Remmel: Holmgren Way Marks Its Anniversary As Packers Duel With 'Hawks


Mike Holmgren's mind, it is safe to assume, will be firmly fixed on the task at hand when he and his Seahawks entertain the Green Bay Packers in Seattle's Qwest Field Monday night.

If it were not for such a significant assignment, one of many in his bid for a second consecutive berth in the Super Bowl, the Seahawks' head coach could be celebrating an "anniversary" of sorts.

Specifically, that would involve remembering the dedication of "Holmgren Way," a street in Ashwaubenon, a bustling village contiguous to Green Bay. The honor was conferred upon him during his seventh and final year as head coach of the Packers.

Originally named Gross Avenue, it was formally renamed Holmgren Way during ceremonies conducted on Nov. 20, 1998.

Poetically, "Holmgren Way" intersects Lombardi Avenue just one block east of Lambeau Field, a historic junction.

Grateful Green Bay/Ashwaubenon residents and Packers fans thus paid public thanks to the monolithic Scandinavian for leading the Green and Gold to back-to-back Super Bowl appearances following the 1996 and 1997 National Football League seasons.

And, of course, for providing the Packers faithful with their third Super Bowl victory...their first in 29 years.

Also for presiding over a 25-game winning streak in Lambeau Field, the second longest such home skein in the annals of professional football.

Time having a habit of flying, it may not seem possible but Holmgren currently is in the eighth and final year of the contract he signed upon arriving in Seattle following the 1998 season - a reportedly $32 million document.

As noted, he left behind a substantial legacy in departing Titletown.

Other than the legendary Vince Lombardi, Holmgren remains the only coach in the team's srtoried history to lead the Packers to a Super Bowl victory.

Along the way, he escorted Green Bay to seven consecutive winning seasons, six playoff berths, three division titles and two National Football Conference championships.

To be sure, however, the highlight of his tenure was the Packers' 35-21 conquest of the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXI at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans.

And, appropriately, with the wind chill registering a frigid 0 to 10 degrees below zero during a three-hour tour of the city, an estimated 200,000 enthusiastic fans welcomed the Packers home from the world championship the next day (Jan. 27, 1997).

Another 60,000 jammed Lambeau Field a day later for the official program hailing the new world champions.

{sportsad300}With memories such as these, Holmgren obviously has cause to remember his highly successful stay in Green Bay. And, of course, Holmgren Way.

Conversely, Titletown has good reason to remember the 58-year-old San Franciscan and his contributions.

Beyond such matters, Holmgren has been agreeable to returning to his old "home town" when the need arises - in addition, of course, to when the NFL schedule calls for his Seahawks to engage the Packers.

Most recently, in July of 2005, he was back in Green Bay to induct one of his Super Bowl own, running back Edgar Bennett, into the Packers Hall of Fame.

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