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Published: 7/31/2008

Packers send president on blitz

ASSOCIATED PRESS

GREEN BAY, Wis. - Green Bay Packers president Mark Murphy traveled to Mississippi to meet with quarterback Brett Favre and his agent, James Cook, yesterday, in an apparent attempt to talk Favre out of reporting to camp later this week.

Meanwhile, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell took no action on Favre's request for reinstatement - giving the sides more time to work out a resolution.

"The commissioner is taking no action today," league officials said in a statement issued by NFL spokesman Greg Aiello. "He wants to give both the Packers and Brett an appropriate amount of time to make decisions, including decisions affecting the team's roster and salary cap. When Brett is reinstated by the commissioner, we will announce it."

Cook told reporters outside his office in Hattiesburg, Miss., that Favre, who has been throwing to players at a nearby high school to stay in shape, could be in Green Bay tomorrow.

"He would love to go back in Green Bay," Cook said, in comments broadcast by ESPNEWS. "I mean, that's why he started working out. But right now, it looks like he'll be the quarterback at Oak Grove High School."

Murphy planned to huddle with other members of the Packers' front office in Green Bay today before speaking to reporters.

Packers coach Mike McCarthy would not discuss the nature of the talks between Murphy and the Favre camp.

"That's something you're going to have to ask Mark about. I'm not involved in the specifics of it. I really have no information for you," McCarthy said.

The Green Bay Press-Gazette reported on its Web site Tuesday night that Murphy's trip to Mississippi was in hopes of talking Favre out of reporting to camp, a situation with the potential to cause a major distraction to a team that committed to moving on after Favre retired in March.

Nearly five months after his tearful retirement news conference in March, Favre filed for reinstatement with the NFL on Tuesday.

Once he is reinstated, the Packers will have 24 hours to release him or return him to their active roster. The team has ruled out releasing Favre, fearing he would immediately sign with division rival Minnesota.

The Packers also could trade Favre, although no deal appeared imminent. The Packers hold Favre's rights until his contract expires after the 2010 season.

Despite the apparent purpose of Murphy's trip, McCarthy reiterated that Favre "absolutely" was still welcome in Packers camp. Team officials have made it clear, both publicly and to Favre, that he would no longer be the starter if he returned to the team.

"I've said it, and I'll just say it again: He was a big part of our history, and he can reinstate, come here and be part of our future," McCarthy said.

Wide receiver Donald Driver, one of Favre's few remaining close friends on a roster full of young players, seemed skeptical that Favre's position with the team would really be much different.

"He's going to have the same role he's always had," Driver said. "He's always been a leader in this locker room, so I don't think that's going to change. Like I said, you guys are worried more about the issue than we are."

McCarthy said the ongoing saga puts Aaron Rodgers in an unusual situation, but said Rodgers is handling it well.

Packers defensive end Aaron Kampman, Rodgers' friend and roommate in training camp, said Rodgers is a "tough guy" who will get tougher under scrutiny.



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