Packer Update

EDITORIAL: HARD TO ROOT FOR FAVRE

Persona non grata

While most of the country celebrates Brett Favre’s amazing success at age 40, Packer fans know better. They know one thing and one thing only – that if No. 4 displayed even a sliver of the control and focus during the last 10 years of his career in Green Bay that he’s shown during the first five months of his career in Minnesota, Cheeseheads of all ages would’ve been partying in the streets of Houston, Texas and Glendale, Arizona instead of tossing and turning in their sleep following brutal playoff losses to the Eagles in 2004 and to the Giants four years later. Yes, it hurts every time Favre the Viking throws a safe pass in lieu of unloading one of those season-ending prayers that Favre the Packer seemed to perfect in his later years with the Green and Gold.

Why is this version of Favre so much more careful with the football than the version of Favre that the entire state of Wisconsin used to know and love worship? The answer is quite simple – he finally has something to prove. For the first time since the early ’90s, the old gunslinger entered a season besieged by extreme doubt and heavy criticism. In fact, the din was so audible that even ESPN’s constant ass-kissing couldn’t drown it out. So Favre decided to prove to all the nay-sayers that an old dog can indeed learn new tricks. He simply decided not to throw interceptions. And it has absolutely nothing to do with coaching. Mike McCarthy and Tom Clements are about as good as it gets when it comes to working with quarterbacks. As far as Twiddle Dee Childress and Twiddle Dum Bevell are concerned, they’re far better at chauffeuring around a quarterback than they are at developing one.

It all comes down to accountability, or in the case of Favre and Green Bay, a lack thereof. While McCarthy was certainly demanding, how much could he really do by the time he took over as coach in 2006? Favre had long ago become bulletproof and he darn well knew it. How else can you explain all the people who blamed Mike Sherman’s fourth-and-one call, Ed Donatell’s 4th-and-26 defense and Bob Sanders’ inability to adjust against Plaxico Burress for excruciating playoff losses while at the same time being able to almost overlook two of the worst passes in postseason history? Let’s face it, if Favre could come out of those two games virtually unscathed, he was indeed as invulnerable as Superman. And while that’s a great trait for a Superhero, it’s not so desirable in a quarterback. The kid from Kiln needed to be humbled and that’s just what took place in the weeks leading up to the ’08 season.

That brings us to Favre and the Vikings. The more you watch this story unfold, the more you’re reminded of Damn Yankees – a musical comedy written in 1955 about a middle-aged fan named Joe Boyd who makes a deal with the devil in order to become a star outfielder for the Washington Senators. His dream is to help that struggling team beat the damn Yankees. The newly-coined Joe Hardy was willing to do almost anything to make that happen – include selling his soul. Fifty-five years later, Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings are starring in an updated version of the play. In this adaption, a middle-aged quarterback and a desperate organization are willing to do anything to win a Super Bowl. That includes lying (Favre), tampering (Childress and Bevell) and cheating (Kevin Williams and Pat Williams).

So far, so good for Minnesota. Favre has enjoyed arguably the best season of his long career and the team is one victory away from a trip to the Super Bowl. But just remember, the Senators didn’t win the World Series. Hardy ultimately decided that his prior life and his soul were more important than hoisting a championship trophy. And while Favre and the Vikings apparently have no such integrity, if there’s such thing as karma, they’ll run into their own version of the devil either tomorrow evening or in two weeks. So while it’s been difficult for the greatest fans in the NFL to watch what’s been happening for the past five months, just think of how good it’ll feel when it all comes to a bitter ending. Wouldn’t that be the best story ever?

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17 Comments to "EDITORIAL: HARD TO ROOT FOR FAVRE"

  1. Mark Jahn says:

    Excellent editorial on Brett Favre. You hit the feelings of many of us right on! Go New Orleans!

  2. MI_Pack says:

    …unless the ending involves Favre hoisting the Lombardi trophy for the Vikings, as much as I loathe to think about it happening.

    That being said, you encapsulated my feelings and the feelings of so many other Green Bay fans perfectly. Well done! And go Saints/Jets/Colts!

  3. wils says:

    *Slow clap

    You couldn’t have said it any better. Now only if you could convince those “Packer fans” that have undying love for the guy, no matter what he says, does, or plays for.

    Maybe I shouldn’t be calling them Packer fans.

  4. nerdmann says:

    Favre needs to be the one always in control. He couldn’t dictate to Ted Thompson, and he couldn’t dictate to McCarthy. That’s why he had to go. I believe the reason why alot of veterans had to go was due to the fact that they would get outside of the system and change plays with Favre in the huddle.
    The thing is, under a guy like Chilly, it might actually be BETTER if Favre changes the plays. See what I mean? Chilly is an idiot.
    But the main thing is, Chilly has backed down and kissed Favre’s ass so much, Favre doesn’t have to buck the system in Queensland to prove that his ego has more power than Chilly. He’s not being challenged, he’s being annointed. Plus he wants to stick it to TT, that’s clear.
    He never played this well in Green Bay, because of his ego, now he’s purposely playing better for the same reason.

  5. Aaron says:

    Wils:
    They stopped being Packer fans when Favre left. Football is the ultimate TEAM sport, but they are more interested in one player than any team. Actually, they probably stopped being Packer fans a long time ago, and Favre was the only thing that kept them watching in the first place. One has to wonder what these people will do with themselves when Favre finally does retire (through choice or injury). My guess is they will hold a grudge against TT and MM for the rest of their lives, and never root for the Packers again. Good riddance.

  6. Pack says:

    As bitter as it sounds, it’s true. And if he (cause it’s all about him, not the team) wins, that’ll be the end of it. If he doesn’t win, we’ll see him playing again next year.

