Pack­ers’ share­hold­ers see a su­per year

The Denver Post - - BUSINESS - By Genaro C. Armas

GREEN BAY, WIS.» Train­ing camp has yet to be­gin and Green Bay Pack­ers pres­i­dent Mark Mur­phy is al­ready look­ing for­ward to the end of the sea­son.

Fin­ish­ing the year at the Su­per Bowl, which is be­ing played in Min­neapo­lis at the home of the NFC North ri­val Vik­ings, would be quite a treat for Pack­ers fans.

“I tell you it’s go­ing to be a lot of fun this year for all our fans to drive across the state of Wis­con­sin,” Mur­phy joked at the Pack­ers’ an­nual stock­hold­ers meet­ing Mon­day.

This was no chest-thump­ing guar­an­tee, just a good­na­tured com­ment from Mur­phy to the roughly 7,000 peo­ple who sat through the 90-minute meet­ing on a sunny day at Lam­beau Field. These diehard Pack­ers fans took no is­sue with the state­ment.

“It cer­tainly wasn’t a guar­an­tee. It was just that it would be re­ally nice to play in a Su­per Bowl in Min­neapo­lis,” Mur­phy said. “I hear from fans all the time in west­ern Wis­con­sin … Min­neapo­lis is a great city and the new sta­dium is re­ally pretty spec­tac­u­lar. It will be a re­ally nice Su­per Bowl.”

As the NFL’s only pub­licly-owned team, the Pack­ers are re­quired to host a share­hold­ers meet­ing each year. Most at­ten­dees show up decked in an Aaron Rodgers jer­sey or some other va­ri­ety of green-and-gold at­tire. A hand­ful wore foam cheese­heads.

With play­ers due to re­port for camp on Wed­nes­day, the meet­ing rep­re­sents an un­of­fi­cial kick­off to foot­ball sea­son. The first prac­tice is Thurs­day.

The Pack­ers have re­leased most of the fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion al­ready, though Mur­phy did of­fer a few fresh tid­bits:

• Player costs rose to $192.5 mil­lion in 2017, up 16 per­cent from the pre­vi­ous year. This was at­trib­uted to the cycli­cal na­ture of player con­tracts.

• The Pack­ers have ap­plied to host the NFL draft in 2019, 2020 or 2021. Mur­phy said a de­ci­sion from the NFL could come next sum­mer.

• Mur­phy was asked about a po­ten­tial foot­ball se­ries be­tween Wis­con­sin and Notre Dame to be played at Lam­beau and Sol­dier Field in Chicago. He replied: “I would say we’ve been work­ing on that for a while and I’m very, hope­fully very soon we’ll be able to make an an­nounce­ment.”

The fran­chise is also in the midst of plan­ning events around its 100th an­niver­sary sea­son in 2018.

“I think the only more highly at­tended share­holder meet­ing is Berk­shire Hath­away. They have more peo­ple, so maybe on our 100th an­niver­sary we can break the record,” Mur­phy said.

Adam Wes­ley, The Post-Cres­cent

Lil­lian Bowen, 3, of Oshkosh, Wis., plays in the stands dur­ing Mon­day’s an­nual Green Bay Pack­ers share­hold­ers meet­ing at his­toric Lam­beau Field in Green Bay, Wis.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.