On Now
Coming Up
  • Wed., Jul. 23, 2014 5:00 PM CDT Ask Vic Day

    “Ask Vic Day” will include dinner and a movie, an “Ask Vic Live,” and a few other surprises along the way. The event will be held on July 23, 2014, at Lambeau Field. Registration will begin at 4 pm with a 5 pm kickoff. Door prizes will be awarded during the reception.

    Cost per person is $35 (tax included).

  • Thu., Jul. 24, 2014 11:00 AM CDT Shareholders Meeting

    The Green Bay Packers 2014 Annual Meeting of Shareholders will be held Thursday, July 24, at 11 a.m., at Lambeau Field. The meeting will take place rain or shine.

  • Fri., Jul. 25, 2014 6:00 PM CDT Packers 1K Kids Run

    Back to Football also includes the 1K Kids Run, presented by WPS Health Insurance. Kids 10 years old and younger will have the opportunity to run a Lambeau Lap on Friday, July 25, at 6 p.m. Registration for the Kids Run is $10 and all participants will receive a Packers 1K Run t-shirt, a logoed bag and a participant medal.

    http://www.packers.com/5k

  • Fri., Jul. 25, 2014 7:00 PM CDT Movie Night at Lambeau Field

    Movie Night at Lambeau Field will return this year on Friday, July 25, following the 1K Kids Run. The event is free and open to the public, and concessions will be available throughout the movie. More details will be announced at a later date.

    Time listed above is subject to change.

  • Sat., Jul. 26, 2014 6:30 PM CDT Packers 5K Run/Walk

    The fifth annual ‘5K Run/Walk at Lambeau Field,’ is set for Saturday, July 26, at 6:30 p.m.

    The computer-timed run is highlighted by a neighborhood route that ultimately takes participants into Lambeau Field and around the famed gridiron. The event has a special finish line – the Packers’ ‘G’ painted on turf located in the parking lot.

    All participants will receive a Packers 5K Run T-shirt, a logoed bag, and a bib number and timing chip. To celebrate the race’s fifth anniversary, all participants will receive a commemorative medal. In addition, photos will be taken on the course and will be available at no cost on the Packers 5K Run website.

    Packers-themed awards will be presented to the top three finishers in each age group. An awards ceremony will take place following the conclusion of the race.

    Registration, which is $25 for adults and $15 for children (12 and younger), will be available online beginning Friday, May 23, at www.packers.com/5k. Mail-in registration is also an option, with forms available online and in person at Lambeau Field. Runners can also register at the Bellin Run Expo on Friday, June 13, at Astor Park in Green Bay. Early registration is encouraged. After July 13, registration fees will increase to $30 and $20, respectively.

  • Thu., Jul. 31, 2014 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM CDT PPCC Annual Reception

    The Packers Partners Annual Reception is set for Thursday, July 31, 2014 in the Lambeau Field Atrium from 4:00 PM- 7:00 PM.

    Packers Jarrett Boykin, Eddie Lacy, Datone Jones and DuJuan Harris will appear at the reception. The event will include a Player Guest Q&A, a Meet & Greet with a Packers Alumni and a Raffle Drawing.

    This is a member’s only event. Invitations will be mailed the week of June 23rd, and online registration will open at 9 am CDT on June 25th and will close on July 11th at 5 pm CDT. 

    Invitations will include all of this information and additional details.

    To sign up to become a member of the Packers Partners Club of Champions and receive an invitation to the reception, fans can go to www.packers.com/ppcc.

     

News

Print
RSS

Combine needs fans for it to continue rise in popularity

Posted Feb 24, 2014

Scouting world will determine combine’s fate

Pitt DL Aaron Donald

GREEN BAY—The NFL wants to make the scouting combine a Super Bowl-like offseason event. For that to happen, the league may have to take control of it away from the people that created it.

In 2012 and ’13, the NFL opened the combine doors for free to a few hundred diehard fans. It was precedent setting and the league would like to advance that practice by selling some pricey ticket packages to draft-crazy fans that envision the combine to be a kind of football winter Olympics. After that, who knows?

One problem: The league’s general managers are not in favor of opening the doors to the kingdom they created. Hey, they had agreed to allow the media to occupy a nearby room, and then the NFL scouting bosses winced as NFL Network began televising the event, but no way would they allow the combine to be marketed to fans, even at a price that would help pay the scouting czars’ salaries.

It’s almost comical. The fan can see for free on TV what the league could charge the fan to view in person, but the czars say no. That’s why the scouting combine isn’t likely to become a Super Bowl-like offseason event.

“The first combine I went to, there was no media,” packers.com draft contributor Tony Pauline said. “There was no media room. I was outside the exit gate trying to get information. A lot of media people like it because you have one central area where you can talk to coaches, general managers, prospects. Media like it because they don’t have to work the phones.”

The league likes it because it was with the decision to bring the media inside the building that the scouting combine began to rise in popularity and profile. Whether you like the media or hate the media, there’s no denying its power. It can make you, or it can break you. It has made the combine what it is.

Nine hundred press credentials were distributed for this past weekend’s festivities. Once upon a time, a few hardened football beat reporters stood in the lobby of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, waiting for scouts, general managers, coaches and agents to walk by and then stop to offer a few comments.

The doors to this year’s combine opened to us on Thursday morning. On Sunday at 5 p.m., we were told to leave to not return, even though the workouts wouldn’t shift into high gear until Monday morning. Jadeveon Clowney and Aaron Donald stole the show on Monday morning, but we were already gone.

Why doesn’t the media complain? It’s because by Sunday afternoon the media is bored out of its mind and just wants to go home.

“The weekend is just for the media, but the combine goes on until Tuesday,” Pauline said.

So why did so many media people attend something they were forbidden to see and forced to leave before it’s complete? Michael Sam, that’s why.

“You have to keep having stories like Michael Sam and Manti Te’o. If there’s no huge story like that, I don’t think you’re going to see 900 people next year,” Pauline said.

What we may have seen this past weekend is the peak of the combine’s popularity. Unless it can continue delivering Sam-like and Te’o-like press conferences, the combine is unlikely to continue its rise.

It needs drama to do that, and it needs for draft prospects to provide that drama in on-the-field competition, which is another issue confronting the league in its promotion of the combine. Star players declining to participate in workouts won’t work, and neither will the refusal of the league’s football brass to open their doors.

The czars hold the key to the combine’s future. They can breathe more life into it and further popularize the game of professional football, or they can continue to control and sanitize an event that, frankly, isn’t nearly as important as we delude ourselves into believing it is.

 
blog comments powered by Disqus

You May Also Be Interested in...

Recent Videos

  • Aaron Rodgers tops the list of 2013 clutch plays

    (1:41) Posted 9 hours ago

    Where does it rank on NFL.com's list of the top clutch QB moments of the season?

  • Packers Pro Shop hosts ribbon cutting

    (1:56) Posted Jul 17, 2014

    Hear from Green Bay Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy and Director of Retail Operations Kate Hogan talk about the new Packers Pro Shop. The Green Bay Packers Pro shop held its grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday, July 17 outside the new pro shop at the northeast entrance of Lambeau Field.

  • Packers Pro Shop Grand Opening Press Conference

    (15:04) Posted Jul 17, 2014

    The Green Bay Packers Pro shop held its grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday, July 17 outside the new pro shop at the northeast entrance of Lambeau Field.