GREEN BAY – With the first practice of training camp only days away, the Packers have added another veteran to their receiver competition.
Green Bay has signed third-year pro Malik Turner, who caught 17 passes for 245 yards and a touchdown in 21 games with the Seattle Seahawks the past two seasons.
Turner joins a deep position battle consisting of returning veterans Allen Lazard, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Jake Kumerow, Equanimeous St. Brown and Darrius Shepherd, and first-year players Reggie Begelton, Malik Taylor and Darrell Stewart.
Here are five things to know about Turner:
1. He attended the Packers’ minicamp on a tryout in 2018.
This isn’t the first time Green Bay has had its eye on the 24-year-old receiver. Turner was one of two receivers who participated on a tryout basis at their three-day minicamp in 2018. Turner didn’t receive a contract but signed with the Seattle Seahawks at the start of training camp one month later.
2. He worked his way up the depth chart in Seattle.
Turner caught five passes for 91 yards and a touchdown during his first preseason with the Seahawks. While it wasn’t enough to crack Seattle’s initial 53-man roster, Turner was offered a spot on the team’s practice squad and saw action in two regular-season games later that season. The 6-foot-2, 202-pounder came back to make the Seahawks’ initial 53 last summer and stayed there. He had 15 catches for 245 yards in 15 games last season. Turner also is regarded for his run-blocking and special-teams acumen. He became a free agent in April when Seattle rescinded its exclusive-rights tender.
3. His first NFL touchdown catch came off a crucial trick play.
Turner caught his first NFL touchdown pass last November against the Philadelphia Eagles, off a trick play in which quarterback Russell Wilson tossed the ball to running back Chris Carson who then lateralled it back. Turner, selling a block, then came open for a critical 33-yard TD that proved to be a difference-maker in the Seahawks’ 17-9 road victory. It’s the longest reception of Turner’s NFL career to date.
4. Turner is one of the all-time leading receivers in Illinois history.
Turner finished his career with both the ninth-most receiving yards (1,804) and the ninth-most receptions (143) in Illinois history. He played right away as a true freshman in 2014 and enjoyed his best season in 2016, when he led the Illini with 48 receptions for 712 yards and six touchdowns.
5. He’s a native of Springfield, Ill., who chose to stay in-state.
Turner starred at Sacred Heart-Griffin High School in Springfield. He caught 69 passes for 1,378 yards and 22 touchdowns during a perfect 14-0 season in which the program captured the IHSA Class 5A state championship. He was listed as a three-star recruit by ESPN.com, Rivals and Scout.