Reports: Packers re-sign RB Christine Michael, host two other free agents

Christine Michael’s time with the Green Bay Packers will last longer than six games.

ESPN is reporting that the running back has re-signed with the team after visiting them on Wednesday.

Michael was claimed off of waivers from the Seattle Seahawks midway through the 2016 season, and went on to carry the ball 31 times for 1144 yards and one touchdown in six games for the Packers, including 45 yards in a win over the Chicago Bears.

Bringing Michael back gives Green Bay three running backs on their roster, as he joins converted wide receiver Ty Montgomery and undrafted free agent Don Jackson in the team’s backfield.

ESPN’s Field Yates also reported that tackle Byron Bell visited Green Bay on Wednesday, while ESPN’s Rob Demovsky tweeted that the team would be hosting defensive lineman Ricky Jean-Francois.

Bell was on the Tennessee Titans injured reserve all of 2016 after sustaining an ankle injury. Prior to that, though, he had started 72 of 78 possible games between the Titans and Carolina Panthers.

Report: Packers paid more for Bennett than sources indicated for Cook deal

GREEN BAY, Wis. — Former New England Patriots and Chicago Bears tight end Martellus Bennett is now a Green Bay Packer on a three-year deal worth more than Jared Cook would have received, a source tells ProFootballTalk.com.

It was originally believed Bennett would be coming to Green Bay on a three-year, $18.45 million contract, but after the official figures were released, it actually checks in at $21 million. Cook, now presumably out of a job in Green Bay, says he never turned down an offer from the Packers, so there’s no way to know for sure what kind of offer would have been made. ProFootballTalk.com’s source says the Cook deal would not have been larger than the $21 million Bennett signed for.

Bennett will earn an average salary of $7 million, with a $2 million roster bonus coming his way in March of 2018 when the new league year begins. Spotrac.com lists Bennett’s market value at $6 million per year.

The unnamed source says Green Bay was willing to offer Cook no more than $6 million per year — a deal which included incentives.

Packers announce the signing of free agent tight end Martellus Bennett

The Green Bay Packers have dipped into the free agent market in a major way.

Tight end Martellus Bennett, most recently of the New England Patriots, is expected to sign a multi-year deal with the Packers, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today Sports.

Green Bay had reportedly made re-signing tight end Jared Cook a priority, but it appears once talks broke down earlier on Friday they moved on to Bennett, who should be an upgrade at the position. With the Patriots last season, the 30-year-old caught 55 passes for 701 yards and seven touchdowns as New England claimed its fifth Super Bowl title. The signing will give the Packers a chance to stretch the middle of the field, something Cook was able to do and something that had been missing since Jermichael Finley was forced to retire in 2013.

Bennett is known to speak his mind, and that’s likely at least partly responsible for him moving around so much during his 9-year career, with stops in Dallas, New York, Chicago and New England.

A foray into the free agent market like this is a rarity for Packers general manager Ted Thompson. Bennett will be the first unrestricted free agent he’s signed since 2012, the longest streak of any team in the NFL.

Bennett will join Richard Rodgers as the only experienced tight ends on the roster.