Taking an inside look at all the movers and shakers that make up each of the 32 NFL franchises, Breer’s focus on the Packers is an interesting – and insightful – one.
Instead of the traditional owner who is interested only in profits, the Packers have the advantage over all other teams in the NFL because all money earned goes right back into the football program. That’s why the team is the envy of the league – it’s all football all the time.
While the Packers don’t have an owner, the franchise is overseen by its board – a body that doesn’t interfere heavily with the jobs of those who report to them. In other words, President Mark Murphy, GM Ted Thompson and coach Mike McCarthy are all able to do their jobs without micromanagement.
Can you imagine Jerry Jones working in Green Bay? No, neither can I.
Here’s what Breer had to say about the Packers and Ted Thompson, in particular:
Thompson can be a demanding boss. Standards are high and don’t bend much. But it has worked. Great success has led other clubs to raid Green Bay; Joe Philbin was hired away from McCarthy’s staff, and John Schneider, Reggie McKenzie and John Dorsey were poached from Thompson’s crew. Guys like Eliot Wolf, Alonzo Highsmith and Brian Gutekunst have been relied upon to step up. Russ Ball, who’s garnered some interest as another GM candidate, has become a right-hand man to Thompson in handling the contractual side. Suffice it to say, many teams envy how smoothly things run in Green Bay.
He also uses the comments from an outside NFL general manager who talks about the Green Bay Packers team structure:
“It’s all football, all the time there. The majority of the revenue goes right back into the team. There isn’t an owner saying, ‘OK, this year, if we make $7 million, I make $4 million, and $3 million goes back into it.’ It all goes right back into the organization, into improving the team, into hiring coaches, or, on the business side, investing in the building itself. There’s no owner, but there’s a successful group of businessmen that the president and GM have to sit with, and talk about their direction. The only way it goes bad is if the committee feels like they have a lot of juice in football decisions. But normally, they’re just a great resource in how they grow the business, and also to keep a gauge on Ted and Mark and Mike and whether they’re doing a good enough job.”
Can it get any better than that? No, I didn’t think so.