Packers Daily Links: Green Bay Named ESPN's Best Sports Franchise

The Packers have been named the top franchise in professional sports by ESPN the Magazine. That and more in today's Daily Links...

On the Packers calendar today is the private Super Bowl ring ceremony being held inside the Lambeau Field Atrium...

In a survey conducted by ESPN the Magazine, the Green Bay Packers were found to be the best franchise in all of American professional sports. "The Packers were the top-scoring team in two of the eight categories, topping all other teams in 'stadium experience' and tying for the top spot in 'title track'—championships won, or expected to be won, during the lifetime of current fans--with the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins," according to Carrie Kreisworth of ESPNMediaZone. "The Packers also ranked fourth overall in 'bang for the buck,' and fifth overall in the categories 'coaching' and 'ownership.' Their fan base makes up a substantial portion of ownership as the only publicly-owned team in U.S. pro sports." ESPN the Magazine's "Best In Sports Issue" hits newsstands tomorrow, Friday June 17.

In advance of tonight's Super Bowl ring ceremony, Jason Wilde of shared some thoughts from head coach Mike McCarthy who reflected upon having the players sized for their rings the night before the Super Bowl. “Like a lot of things, you’re never really the first one to do anything original,” said McCarthy. “Whether it’s a play or a certain type of scheme or even scheduling, there’s people that have sized their rings before the game. I don’t know if (the other Super Bowl coaches) did it the night before." Tonight will mark the first time the entire team has gotten together since shortly after their Return to Titletown celebration back in February.

Mike McCarthy also spoke with the team's official website. “I’m looking forward to sharing it with my wife and the team,” McCarthy told Vic Ketchman of about tonight's ceremony. “I’m anxious to see the reaction of the players when they see the ring. I know the design that went into making this a special ring, and it is. We definitely hit the target of making this ring symbolic of the championship of Super Bowl XLV.” According to Wilde's article, McCarthy, Mark Murphy and two as-of-yet unnamed players will meet with the media for coverage of the event.

Following yesterday's news that cornerback Josh Bell, who spent the season on injured reserve, would not be part of this evening's ceremony, Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel got comment from his agent. "The thing is he’s a part of the team no matter how you look at it," agent Frederick Lyles is quoted as saying. "He was injured playing. He’s still a part of the roster." Silverstein also reports that Bell was offered an injury settlement and refused to accept it.

More on the Josh Bell angle comes from Pete Dougherty of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. "Besides not receiving a ring, Bell was not in the Packers’ team photo from the Super Bowl, which means he’s their only player on injured reserve who didn’t join them in Dallas," writes Dougherty. "Lyles said his client remained with the Packers for his entire rehabilitation rather than work at his offseason home, so he was around the club all season."

In a feature at the Journal Sentinel, reporter Lori Nickel interviewed former players about Super Bowl rings of the past, the ceremony, losing them and selling them. "Details of the Super Bowl XLV ring's design and the ceremony are being kept secret by the Packers in an effort to create a special, meaningful and surprising event for the players, coaches and staff who contributed to winning the 45th Super Bowl," writes Nickel. It's worth noting that the Lombardi era didn't have ceremonies to receive their rings.

More on the extent of the damage to Lambeau Field from last weekend's concert comes courtesy of Pete Dougherty. "The worst of the damage is a brown path at least 10 yards wide at the south end of the stadium, probably around the 30-yard line, and a thin strip along the east sideline at the same end of the field," writes Dougherty. "There also are several faint, thin brown lines on the north end of the field." As Dougherty notes, the damage didn't come so much from the crowd inself but rather the large cranes needed to erect the performance stage.

The future of more concerts at Lambeau Field is looked into by Kendra Meinert of the Press-Gazette. "(Kenny) Chesney himself, who repeatedly told the crowd how much it meant to be the first act of his magnitude to play the venue, took out a full-page ad Wednesday in the Green Bay Press-Gazette that included his own photos at Lambeau and a handwritten note thanking fans, Green Bay, the Green Bay Packers and local country station Y100 for making it 'such a special, historic night,'" writes Meinert. "The home page of his official website touts an exclusive gallery of photos from the show as well." The Packers are waiting to see how the playing surface recovers and assessing the damage before committing to such future events.

Linebacker Clay Matthews is replacing Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker as a guest instructor at an upcoming football camp at the University of William & Mary, and will be joined by a fellow Packer. "Matthews is the reigning NFC Defensive Player of the Year and was a key cog in helping Green Bay capture the Super Bowl XLV Title," according to the Virginia Gazette. "Fellow Packer, quarterback Aaron Rodgers, the Super Bowl MVP, will also be a guest instructor at the camp, along with Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, the 2010 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year."

Chad Clifton came in 12th in the voting for the NFL's best left tackles by writers.

Former Packers linebacker John Anderson is interviewed for an article at

Former Packers Antonio Freeman, Rob Davis and Barrett Brooks have the opportunity to win a job as a studio analyst at the upcoming Broadcast Boot Camp.

More on the damage to the Lambeau Field turf comes from Don Walker of the Journal Sentinel.

Jason Wilde touches upon Josh Bell and the ESPN top franchise rankings.

Undrafted rookies are the focus of an article by Len Pasquarelli for Packer Report (subscription required).

The NFL's labor negotiations get attention from Brandon Benson at Acme Packing Company.

Aaron Rodgers' efforts as a music producer are touched upon by Kevin Seifert of

Michael Hunt of the Journal Sentinel thinks they'll sell out Lambeau Field for a Brett Favre retirement ceremony.

The value of unofficial team workouts are examined at Aerys Sports.

Aaron Rodgers' prospects as an NFL Hall of Famer are looked at by Kris Burke of

ESPN's top franchise rankings are commented upon by Acme Packing Company and Total Packers.

Whether the Packers can repeat as champs is looked at by Joe Arrigo at Bleacher Report.

A picture of a 60s era Packers charity basketball team appears at Packerville, U.S.A.

More on the ring ceremony at Lombardi Ave.

Vic Ketchman answers his mailbag at

Brian Carriveau is the editor of the Maple Street Press Packers Annual. To contact Brian, email [email protected].

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Comments (3)

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Tommyboy's picture

June 16, 2011 at 11:34 am

I thought Justin Harrell wasn't in the super bowl photo either...???

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CaLIPACKFAN's picture

June 16, 2011 at 04:32 pm

Green Bay should just be number 1 sports franchise of all time no other franchise has done what this one has done. GO PACK AND BREWERS!!!!!!!!!!

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ppabich's picture

June 16, 2011 at 07:00 pm

"Green Bay Named ESPN’s Best Sports Franchise"


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