Free agent tight end signs

Tight end Rufus French signed a free agent contract with the Packers on Tuesday. French spent the 1999 and 2000 seasons on the Seattle Seahawks' practice squad, and was out of football last year.<p>

French ranks second all-time at the University of Mississippi for lifetime receptions by a tight end (84). He was signed by the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted free agent April 22, 1999.

French, 24, spent the 1999 season on the Seahawks' practice squad and subsequently sat out the 2000 season after suffering a knee injury during training camp. He returned to Seattle's training camp in 2001 but failed his physical examination, was placed on waivers August 4 and spent the 2001 season out of football.

French ranked third among Division 1A tight ends as a senior with 35 receptions for 386 yards and 2 touchdowns, earning first-team All-America selection by The Sporting News and Football News. He earlier had been a consensus first-team All-America selection (Parade, USA Today, ESPN, SuperPrep and Blue Chip Illustrated) and been accorded "Mississippi Player of the Year" honors as a senior at Amory High School while helping his team post a 15-0 record and capture a 16th-place national ranking.

French is the fourth tight end on Green Bay's off-season roster. The other three include Bubba Franks, David Martin and Tyrone Davis.

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