Thursday, August 7, 2008

cheeseheads on Favre, Part I

Editor's note: With the end of the Brett Favre saga finally at hand, it seemed most appropriate to allow the thoughts on these issues to come from genuine Packer fans. Not a huge deal, perhaps, but I actually only know three Packer fans – The RB, his wife and Whit's friend Mitchell (I suppose the number goes to 4 since RB & Mrs. RB now have an infant son ... but for all we know, he could turn out to be a 'Skins fan or something weird like that). In any case, what follows is a guest blog from the aforementioned Mitchell dictated to brother Whit. Please to enjoy.

It looks as though the 2008 Brett Favre saga is coming to an end. The faceoff between the Green Bay Packers and their former superstar moved towards its closing with a trade last night to the New York Jets. Favre has been my favorite athlete since I was a 1st grader. Because of him, I am an avid Packers fan. However, I am extremely disappointed in the way No. 4 handled the fiasco.

No player is bigger than a franchise, especially one of the NFL's most storied teams, but Favre seemed to believe he was. He retired, decided to come back once, changed his mind, and choose to un-retire. AGAIN. Favre had the Packers players, coaches, and fans hanging on a limb, waiting for his next move. At some point, Green Bay had to escape from the run around and move on, and they did just that. The Packers altered their offensive scheme towards the strengths of Aaron Rodgers, drafted QB Brian Brohm with a 2nd round pick in the draft, and began "Life After Favre."

When Favre realized the Packers had moved on, he went T.O.-style on them. He demanded a trade, criticized personnel moves by GM Ted Thompson, and questioned the hiring of head coach Mike McCarthy. Brett must have forgotten who built and coached the team that was one play short of a Super Bowl in the 2007-2008 season; ironically, that play was a Favre interception in the NFC Championship game against the Giants. This diva attitude by Favre shocked me more than anything over past few months. In my mind, Brett was the tough, gritty, down-to-earth superstar, a rare combination in sports. Instead, he acted like the typical egotistical and selfish professional athlete, no better than a Randy Moss.

For a bad as the past few months have been for the relationship between Favre and the Packers, it is impossible to forget the 16 tremendous, courageous years Brett gave the team and its fans. His fearlessness, his love for Sundays will remain. As the drama winds down, a question arises: how will these months be viewed in ten years? I cannot answer this, but I hope the wounds are not too deep to heal. I hope Favre realizes his mistakes, I hope Green Bay flourishes in life without the legend, but most of all, I hope No. 4 stays a Green Bay Packer at heart. Green Bay is where he started; I wish it had been where he finished.

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