The Green Bay Packers announced they signed former Oregon Ducks tight end Colt Lyerla after they brought in the talented, yet troubled prospect in for a tryout after he went undrafted in the 2014 NFL Draft.
— Rob Demovsky (@RobDemovsky) May 19, 2014
Lyerla tested very well at the combine in February but after leaving the Oregon football early last season and having issues off the field, including run-ins with the law and cocaine use, the 6-5, 245-pound tight end was not among the 256 players to be drafted in the draft earlier this month.
With the Packers facing an uncertain future with free agent Jermichael Finley who is trying to come back from a neck injury, the Packers are rolling the dice on a player who would have been a candidate to be a late-first or second round pick if not for his off-the-field concerns.
With no off-field history, Lyerla would have been my No. 2 ranked TE in this class (behind Ebron) and a Rd2 grade. — Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) May 19, 2014
The signing of Lyerla does not ensure he will make the final roster, but he will be given a chance to show his past is in the past and to put his best foot forward for a bright future. The move isn’t as risky as you may think because there is little time and money on a contract for an undrafted free agent and can be cut at the first sign of trouble.