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Packers release receiver Darrius Shepherd to make room for Tavon Austin

Ryan Wood
Packers News

GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers released receiver Darrius Shepherd from their 53-man roster Tuesday, a move that opened a roster spot for newly signed receiver Tavon Austin.

The Packers on Tuesday announced the signing of Austin, the eighth overall pick in the 2013 draft, to add depth to their receiver position and special teams. Austin, who doubles as a return specialist, duplicates much of what Shepherd contributed to the Packers.

Green Bay Packers wide receiver Darrius Shepherd (82) runs the ball while Indianapolis Colts defensive back Tavon Wilson (31) defends in the first half at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Shepherd could be added to the practice squad if he clears waivers. He started this season on the practice squad before being promoted to the active roster Sept. 26. In eight games, he had five catches for 46 yards. He also committed a costly fumble on a kickoff return against Indianapolis.

Shepherd played six games as an undrafted rookie last season.

Austin will be eligible to practice Wednesday. He has not played this season since injuring his knee during training camp with the San Francisco 49ers.