Sunday, July 31, 2011
Rodgers helps bring back John Kuhn, too
By Kevin Seifert
Earlier Sunday, I joked that some kind words from quarterback Aaron Rodgers had started a countdown on the return of free-agent fullback John Kuhn to the Green Bay Packers.
I guess it was no joke.
In a matter of hours, the Packers re-signed both Kuhn and another Rodgers favorite -- receiver James Jones -- to three-year contracts. Here's the Kuhn story from Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Perhaps Rodgers already knew about both moves when he spoke with reporters, but you have to wonder if Rodgers' public (and private) lobbying didn't play at least a partial role in the returns of both players.
Rodgers told a group of reporters that "we need to add John Kuhn back" because he and Jones "are important to us." Speaking later to Don Banks of Sports Illustrated.com, Rodgers added: "I'm a leader on this team and my voice carries a little bit of weight in the locker room. You don't get better by taking from the whole. You need a guy like [James] Jones back. You need a guy like John Kuhn back. We need guys like that to win.''
Kuhn returns to a crowded backfield that also includes tailbacks Ryan Grant, James Starks and rookie Alex Green. But the versatility Kuhn displayed last season after moving to tailback, and the free-agent departure of fullback Korey Hall, clearly made him a valued piece of the Packers' puzzle.