GREEN BAY, Wisc. — Ted Thompson considered himself a scout, first a foremost, and he wasn't ready to walk away from that.
The Green Bay Packers announced that Thompson, their general manager the past 10 years, has signed a multi-year contract extension to remain in the same position.
"I'm a scout," Thompson said. "That's what I do and that's what I enjoy. As a scout, you're always looking for that diamond that nobody else can find."
He'll continue doing so for at least two more years. But when asked just how many years deal was for, Thompson declined to say, then quipped: "I am not a real specific guy."
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That's Thompson: A man of few words and something of a lone wolf who often is spotted scouting games on the road by himself, tuning his keen scouting eyes on football players coast to coast.
Thompson has built one of the NFL's most admirable and stable franchises, and his shining-star player — Aaron Rodgers — remains a symbol not only of his eye for talent but also for Thompson's will, having weathered the dark final days of the Brett Favre era as Rodgers was poised to take over.
Since then, the franchise has steadied considerably, but for Thompson, he wasn't ready to ride off into the sunset just because the team is on such strong footing.
"It's easy to say I'm going to ride off into the sunset, but I have people that I'm responsible for here, people I've hired," he said.
One of those people is Packers head coach Mike McCarthy, whose contract runs up following the 2015 season, for whom Thompson said a new contract is important.
"It's a very high priority," Thompson said after the two sides talked about a deal for McCarthy in the spring.
But for now, Thompson will continue doing what he has been doing — save for perhaps taking a few extra trips to see his family in Texas.
"I haven't been very good about getting back there as much as I like," he said. "I'd like to try to get down there more. Not for months at a time, but more."
Team president Mark Murphy and Thompson have been talking for some time — "in general terms," Thompson said — about him signing a new deal. Will Thompson ever be beloved in Green Bay? Perhaps not, but he has built a strong foundation for the team, one that has remained strong despite some of his former front-office coworkers taking jobs with other franchises, which also is a testament to the strength of the Packers and other teams' desire to mimic their formula.
Thompson, 61, said he's in good health, enjoys what he does and thanked the Packers for their continued commitment to him.
"I feel great," he said. "I'm honored that Mark Murphy & the organization would like me to stay on. This place means a lot to me."
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