published Sunday, September 1st, 2013

B.J. Coleman still on Green Bay Packers' roster

  • photo
    Green Bay Packers quarterback B.J. Coleman (9) rolls out during an NFL preseason football game against the Kansas City Chiefs.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

The Green Bay Packers cut Vince Young on Saturday, leaving two quarterbacks on their roster: 2011 NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and former McCallie and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga standout B.J. Coleman.

Saturday was cut-down day in the league, and all teams had to trim their rosters to 53 players. Coleman wasn't one of the casualties, but Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Tim Benford, the former Red Bank High School and Tennessee Tech star, was. Also cut was former UTC defensive back Chris Lewis-Harris, who was trying to make the Cincinnati Bengals' roster.

Less than 10 days ago, Young appeared to have put himself in position to be the backup to Rodgers after a strong outing in the Packers' third preseason game. Last season's No. 2, Graham Harrell, was cut soon after, but it was Young's turn Saturday.

Selected in the seventh round of the 2012 draft by the Packers, Coleman spent last season on the practice squad. He came into this season's training camp in position to compete for the No. 2 job with Harrell. Young was signed after the first preseason game.

Making the Packers' 53-man roster doesn't guarantee Coleman the backup job. Numerous quarterbacks around the league were cut Saturday, including former Packers backup Matt Flynn, and Green Bay could sign one off waivers today. Coleman went 8-for-13 for 86 yards and a touchdown in the Packers' second preseason game, against the St. Louis Rams. He was 2-for-7 passing in the other three games.

Benford was on the Cowboys' practice squad last season and could be signed to the practice squad again if he isn't picked up by another team. Benford had four catches for 60 yards against the Houston Texans on Thursday and finished the preseason with 11 for 135 yards.

Lewis-Harris spent most of last season on the Bengals' practice squad but did play in two games, including a playoff game. He said Saturday that he will be on the practice squad again this season if another team doesn't claim him.

"I kind of knew yesterday what the situation was going to be," Lewis-Harris said. "Being on the practice squad gives me another year to get better. They're trying to move me inside to one of the nickel spots, and I'm definitely going to try to get that down."

NFL teams can have up to eight players on their practice squads. Players can remain on a practice squad for up to three seasons. Practice squad players in 2013 will earn a minimum of $6,000 per week.

Coleman and Benford didn't return phone or text messages seeking comment.

Contact John Frierson at jfrierson@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6268. Follow him at twitter.com/MocsBeat.

about John Frierson...

John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...

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