Seventh-round pick signs

The Green Bay Packers Monday signed offensive lineman William Whitticker, the club's second of two selections in the seventh round of the 2005 NFL Draft.

Whitticker is the second Packers draft choice to sign a contract. The club signed guard/center Junius Coston (fifth round) May 16.

Whitticker practiced mainly at right guard in the recent June minicamp, but the Packers feel that he can also play right tackle. Whitticker likely will remain at guard as Green Bay tries to make up for the free agency losses of veteran guards Marco Rivera and Mike Wahle.

A four-year letterman (2001-2004), he was a three-year starter for Michigan State University (2001-02, '04). Whitticker started as a freshman and sophomore, but was relegated to reserve duty in 2003. Determined to get back on the field, he worked long and hard in the weight room prior to 2004 and it showed on the field. Whitticker saw action in 48 games, starting 31 at right guard. He had 222 pancake blocks as a Spartan.

Whittaker recorded 139 knockdowns in his first three seasons with the team. His 2004 total was a very impressive team-high 83 knockdown blocks. He is a durable athlete who missed only one game due to injuries during his career.

Packers rookies are scheduled to report for training camp July 25 and practice for the first time July 26.

The two preseason roster reduction dates, mandated by the NFL, are Aug. 30 (to 65 players) and Sept. 3 (to 53 players).


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