Kicker, fullback likely to move on

As the start of free agency nears, at least two of Green Bay's mainstays over the years appear headed for different teams. Neither kicker Ryan Longwell nor William Henderson have been able to strike deals with the Packers and probably won't be back in 2006.

Longwell's agent, Frank Bauer, said at the recent scouting combine that the veteran kicker is poised to explore his options in free agency after the Packers failed to make a play for re-signing their all-time leading scorer by the end of last season.

"In approaching Ryan at the end, whereas this thing should have been done a while back, hurts," Bauer said. "Clubs that identify the key player, they're going to try to get (an extension) done in October and not let him leave the building.

"Once the players leave the facility (at season's end), then it changes a little bit. It's like an old girlfriend -- out of sight, out of mind -- and now, you've got a problem. Timing is everything, and the timing on this one got screwed up."

Longwell, who turns 33 on Friday, is believed to be seeking a deal that will reward him with as much as, if not more than the $1.5 million average salary of his recent five-year pact with the Packers. He'll be in competition, though, with New England's Adam Vinatieri and Indianapolis' Mike Vanderjagt in commanding a lucrative deal.

Henderson, who turned 35 on Feb. 19, also is reportedly unhappy with the Packers' negotiating ploys because they're not willing to accord him more than a one-year deal.

Henderson said at end of last season that he felt he had three more solid years in him and wants a long-term deal to return to the team.

"We've talked, but we haven't gotten anywhere. We've made up our minds to test the market," agent James Williams said.


Packer Report Top Stories