Opinion Matters

With Gazette Opinion Editor Greg Peck

Should Pack retire No. 80?

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Greg Peck
Wednesday, February 6, 2013

I read an interesting article by Bob Wolfley in Sunday’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Wolfley said “there’s no way” the Packers will retire wide receiver Donald Driver’s No. 80.

Why not? Well, only five Packers have had their numbers retired in the history of this storied franchise. Can you guess them (I’ll answer that at the end of this blog.)?

Meanwhile, some franchises “are ridiculously indiscriminate” about retiring numbers. For example, Wolfley noted that the Boston Celtics have retired 22 numbers, and he suggests this cheapens the honor.

OK, if only five Packers have ever had their numbers retired, maybe Wolfley has a point. But then he goes on to suggest that the Packers will retire Brett Favre’s No. 4. Does that make sense?

Driver, who is retiring this morning in a special ceremony at the Lambeau Field Atrium, has become one of the most beloved Packers of all time. His rags-to-riches story and winning smile and “Dancing with the Stars” effort go with sterling career reception numbers.

Favre was beloved, too, but his waffling about retirement caused the Packer brass to push him aside. He went to play for the New York Jets, but only so he could exact revenge, of sorts, by later signing with a key Packer rival, the Minnesota Vikings. An investigation also arose as to whether Favre—a married man—sent a sexually explicit photo of himself to a female Jets reporter.

So an endeared lifelong Packer such as Driver won’t have his number retired, but Favre eventually will. It might happen that way, but not if I had anything to say about it.

Oh, and the five Packers with their numbers retired? They’re Don Hutson, 14; Tony Canadeo, 3; Bart Starr, 15; Ray Nitschke, 66; and Reggie White, 92.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook

Last updated: 9:25 am Monday, April 29, 2013

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

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