Battlefront: Wide receivers

Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson released veteran wide receiver Marc Boerigter on Tuesday, leaving the door wide open for free agent Ruvell Martin to make the team.'s Todd Korth predicts who the Packers will keep at wide receiver when the 53-man roster is set.

Green Bay's situation at wide receiver, a muddled mess at the start of training camp, has become crystal clear. With Marc Boerigter cast aside, Packers general manager Ted Thompson has pretty much named the team's top five receivers with two preseason games remaining.

Donald Driver is a lock to start and rookie Greg Jennings seems to have the inside track on incumbent Robert Ferguson to start. Rod Gardner and Boerigter were battling for the No. 4 spot, with Gardner winning, leaving the last and final roster spot within the position for free agent Ruvell Martin. Though there is a very slim chance of the Packers retaining rookie fourth-round pick Corey Rodgers ahead of Martin, it is more likely that Rodgers is headed for the street and/or practice squad to work on fielding punts and kickoffs.

"Gumby," as Aaron Rodgers affectionately calls Martin, has had a solid off-season and should be on the Packers' 53-man roster. At 6-foot-4, 217 pounds, Martin has the size that Thompson is seeking, plus an excellent ability at getting open and making difficult catches. He showed that ability during the off-season minicamps and carried it into training camp, where he has performed well in practices.

Who knows? If Martin can play well during the final two preseason games, he may quickly see some playing time during the regular season.

Martin certainly has paid his dues. He spent the last seven weeks of the 2005 season on Green Bay's practice squad before re-signing in January of this year. He was released in training camp by San Diego in 2004 and was out of football. He gained experience in NFL Europe in 2005, but was released again by the Chargers.

Martin is bound to make the roster. He is far ahead of other free agent reserves such as Calvin Russell and Chad Lucas. Unless recently aquired Carlton Brewster makes a huge statement in practices and the final two preseason games, Martin is on the team for the regular season.

Wide receivers roster prediction: The Packers likely will keep five wide receivers. Look for these five to be on the 53-man roster when Green Bay hosts Chicago for the regular season opener Sept. 10: Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, Robert Ferguson, Rod Gardner, Ruvell Martin.

Todd Korth

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