Ex-Packer Green wants to return to NFL
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Ahman Green retired from the NFL in August 2011, but now the former Green Bay Packers running back wants his career to continue.
“I’ve got at least five years left in me to play football,” Green, 35, told FOXSportsWisconsin.com on Wednesday.
And it doesn’t even need to be at running back. Green, who rushed for 9,205 yards in his 12-year NFL career, is open to playing any position.
“I came into the league in special teams, and I’d have no problem doing that again,” Green said. “Playing special teams in kickoff coverage, punt coverage. Just put me anywhere. I’m a football player first. That’s something my dad always reminded me. ‘You’re a football player, not just a running back.’
“If a team wants to call me and show serious interest, I’ll be ready.”
Green, a third-round pick in 1998, has not taken a snap in the NFL since Jan. 10, 2010, in Green Bay’s playoff loss to the Arizona Cardinals.
“I wish I could’ve played more,” Green said. “I wish I could still be playing.”
After seven seasons with the Packers (2000-06) that included a 1,883-yard season in 2003, Green signed a free-agent contract with the Houston Texans. He was released by the Texans two years into a four-year deal and returned to the Packers midway through the 2009 season when an injury to running back DeShawn Wynn opened a roster spot.
Green returned to the Packers needing fewer than 50 yards to become the franchise’s all-time rushing yards leader. It took only until his second game that season to pass Jim Taylor, who had been the franchise leader since 1966.
But with the Packers committed to Ryan Grant as the featured running back in 2009, Green carried the ball only 41 times for 160 yards with one touchdown.
“My legs were there, they just had to give me more of an opportunity to play,” Green said. “They had younger guys, but age or not, it should be about the drive, determination and hard work. I really didn’t think they realized how good of shape I was in for my age.”
With no offers from NFL teams, Green spent time with the Omaha Nighthawks of the United Football League in 2010 and the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League in 2011.
Green, who has called Green Bay home since 2000, even while playing for Houston, Omaha and Montreal, is open for a return to any NFL team. However, given that he lives near Lambeau Field, he’s especially amenable to a third stint with the Packers.
“I know that I could help the team,” Green said. “I’d be happy to play along with Aaron (Rodgers) a few more years and help those guys win another Super Bowl. I would love to be around.”
In the event his NFL playing career does not continue as he hopes, Green has already started planning for his future. He recently became a co-owner of the Green Bay Blizzard, an Indoor Football League team that plays across the street from Lambeau Field.
“They wanted to bring in a football mind, basically, because all the other owners were just guys that love sports and had the money to help the team out,” Green said. “They wanted to bring along a guy like myself that had a little bit of football experience.”
Though Green has not yet taken an active role with the Blizzard, the rest of the owners have told him he can choose how much he’d like to involve himself.
“Of course they asked me to play, if I wanted to, so that is always open,” Green said. “Otherwise, to help out with coaching or anything, they said I could. Once I get comfortable, I think I’ll settle in, pop my head in and figure something out.
“The most likely option is helping them out with coaching in the next couple years. I know I’ll get that opportunity.”
In the meantime, he holds out hope some team might take a chance on a four-time Pro Bowl selection who is willing to play any position. But if no teams call, Green will try to settle into full-time post-football retirement.
“I can’t sit around and wait forever, so if it doesn’t happen, I’ve got to move on with my life,” Green said.
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