Frank Zomboís long wait is finally over.
On eve of Sunday's game against Arizona, the Green Bay Packers activated the 6-foot-3, 254-pound linebacker from their reserve/physically unable to perform list.
A third-year player out of Central Michigan, Zombo has played in 18 career games with nine starts since making the Packers as an undrafted free agent in 2010. Heís totaled 82 tackles, five sacks and two forced fumbles during that time, but had been sidelined since suffering a deep hamstring injury during individual workouts in the spring.
Zombo, 25, was shut down indefinitely through training camp before being placed on PUP for the first six weeks of the season. He returned to practice on Oct. 17, which gave the Packers until next Wednesday to either activate Zombo, release him or place him on injured reserve based on the three-week practice window PUP players are allowed by the NFL.
ďI want to obviously play again,Ē Zombo told the Press-Gazette this week. ďThat was the goal all along and I think that goal is starting to become a reality. Practice has been going well. I canít complain. Hopefully, they see the same things that Iíve been feeling and give me a chance.Ē
The Packers had a spot available on the 53-man roster since placing D.J. Smith on injured reserve on Oct. 17, so they didnít need to make a corresponding roster move to active Zombo.
Zombo, who has played on both defense and special teams, could provide a lift to the Packersí pass rush as starting outside linebacker Nick Perry will miss his third consecutive game with a knee injury.
Fifth-year veteran Erik Walden has been starting in his place with undrafted rookie Dezman Moses also seeing limited snaps in the team's sub-packages.
Whatever his role is, Zombo said this week heís feeling good again and happy to be finally earning his paycheck.
ďIím moving around pretty good I feel like,Ē Zombo said. ďItís kind of like the first few weeks of camp again because itís been so long, so Iím still kind of breaking off the rust I guess, but functionally I feel pretty decent. Iím moving around well.Ē
As was the case with Zombo, the Packers have until Wednesday to activate tight end Andrew Quarless, who also has been practicing since Oct. 17. The teamís third PUP player, offensive tackle Derek Sherrod, has yet to practice and appears headed to injured reserve.
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