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GREEN BAY - Though he arrived late, veteran specialist Brett Goode has won the long snapper job for the Green Bay Packers.
Goode’s competitor, Derek Hart, was released Monday afternoon. The Packers also released wide receiver Colby Pearson and running back William Stanback.
Goode, 32, has opened the regular season as the Packers’ long snapper every year since 2008, when he replaced the injured J.J. Jansen. But lately his paths to the roster have come with significant twists.
Earlier this year, the Packers allowed Goode to become an unrestricted free agent when his contract expired in March. He remained unsigned until Aug. 12, at which point the Packers brought him back to compete with Hart, a rookie from James Madison.
Hart previously had beaten out fellow rookie Taybor Pepper, who signed with the Packers after the 2016 playoffs. Pepper signed Monday with the Baltimore Ravens.
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Two years ago, in 2015, Goode suffered a torn ACL against the Oakland Raiders in Week 15. He was declared a free agent three months later and went unsigned until the Packers brought him back a week before the regular season.
What ultimately doomed Hart was the kind of inconsistency Goode has avoided during his time with kicker Mason Crosby. Where Goode’s snaps often landed with the laces in the exact right position, some of Hart’s snaps required holder Justin Vogel to spin the ball to make sure the laces were pointing out.
“There’s been a couple of those throughout camp that we’ve gotten away with,” Crosby said Aug. 7. “And it all kind of, unfortunately, unraveled there on Family Night with some of the snaps, getting the laces and things like that, just getting the timing down.”
Crosby missed six of his 11 field goals that night to foreshadow the possibility of a change.