DE PERE – The life of an NFL running back is not glamorous if viewed through a garage door.
To be sure, Eddie Lacy had a lot of cool football things, like cleats and T-shirts and hats. But there were also well-used video games and coffee mugs and cans of Campbell's soup and Tide laundry detergent. A carry-on bag with a New Orleans baggage tag, some lamps and dishes, and a couple Minnesota Vikings shirts. Really, Eddie?
Lacy, who signed a free-agent contract with the Seattle Seahawks in March, closed out his time as a Green Bay Packers running back Friday with a garage sale at his former De Pere residence. Lacy said he would donate proceeds from the sale to an unnamed charity and any leftover items to Freedom House, which provides emergency housing to families, helping them find permanent housing and employment.
Freedom House might get the short end of this deal because Lacy tweeted at 3 p.m. that the garage was empty after just four hours and the only thing left in the house was a six-piece sofa sectional. The planned two-day sale was going to be one day shorter.
Lacy, himself, was a no-show, which was ironic because he postponed the sale in April when he couldn't get to Green Bay because of travel problems.
"He doesn't like the attention," said Melissa Martinez of De Pere. She said she hung out with Lacy from time to time and was there to buy a few things.
Lacy would have received plenty of attention had he shown up. From the time Nathan Plitzuweit arrived before 9:30 a.m. for the 11 a.m. sale, Packers faithful dutifully lined up on the sidewalk along Ridgeway Boulevard until there were hundreds snaking up the street and around the corner. Being mostly Wisconsinites, they were patient and made an effort to stay on the sidewalk and off neighbors' lawns.
The Rottier family of De Pere was about midway down the line.
"We are just kind of curious," said Betty Rottier.
"They are huge Packers fans," she said, pointing to her husband, Tom, and granddaughter, Kira July. "I am married to him, so I have to be."
They liked seeing Lacy in the Packers backfield and aren't looking forward to him in the uniform of the Seahawks, who will play at Lambeau Field in this year's season-opening game.
"When he was good, he was good," July said.
Those who had dealings with him said he was a good guy, too.
Bonnie Boes of Oconto met Lacy during a sponsored Packers vacation a couple years ago. They played Jenga, which he seemed to like, so she gave him the game. She wondered if it would be included in the sale, and there it was front and center on a table in the garage. Boes was third in line, so she knew she'd get it back.
"It's mine again," she said after making her purchases.
Her haul also included a pullover Under Amour shirt, a coffee mug, stocking cap and a Lacy-worn hoodie.
"My husband's been dying for one of these," she said.
Jake Franczek drove two hours from Vulcan, Mich., near Iron Mountain. He got used and new cleats, a jug of Tide, a couple Rashan Michel dress shirts and other odds and ends. The cleats were in his size, so he will probably wear the new ones. The shirts, with an 18.5-inch collar, were not.
"If I can get the (used) cleats signed, I will show them off in my house," he said.
Tide detergent had a sponsorship agreement with Lacy, a former Alabama Crimson Tide running back, thus the several large bottles of Tide at the sale. Those were quickly scooped up, including by Martinez and her aunt.
"They are $5, plus it's for a good cause," she said.
Included in the sale were a number of videos and video games, including most of the main sports games, such as NCAA Football 13, Madden 25 and FIFA14.
Lacy's favorite was Dragon Ball Z, a Japanese anime series, Martinez said, and sure enough Dragon Ball Z was on the video game rack.
Plitzuweit, who was first in line, gets the last word.
"He did a good job for the community. It's good having him do one more thing," he said.
Being first, Plitzuweit had his pick of everything. He chose a clock, a hat, a Nintendo game controller socks, and a pair of game-worn cleats.
"They have some dirt on them. I don't know if it's from Lambeau Field, but I'm hoping it is," he said.
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