GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Packers have told Colt Lyerla that he remains in their future plans, even though the undrafted rookie free-agent tight end was informed Tuesday that he was being waived/injured.
Assuming Lyerla clears waivers – and teams rarely claim injured players, much less one that the Packers were the only team to bring him in post-draft on even a tryout basis – he would revert to the Packers and land on season-ending injured reserve, allowing the team to keep his rights.
“As far as I know, that’s how the IR process goes. You have to be released injured for one day and then you can come back on IR,” Lyerla said as he passed through the locker room after practice. “They told me they’re putting me on IR.”
He said that as far as he’s been told, the plan is not to give him an injury settlement and part ways with him.
Lyerla tore the medial collateral and posterior cruciate ligaments while hurdling cornerback Jumal Rolle during the team’s Aug. 2 Family Night practice at Lambeau Field. While the injuries did not require surgery, coach Mike McCarthy has said that they’d sideline Lyerla for multiple “weeks,” and Lyerla said last week that he was told by doctors that he wouldn’t be cleared in time to return before the end of training camp.
While being placed on injured reserve would prevent him from being able to practice all season, he would be able to attend all meetings, work out at the Packers facility, do his rehabilitation work with the Packers’ athletic training and medical staffs and keep him in the structured environment that he has said he wants to be a part of after his checkered past at the University of Oregon.
Although it would likely have been more beneficial to him to be released and land on the practice squad so he could take part in practices and perhaps work his way onto the 53-man roster during the course of the season, the time in the system should help him, too. Lyerla left the Ducks early last fall and only played in two games before leaving the team.
“It will be another year off football, but it’s pretty different where I’ll be at and what I’ll be doing,” Lyerla said. “I’ll be part of the Green Bay Packers organization. I feel like there’s a lot of positives to that.”
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