Packers sign long snapper

Gafford to compete with Davis; linebacker, defensive end make visits

PackerReport.com has learned that the Packers signed long snapper Thomas Gafford to a free agent contract this week. Green Bay also met with free agent linebacker Brandon Chillar and defensive end Corey Smith.

Gafford, who was in Green Bay's training camp in 2006 before he was released, will compete against veteran long snapper Rob Davis, if Davis re-signs with the Packers. The 39-year-old Davis, who completed his 12th NFL season, is an unrestricted free agent. If Davis does not return with Green Bay and does not sign with another team, he is expected to assist the team's Director of Player Development Tim Terry, like he did last year.

Chillar, who met with the Packers on Wednesday, was selected in the fourth round of the 2004 NFL draft by the St. Louis Rams. The Packers are seeking to build depth at linebacker. Chillar is expected to compete with starting outside linebacker Brady Poppinga.

Backup outside linebacker Tracy White, who also is a standout on special teams, has made visits to Denver and Pittsburgh in the past week. If the Packers and White are unable to come to an agreement, look for Green Bay to pursue Chillar, who played in 15 games last year with 67 tackles, 2 1/2 sacks and three forced fumbles.

Chillar also met with the Arizona Cardinals on Tuesday.

Smith, entering his sixth season, had 27 tackles and 2 1/2 sacks in a reserve role with the Detroit Lions last season. Mainly a speed rusher, Smith had 4 1/2 sacks in 22 games overall for the Lions.

Smith met with the Packers on Wednesday. The Minnesota Vikings also are showing interest in the 250-pound defensive end.


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