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Packers say relationship strong with Brett Favre

GREEN BAY, Wis. – Even though the Green Bay Packers have retired Brett Favre's No. 4 and inducted him into their hall of fame, it's still worth wondering where the relationship stands between the team and their legendary former quarterback.

There's no doubt the fans embraced Favre's return. That was evident by the ovation he received from the 67,000 strong who came to Lambeau Field on Saturday to salute him.

"It shows how much Favre meant to the fans," Packers president Mark Murphy said Monday. "And obviously I think our fans are really excited that he's back in the family."

Other aspects of the weekend have been parsed, too.

Among them was the fact Favre thanked nearly everyone (including the Packers' maintenance staff, many of them by name) but mentioned general manager Ted Thompson only in passing and never brought up his replacement, Aaron Rodgers. Favre also did not appear at the Packers Hall of Fame golf outing last Monday because he was in California to take his daughter, Breleigh, to visit Pepperdine University and appear at the ESPYs on Wednesday.

And what about that light purple shirt that seemed awfully close to Minnesota Vikings colors?

On the Packers' part, they denied Favre the use of Lambeau Field for his celebrity flag football game on Sunday that was instead held in Madison, Wisconsin.

Still, Murphy, who presided over Thompson's decision to block Favre's return and trade him to the New York Jets in 2008, doesn't see any lingering issues.

"I think this weekend went a long way towards making sure [of] that," Murphy said. "We want him to be like all of our other alumni. Bart Starr can't wait to come back. I think he was really moved mostly by the reception."

From a business standpoint, the Packers entered into a licensing agreement earlier this month with Favre in order to sell merchandise in their Lambeau Field store but have no other contract with him to make appearances on the team's behalf. In 2008, Murphy offered Favre a $20 million personal-services contract if he stayed retired.

"We're not going to do that, no," Murphy said.

Favre's next scheduled appearance in Green Bay is on Thanksgiving night, when his retired No. 4 is unveiled on the Lambeau Field fa├žade.

"I think things are very positive," Murphy said. "This weekend was very helpful. Obviously, he'll be here on Thanksgiving. He's going to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame [next summer, if elected], and we'll have him for a game, so I think things are very positive."