PEBBLE BEACH, California -- Friendly banter might define the atmosphere inside the ropes every year at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
But some pent-up fan frustration might best describe the inspiration Thursday for Kevin Streelman taking a share of the first-round lead with a 7-under-par 65 in the company of Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Streelman is from Winfield, Illinois. He grew up a Chicago Bears fan.
"Me being a life-long Bears fan, I was a little hesitant to buddy up to him too much," Streelman joked with reporters afterward. "But, no, I told him I respect the heck out of him. He's destroyed my Bears for the last 12 years out there and he's obviously one of the best ever."
Streelman teamed up with Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald to shoot 14-under 58 and take a three-shot lead in the team competition. They fared nine shots better than Rodgers and Madison native Jerry Kelly, who were tied for 63rd out of 156 teams with a 5-under 65 (Kelly shot even-par 72 on his own ball with two birdies and two bogeys and was tied for 98th).
"It's just fun hanging out and meeting these guys," Streelman said. "They are at the top of their sport and they just love golf so much. They really follow us and it's just a neat week and you make some nice relationships."
The pairing will move to Monterey Peninsula CC for Friday's second round before heading to Pebble Beach GL for Saturday's third round. The top 60 professionals and the top 25 teams will play Sunday's final round at Pebble Beach.
Madison's Steve Stricker and country music singer Toby Keith were also tied with the Kelly/Rodgers duo at 5-under 67. Stricker got to 4-under and one shot off the lead after back-to-back birdies at Nos. 10 and 11, but bogeyed the par-4 13th and parred the final five holes for a 69, good for a tie for 32nd.
Burlington native and CBS football analyst Tony Romo teamed with PGA Tour rookie Will Zalatoris to shoot 7-under 65, leaving them in a 21-way tie for 23rd place. Zalatoris shot 67 on his own ball.
David Kohler, CEO of Kohler Co., which owns Blackwolf Run and Whistling Straits, teamed with Minnesota native Tim Herron and shot 72 in the pro-am competition on opening day at Pebble Beach. They were tied for 149th.