Shareholder meeting sees mixed reaction

Bleacher ReportAnalyst IJuly 24, 2008
The annual Green Bay Packers shareholder meeting on Thursday saw a mixed reaction to how the team handled the Brett Favre situation.

From all accounts, more fans seemed to support general manager Ted Thompson and the organization, but those in the minority made their voices heard loudly.

As expected, most fans seemed to save either their support or distaste for Thompson. It appears most other team representatives unanimously got warm welcomes including new president and CEO Mark Murphy, outgoing president and CEO Bob Harlan, head coach Mike McCarthy, and other front office executives like Jason Weid.

Both Murphy and Thompson addressed the Favre situation early in their address to the shareholders, albeit brief. Murphy is quoted as saying it was a "sensitive situation," and that he was heavily involved in the decision making.

From Don Walker of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

At one point, Murphy made reference to the fact that the franchise's key decision-makers, notably General Manager Ted Thompson and the team's Executive Committee, were all in unison in wanting to move on without Favre this season.

With that, one fan loudly yelled, "We're not." At that point, there was a smattering of boos and cheers, about evenly divided.

Shortly thereafter, Thompson gave his speech to the shareholders and similarly addressed the Favre situation early on, although not lingering on it. It should be noted that Thompson was greeted by what a reporter from WTMJ television out of Milwaukee described as "a standing ovation."

Among Thompson's notable quotes thanks to the Green Bay Press-Gazette, "We are a family. Families sometimes disagree."

Both Murphy and Thompson made themselves available to the shareholders after the meeting, although their manner of doing so was markedly different.

Murphy reportedly made himself available immediately after the meeting in the first floor Atrium where he received both support and questions about Favre.

Thompson, meanwhile, came out to talk to the public on the fourth floor of Lambeau Field nearly 75 minutes after the meeting had ended. Many fans openly supported Thompson and his decision making. Others openly grilled him.

More on Thompson's Q&A session with fans can be found here in a blog entry by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Tom Silverstein.
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