Bellin Hospital today. He had full feeling and function in his limbs, according to coach Mike Sherman, but was kept overnight for observation and more tests were to be peformed after swelling around his spinal cord subsided.

Although Driver's injury was decidedly more frightening, Ferguson's is likely to keep him out longer. More information will be available on both injuries later today and Tuesday.

Freeman played seven season in Green Bay, catching 417 passes for 6,510 yards and 57 touchdowns.His best season was 1998 when he led the NFL in receiving yardage with 1,424 yards on his career-high 84 catches and 14 touchdowns. In 2001, his last season with the Packers, Freeman had 52 catches for 818 yards and six touchdowns.

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