Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What to do, Brett Farve?

I had to laugh at Kissing Suzy Kolber's take on the latest chapter in the Brett Favre retirement/un-retirement saga. The idea of anyone receiving a text saying "4′S BOYESH INTHUZIAZM FTW" is funny to me. And really, it got me thinking - maybe this situation isn't bad after all.

Initially, when rumors started swirling that Favre would come back even after his tearful retirement speech, I just wanted him to go away. It's not that I don't like Brett Favre - I think he is one of the great quarterbacks of the NFL (though stats may provide fodder for those who differ in opinion), and it was awesome that he had that small part in There's Something About Mary - I just hate nearly every journalist's undying fellation of him. We get it - in Wisconsin, he's an industry. He brings people in a very boring and fat state hope. He's a likable guy. Stop saying he is the child in all of us and there should be a church erected for worship of him (not exact quotes). After tribute after tribute, speculation if Aaron Rodgers would ever live up to Favre's legend (which is ongoing and will be until Rodgers is in the Hall of Fame or out of the NFL), and the presentation of the cover of Madden 09, everyone had accepted that #4 was out of the league.Then the issue with Favre's locker still being intact was brought up. I dismissed it as a non-story; in fact, it mostly was - the Packers eventually took out Brett's locker and gave it to him. Even though I hate that sort of speculative-even-if-it-is-true-I-don't-give-a-shit coverage, I figured it was just a by-product of the slow off season - hey, T.O. hasn't pulled anything besides missing a drug test this year.

But THEN came the story regarding Favre's supposed request to un-retire and return to the team. At first this pissed me off. The guy has made Green Bay wait every offseason for the past 3 years - holding their breath to see if their hero will come back. When he finally breaks it, and the Packers get to give Aaron Rodgers "his team," the fucker decides he changed his mind. Seriously? Did the thought of doing Sensodyne Toothpaste endorsements as your most exciting activity of the year propel you to pick up the ol' pigskin again?

I can understand why the Packers would - as they are rumored to - deny Favre the starting job after this back-and-forth will-he won't-he crap. From a simple employment standpoint - how would you feel if you were promoted, only to get demoted when the guy who held your previous position changed his mind? On top of all of this, Football has a lot more psychological subtleties than most people think - it helps the entire offense to know, without doubt, who the signal caller will be for the season. A clearly defined starter will not only get the practice reps he needs, but confidence in him will be all the more valuable.

However, this text shows that Favre really knows he has made a mistake. He wants to play next season - maybe two or more. And it looks like Green Bay won't let him do that - which leaves them two options - cut him, or trade him.

I became less annoyed by the situation and more intrigued when I read the Miami Herald's take:
Brett Favre seems like he wants to parachute back into the NFL. They ought to be drawing a big ''X'' in the middle of the Dolphins' huddle and coaxing him to a soft landing right here in Miami. Favre by most indications is a quarterback who needs to play again. Seems he has had a change of heart and wishes to recant his March 4 retirement, but Green Bay appears to have yanked away the welcome mat, like Lucy used to yank away the football just as Charlie Brown was about to kick it. But Miami is a team that needs a QB it can trust and rely on in 2008. Favre last missed a game in 1992. Seriously. Tomorrow's sunrise cannot be trusted and relied on like this dude.
Besides the cliched Peanuts analogy, I wholeheartedly agree. Miami is undergoing a pathetic three-quarterback race between the mediocre journeyman they intend to start (Josh McCown), the unproven commodity that led the team at the end of last year's sad season (John Beck), and their quarterback of the future (Chad Henne). Brett Favre would give them a top-10 quarterback for week 1. It wouldn't matter if he retired after the '09 season - it would still put them in a better place then they are now.

The point was also made that in the Packer's division, the NFC North, there is a dearth of quality quarterbacks. Could you imagine the Chicago Bears, or Detroit Lions going against the Pack with Favre at the helm? If I were a Green Bay fan, I think I'd have an identity crisis! Better yet - the Minnesota Vikings! Not only has Favre historically terrorized this franchise, but many speculate that with a quality quarterback, Minnesota could very well be the team to beat - their defense is no doubt top 10 with the acquisitions of S Madieu Williams and DE Jared Allen, and Adrian Peterson is the leagues best young running back. I've got to say - given my indifference to that division, I'd love to see how #4 in purple would play out.

So I guess my point is that there may be a reward for fans of the NFL having to hear the speculative drivel of if and where will Brett Favre play this season. If not, it just reminds some of us how much we can't wait for the season to start.

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