Thanks, Ted, for spending my money

He's no Adalius Thomas or Travis Henry, but at least by signing cornerback Frank Walker on Tuesday, Ted Thompson showed he's not afraid to spend the tax dollars supplied by Brown County taxpayers like PackerReport's Steve Lawrence.

As a resident of Brown County, I'd like to thank Ted Thompson for finally spending the money I give to him every time I go shopping.

For those of you who don't live around Green Bay or for those of you with a short memory, the renovated Lambeau Field is being paid for by Brown County residents with a half-percent sales tax.

The renovation, of course, was geared as a way of keeping the Packers financially competitive in the free-agent era. That's all well and good, assuming those dollars are spent.

They hadn't been spent until Tuesday, when Thompson and the Packers made the bold move of acquiring cornerback Frank Walker. Yep, the Chicago Bears and Indianapolis Colts are looking over their shoulders now, while the New York Giants — Walker's former team — are no doubt pondering a move to the Canadian Football League.

Sure, Walker's no Adalius Thomas, who could have given a much-needed playmaker and pass rusher to the defense.

Nor is he Joe Horn, who would have provided a much-needed playmaker on offense.

Nor is he Justin Griffith, who would have given the Packers a starting fullback perfectly suited for the zone scheme.

Nor is he Travis Henry, who would have capably replaced Ahman Green.

Nor is he Daniel Graham, who would have given the Packers a tight end who can both block and catch.

Nor is he Deon Grant or Michael Lewis, either of whom would have been upgrades over safety Marquand Manuel.

But at least the signing of Walker is something. It's a sign that Thompson is indeed searching for talent — heck, it's a sign he's awake — even if Walker comes from the free-agent equivalent of the thrift shop and Thompson paid for him by looking under the cushions of his office sofa-sleeper.

I've been the first to defend Thompson for his play-it-safe approach this offseason. Yes, the Packers had oodles of Monopoly money to play with, but so did most of the other teams in the league.

Flush with cash because of the soaring salary cap, most teams locked up their key players before they had a chance to hit the streets.

Thus, there was more money to spend but fewer quality players to buy than in any year in the history of free agency. So, the contracts given to some players this offseason is beyond ridiculous. The agent for cornerback Nate Clements, for instance, hoped to sign his client to a contract worth $50 million. The 49ers offered him $80 million.

Still, there were bargains to be had, with Griffith being the prime example.

Maybe Thompson was just too slow to react to the mind-numbing contracts awarded to the few marquee players available. Maybe Thompson is saving that money to acquire Randy Moss.

Either way, I'm happy Thompson signed someone on Tuesday. (What's his name again?) In fact, I'd like to give you, Ted, a hearty and heartfelt "thank you" for actually shelling out a few shillings for their intended purpose, rather than keeping all of your millions — make that, mine and the rest of Brown County's millions — tucked inside your mattress.

What you'll lose in comfort and support while dreaming up new and creative ways to not spend my money hopefully will be gained by eliminating the nightmare of having to watch Patrick Dendy as the nickel cornerback.

Lawrence is a regular contributor to Send comments to

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