The Green Bay Packers have signed wide receiver Robert Ferguson to a multi-year contract extension, GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman announced Tuesday.
The Packers' second-round selection (41st overall) in the 2001 NFL Draft, Ferguson is one of the NFL's rising young pass-catchers. He won a starting spot at split end in 2003 with a strong training camp performance, then during the regular season posted career highs in receptions (38), receiving yards (520) and touchdown receptions (4).
He also remained one of the Packers' most valuable special teams performers, leading the team in coverage tackles with 17 (tied for fourth among NFL starters).
Demonstrating his toughness and willingness to play through pain on several occasions in 2003, he played in 15 games and started 12, despite knee, ankle and Achilles' injuries, as well as a concussion.
Ferguson, 24, turned in his season's best performance Dec. 14 at San Diego, with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdown receptions in a 38-21 victory. The first, a 40-yarder on the heels of a Chargers TD, gave Green Bay a 24-21 lead with 11:18 to play, while the second, from 16 yards out, helped seal the contest with just under four minutes left.
Rising to the occasion during the playoffs, he caught two more TD passes among five receptions for 73 yards.
The Packers are 7-0 during the regular season, including four wins in 2003, when Ferguson either leads the team in receptions and/or catches a touchdown pass.
A Texas A&M product who played just one season at the Division I level, Ferguson in 2000 led the Big 12 conference in receptions. The year before, 1999, he was an All-American at Tyler (Texas) Junior College.