Packers Manager Steps Down

ByArnie Stapleton

G R E E N   B A Y, Wis., Feb. 1, 2001 -- Ron Wolf, the architect of the Green BayPackers' return to the Super Bowl in the mid-1990s, is retiring asexecutive vice president/general manager.

Coach Mike Sherman will take over in a dual role after Wolf'slast day June 1.

Wolf had three years left on his contract and will serve them asa consultant to the team.

"We've had a great ride here," an emotional Wolf said as hecomposed himself at a news conference at Lambeau Field. "We'veaccomplished a lot."

Sherman, who's been a head coach for just one season, said hewas honored and humbled by his new responsibilities.

He said he's learned a lot from Wolf and has plenty more tolearn.

"I do not assume to be Ron's equal in regard to personnelmatters," Sherman said. "He's is the very best. … But I amRon's equal in regards to passion for the Green Bay Packers."

Wolf Led Team to Superbowl

Wolf, 62, joined the Packers in late 1991, and hired MikeHolmgren as coach the next season. Wolf also acquired quarterbackBrett Favre in a trade with Atlanta and signed Reggie White as afree agent.

After 25 years of futility following the glory days of VinceLombardi, the Packers climbed to the top of the NFL under Wolf.Green Bay reached the Super Bowl in consecutive seasons, beatingNew England in the '97 Super Bowl for its first championship since1967 and then losing to Denver in the '98 title game.

The Packers won three straight NFC Central titles starting in1995, and also own the NFL's second longest home-field winningstreak at 25 straight regular season games. The streak startedSept. 17, 1995, and ended with a loss to the Minnesota Vikings Oct.5, 1998.

Holmgren resigned after the 1998 season, the last time thePackers reached the playoffs.

Wolf hired Ray Rhodes, but fired him after an 8-8 season. Wolfsaid the team lacked discipline under Rhodes, who was replaced byMike Sherman, a former protege of Holmgren.

Sherman guided Green Bay to a 9-7 record last year, but thePackers failed to qualify for the postseason.

Wolf was known for having an eye for talent, with 75 percent ofhis draftees since 1993 still playing in the NFL at the end of the1999 season.

Career Began in 1963

Wolf began his NFL career as a scout for the Oakland Raiders in1963. He joined the expansion Tampa Bay Buccaneers as vicepresident in 1975 before returning to the Raiders as playerpersonnel director in 1978. He left the Raiders in 1990 for asimilar position with the New York Jets.

In 1991, while with the Jets, he spotted Favre on the Falcons'sideline and saw something in him that few had.

Wolf's first order of business as Green Bay's general managerwas to fire Lindy Infante and replace him with Holmgren. Next, hesent a first-round pick to the Falcons for Favre, who became athree-time MVP and the cornerstone of Wolf's rebuilding project.

On April 6, 1993, he lured White to Green Bay and the pieceswere in place for the Packers' return to glory.

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