Packers notes: After prank scare, tight end Robert Tonyan celebrates

Jim Owczarski
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
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Green Bay Packers tight end Robert Tonyan (85) makes a touchdown catch during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Kansas City, Mo., Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018.

GREEN BAY – Saturday afternoon was an interesting one for Robert Tonyan.

Anxiously awaiting word if he had made the 53-man roster for the Green Bay Packers, the first-year tight end received a text from an unknown, out-of-area number telling him to bring his iPad and his gear to Lambeau Field. He was already a little put off by the fact he was cut via text and when he went up to the third-floor offices, coaches were happy to see him – only he thought they were happy to see him go.

“That was kind of brutal,” Tonyan said Monday “That’s how I found out – I went up there and everybody’s 'congratulations’ and I’m like, what the hell is going on? Why is everyone happy up here and I’m coming in to turn in my stuff? I got the text. They’re like, it’s just prank text from a number. I don’t know.

“I’m just glad I went up there and it wasn’t (true).”

After being able to exhale he shared the news with his mother, Tammy, on her birthday.

“It was good to give her that call and give her that birthday present, so now I’ve actually got to get her an item,” he said. “It was nice to call her and share an emotional moment with her, something that she’s been there for me since I’ve been playing in middle school. For it to be on her birthday, I can’t be thankful enough.”

Not practicing

Linebacker Oren Burks (shoulder), safety Josh Jones (undisclosed) and linebacker James Crawford (undisclosed) all dressed for practice Monday, but once individual drills began the three moved to the side field inside the Don Hutson Center.

“We’ll get into the exact report on Wednesday,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “But just coming off the weekend and what was done with Thursday night’s game in Kansas City, obviously O.B. (Burks) is still working through the shoulder. So we just want to put them in the rehab, you know, rehab limited return and we’ll see where they are Wednesday.”

Looking to stick

Korey Toomer knew the deal in San Francisco. Signed on April 4, the 29-year-old veteran linebacker understood why he was brought in – to be insurance in case Rueben Foster would be suspended, or released, for a domestic violence allegation. 

“I’m just going to call it like I see it,” Toomer said Monday at his locker in Lambeau Field. “I felt like I was an insurance policy. And once they figured out what was going on with Reuben, it was clear to me from there. And then they drafted a ‘backer. You know how business goes. It’s all business. There’s no hard feelings with them. I still love those guys, those coaches. They were great.”

And when those chargers against Foster were dismissed in late May, Toomer knew his time might run short. He was released by the 49ers on Saturday, but quickly found a home in Green Bay when the Packers put wide receiver Jake Kumerow on injured reserve.

A fifth-round pick of the Seahawks out of Idaho in 2012, Toomer has bounced to Dallas, St. Louis, Oakland and San Diego/Los Angeles. Over the last two years he has forced five fumbles, broken up five passes and recorded 123 combined tackles.

“I feel like I put up great numbers, given what the playing time that I had,” he said. “I feel like it’s tough not being able to find a home and find somebody that wants me and lets me play and be myself and play my game. I think that’s tough. But the only thing I can keep doing is keep working. I gotta keep my head down and keep working and it’ll all pan itself out. I feel like Green Bay can be the spot for me, and I hope it is. I hope and pray and the only thing I can do is keep working for it.”

Practice squad filled

The Packers rounded out their practice squad Monday by re-signing safety Marwin Evans and bringing in cornerback Tony Brown. Evans is in his third year with the Packers and played in all 32 games the last two seasons. Brown is a rookie from Alabama who was released by the Los Angeles Chargers.

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