Rookie safety signs contract

Aaron Rouse

Rouse second of 11 draft picks under contract; two offensive linemen released

Safety Aaron Rouse signed a contract with the Green Bay Packers today. The Packers also announced that they have released offensive linemen Kevin Barry and Josh Bourke.

Terms of Rouse's deal were not disclosed, but he likely received a four-year deal. Linebacker Abdul Hodge and offensive lineman Jason Spitz were each selected in the third round in the 2006 NFL draft and each player signed a four-year contract. Spitz, chosen 75th overall by Green Bay, received a $742,000 signing bonus.

Rouse is the second of 11 selections to sign with the team. Chosen in the third round (89th overall) of the 2007 NFL Draft, he joins Virginia Tech teammate David Clowney, a fifth-round pick signed Monday, as the first rookies under contract.

Rouse will be competing against veteran Marquand Manuel for the right to start at strong safety next to Nick Collins in training camp. Rouse has been playing with the second-team defense during off-season practices in Green Bay in May and this month.

Rouse began his collegiate career at linebacker, then made the switch to strong safety as a junior. In 2006, he earned the team's President Award, given to the most outstanding leader on defense. In 52 games at Virginia Tech, he made 24 starts and recorded 217 tackles and five interceptions.

Barry, a 6-foot-4, 322-pound veteran out of Arizona, played in 59 games with eight starts. He missed all of last season with a ruptured quadriceps that he sustained during a minicamp practice. He originally signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2002.

Bourke injured his back late in training camp and was placed on season-ending injured reserve. The 6-foot-7, 314-pound tackle is in his second year from Grand Valley State. He had joined the team as a non-drafted free agent in 2006.

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