  7. The Truth says:

    He threw fewer interceptions because he’s on a better team he trusts. The real explanation is simpler and more reasonable than your BS rant. But of course your motives are clear enough.

  8. Drifter says:

    There ar 53 players on an NFL team and an average of 145 plays per game, but the author wants to lay the blame for losses on a single player & single play?

    I’ve been a Packer fan for 50+ years. This article reaks of sour grapes.

    No matter what you may think of Brett Favre, win or lose, he always made a Packer game a thrill to watch, and he continues to thrill the crowds at Viking games.

    You should consider spending as much time creating a positive statement as you do finding fault and laying blame on an individual involved in a team activity.

    This article is an embarrassment to all Packer fans with a sense of fair play and sportsmanship.

  9. Pack says:

    You know what, i agree with Drifter. Brett made a big name for the Packers that we shouldn’t ignore. As bitter as i am for the change, i admit that it’s a pleasure to see him playing, whether he wins or lose.

  10. Chris K says:

    This is a refreshing take on the situation and shows just how much Favre’s two year plan to join the Vikings was all about him. First he demands the Packers essentially suspend all of their planning to submit to his last minute changing whims. Second, he uses the Jets as a stepping stone, manipulating his way into a false retirement that, third, allows him to join the Viking to try and get his “revenge”.

    This is Brett’s world, everyone else is just watching.

  11. nerdmann says:

    Brett sure made today’s game fun to watch. I’m sure the two interceptions and the fumble had nothing whatsoever to do with the loss.

  12. jayson says:

    “…if there’s such thing as karma, they’ll run into their own version of the devil either tomorrow evening or in two weeks. So while it’s been difficult for the greatest fans in the NFL to watch what’s been happening for the past five months, just think of how good it’ll feel when it all comes to a bitter ending. Wouldn’t that be the best story ever?”

    The Packers winning the Super Bowl would be the best story ever, but Favre choking again was pretty darn sweet!!

  13. JDonSports says:

    It is hard to root for Favre? Why?

    He gave you 16 yrs of great play at the toughest position in sports…and he did it every Sunday…his prime[’92-07] was twice as long as Bart Starr’s[’60-67]…the tragedy of Favre is that he became an icon of the NFL…a 3 time MVP…at a young age…and he was abandoned by MH and later by RW…he intimidated Rhodes and Sherman ..when he needed to be coached by them….while he was still in his prime, while Manning and Brady were the beneficiaries of top draft picks , free agent additions and cap management….Favre watched GB GMs add Jamal Reynolds, Robert Ferguson and Bow Jue in 2001, Ahmad Carroll, Joey Thomas, Washington and Sander in 2004….and cap killer contracts for Joe Johnson, KGB, Hunt and Diggs…and Favre watched Mike Wahle, Vonnie Holliday and Darren Sharper go for cap reasons…then saw best players Jevon Walker and Mike McKenzie do whatever it took to leave…

    Somehow Favre became a prima donna to GB fans…when he looked like a selfish athlete acting in his own best interests….then he got mad when TT delayed trading him then traded him to a non West Coast team in a different conference…amazing why he would be bitter? This just in, Favre was always a selfish athlete…he just had a common objective with GB fans for 16 yrs…

    Favre’s return from the tearful retirement, ended up netting GB a 3rd rounder that TT was able to package for Matthews….and his great performance netted Brad Childress an extension….GB fans should shake Favre’s hand for coming back…

    GB has a great young QB prospect in AR…who was able to mature, learn the offense and read defenses for 3 yrs…instead of being killed like Alex Smith was at SF or Aikman at Dallas in ’89….Aikman suffered shoulder and knee injuries that impacted his career…

    Favre was flaky and indecisive for several yrs in the offseason…so what? After 16 yrs of quality play…you cut him some slack…TT made the correct decision…although it did cost wins in 2008 and early in 2009…but it did net GB a top draft pick and Raji, Matthews in a trade…and GB goes on with 26 yr old AR…advantage GB…

    Minn was the only team that would have wanted Favre as a starter…it ran the West Coast offense…it had Bevell at QB coach….it needed a QB to go along with Peterson….Favre watched Warner almost beat Pitt last yr…amazing what a 38 yr old guy can do with great players around him….so Favre goes to Minn…but to hear the whine from GB fans…all he wanted to do was ‘stick it to Ted.’….then I love the crap about Favre ‘lying’ all last summer…while he played the Vikes for an increase in salary offers from $3mill in June to $12mill in Aug…

    I hope he screws up the Vikes…but I always wish him the best….not blind loyalty mind you….but just the loyalty that comes from an athlete that made my Sundays more enjoyable from Sept 1992 to Jan 2008…….as long as you wear Green and Gold you are great…but it you don’t, no one cares about you…so I guess GB fans are no different from any other fans…

  14. Chris K says:

    It was nice to see Mr. Favre once again snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

  15. glennardo says:

    Bottom line – the Pack is better off with Rodgers and the V-queens are better off with Favre. If #4 retires, TT will not get another chance at knocking him off his high horse. Predition – #4 retires and that will hurt TT even more.

    Go Pack Go

  16. wils says:

    @glennardo

    How the hell would that hurt TT more? The Packers would have a better chance at winning the division without him around. This petty “knocking him off his high horse” pales in comparison to winning games.

  17. Spanky says:

    It never ceases to amaze me….how upset fans on both sides have gotten about this. Favre was upset with how he was treated down the stretch. Happens in businesses all across the country when an aging employee feels the push out the door. The Packers decided they had a better long term solution. Happens at every business across the country. All the hard feelings on either side are unnecessary whining. The Packers were better off going with Rodgers. And Favre has the right to play. Big freaking deal.

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