The Green Bay Packers Wednesday signed free-agent linebacker Armegis Spearman, GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman announced.
Spearman, 26, will compete for a roster spot behind starters Nick Barnett and Na'il Diggs. The Packers are expected to use him at both middle and weak-side linebacker.
The 6-foot-2, 251-pound Spearman (whose first name is pronounced "ar-MEE-giss" with a hard G) signed a restricted free-agent offer sheet with the Packers on March 13, 2003. Cincinnati matched the offer to keep Spearman four days later.
The Bengals waived Spearman, Aug. 31, in their final roster reduction before the regular season. He signed with Houston Sept. 3 and played in the Texans' first 2003 game, a 21-20 upset win at Miami, before the club waived him Sept. 9.
Spearman spent the balance of 2003 out of football. On Jan. 7, he signed a reserve/future contract with Washington, but the Redskins waived him April 1.
In 2000, Spearman enjoyed a stellar rookie season in Cincinnati, where his defensive coordinator was Mark Duffner, now his position coach in Green Bay. Originally signed as an undrafted free agent out of Mississippi, Spearman played in 15 games as a rookie, starting 11, and made 70 tackles with one sack. He joined LaVar Arrington and Brian Urlacher as one of three linebackers on the Football News All-Rookie Team, the only undrafted free agent on the entire squad.
Injuries cut short his next two seasons. In the Bengals' 2001 preseason finale, he sustained a torn pectoral muscle that put him on the Bengals' injured-reserve list and wiped out his season. The next year, 2002, he played in the first seven games before a high right-ankle sprain Oct. 27 vs. Tennessee, and returned to injured reserve.
As a senior at Mississippi in 1999, Spearman served as captain for a defense that ranked fourth in the nation.
Spearman is No. 52 on the Packers' roster.