Brett Favre Feeling Minnesota?

And so The Favre Dance begins again. 

Brett FavreBack on August 1, 2008 I wrote a piece about Brett Favre and the Packers.  Namely, that I believed the Packers and Favre were better off together.  The flurry of talk at the time was the idea Favre and Green Bay might work out a deal for him to join the Minnesota Vikings.  But instead of going west to the Metrodome, he headed east to the Meadowlands.

Now, nearly one year later, Favre is once again in retirement saying he’s not coming out of retirement.  Well, he may not be saying anything of the sort.  It all depends upon which source you choose to believe.

In the span of one hour today, I heard the following reports – from sources – on two different syndicated sports talk shows and one local one here in Minneapolis:

  • Vikings owner Zygi Wilf has no interest in Brett Favre coming to the Vikings.
  • Vikings owner Zygi Wilf would be elated to have Brett Favre in a Vikings uniform.
  • Brett Favre has no interest in coming out of retirement.
  • Brett Favre would like to come back and play for the Vikings.

Who are these sources?  If the Huffington Post came out and said “Sources say Brett Favre considering playing soccer for Argentina,” half of America would believe it.  Maybe slightly more than half.

I used to have great admiration for Brett Favre.  If there’s two things I love in the NFL, it’s the Chicago Bears and watching Brett Favre.  I’ve shortened the list to just the Bears.

While many fans had already grown tired of Favre during last off-season’s tango with the Packers, Vikings and whatever other teams sources listed as possible destinations for the future Hall-of-Famer, I wasn’t in that camp.  I am now.

Favre has become a professional boxer in shoulder pads.  It’s the retirement tour that never ends.  He’s retired.  He’s back.  He’s retired.  He may be back.  Nope, he’s staying retired.  Wait, he’s back.  Or is he?

What’s most interesting in this, like last year, is the reaction from Vikings fans.  Last year there seemed to be a fairly even split between those suggesting they’d burn their season tickets and those salivating for Favre in purple.  The ticket-burning bunch . . . please.  You’re telling me you’ll spend thousands of dollars on season tickets only to burn them?  Strong statement!  Well done.  And who loses?  Not the Vikings.  They’ve already got your money.  Remember fans:  Please burn responsibly.

This year, however, there seems to be a markedly different reaction coming from many of those same flame-throwing Vikings fans.  The Vikings offense looks to be missing one primary piece: A great quarterback.  Incumbent Tarvaris Jackson and incoming Sage Rosenfels fall short of great.  Some here will say they don’t reach adequate.  Others insist Sage Rosenfels is an exotic spice.

In the shadows you’ll hear “pssst……hi there……hey, I hope I’m not being a bother and please tell me if I am……whattaya hear on Favre?  Is he coming here?  Boy, I sure hope so.  I threatened to burn my tickets but I really didn’t mean it.”

So the real questions here . . .

  • Does Brett Favre still qualify as great?
  • Is Brett Favre the answer for the Vikings?

Favre’s days of being great are behind him.  While a healthy Favre is still a better option than either Jackson or Rosenfels, no one is going to confuse the 2009 Brett Favre with the one from 1996.  But with the weapons he’ll have at his disposal, perhaps all the Vikings need is someone with experience, poise and leadership to guide this franchise back to being a Super Bowl contender.

Having said all of that, I’d like nothing better than seeing The Favre Circus come to town.  I’m a fan of great theatre.  And in a town known for remarkable theatre, Favre would shine brighter than the Guthrie.

Will Favre’s almost certain arrival be tantamount to Henry V?  Or will it be more akin to Coriolanus

It’s definitely not The Importance of Being Earnest.

Filed Under: MediaMinneapolisMinnesotaNFLPro FootballSports

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About the Author: Christopher Gabriel is the host of the cleverly named Christopher Gabriel Program on AM 970 WDAY in Fargo, North Dakota. You can hear him weekdays from 9 to Noon. As a writer and humorist, his work has been been published online by the Chicago Sun-Times, Reuters and publications within the Sun-Times News Group.

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  1. territerri says:

    The whole thing is a curiosity to me, at most. Generally speaking, I don’t get passionate about any pro sports team. But I would actually find it rather pathetic if Brett Favre ended up being the answer to this teams’ problems.

    [Reply]

  2. Bruce in Minnesota says:

    I’d love to sign him up for one season, with a single proviso: Game #1 of the Regular Season he does not play.

    There’s no way the Vikings should facilitate Favre breaking Jim Marshall’s consecutive regular season games played string.

    [Reply]

  3. Bruce in Minnesota says:

    Oh, and just so you know: Da Bears had a great team one season: 1984.

    –And that was because of Buddy Ryan.

    Mike Ditka was and will always be a weenie.

    Longtime fans know the Black and Blue division will never be dominated by a single team (for any length of time) the way the Vikings ruled it during the Bud Grant era.

    [Reply]

  4. CGabriel says:

    Hi Bruce – thanks for stopping by! I have to tell you, I’m not feeling a lot of love coming from you toward Mike Ditka. I sense . . . annoyance?

    Oh, hey, help me out here because I tend to get a bit fuzzy with details: How many Super Bowls did the Vikings win under Bud Grant (or any coach) when they ruled the Black and Blue? Longtime fans – and I mean those of us who remember pre-Super Bowl NFL days – also know the Bears have won eight (8) NFL Championships in addition to the 1985 Super Bowl. My point: The Bears (and the Packers) ruled the league long before the Vikings were even in the league.

    There’s no question the Vikings have always had a strong franchise. And certainly they had their way with the division for many years. I still remember the first Bears game I ever saw. Wrigley Field, October 11, 1970: Minnesota 24, Bears 0.

    When “experts,” fans and media members from around the country talk about great teams over the years, that Bears team you mentioned is always in the first paragraph along with some of the great teams from the Steelers, 49ers, Cowboys and a few others. But with all due respect, Bruce – the Vikings need to improve upon their 0-4 Super Bowl record before they can even get to the discussion’s doorstep.

    [Reply]

  5. PhillyPat says:

    I’d rather not rehash my disdain for the unwarranted attention all this brings to Mr. Favre. So I’ll only add this to the comments I made to your August 1, 2008 blog…

    Oh please, not again, I’m begging.

    [Reply]

  6. de-I says:

    It’s so sad to see an athlete just hang on because they can’t admit it’s over.

    Don’t the Vikings have a good young quarterback?

    [Reply]

  7. CGabriel says:

    The QB you’re speaking of is Tarvaris Jackson. He’s simply not developed the way they thought he would. While he’s shown flashes here and there, that’s all it’s been…flashes.

    This city right now – it’s Brett Favreapalooza, for the most part. The most interesting reaction is coming from our friends across the St. Croix River. Packers fans seem genuinely divided and confused over what’s happening.

    I’m told the matter of Favre and the Vikings will be taken up at the U.N.

    [Reply]

  8. Bruce in Minnesota says:

    I just thought we’d talk about our lifetime, Mr. Gabriel. I’m older than you, and I don’t remember much about pro football before 1961 (when the Vikes first came on the scene). I’m trying to remember who they played in their very first regular season game ever…do you happen to know? If I remember correctly (and I was only 11 at the time), the backup quarterback came in and rallied the team to victory. But that’s about all I remember…oh, wait, the expansion team wins 37-13 over the longstanding established NFL powerhouse in an iconic game between the two franchises…kind of set the stage for their rivalry over the years. Wish I could remember who the opponent was…

    [Reply]

  9. CGabriel says:

    I could be wrong, Bruce, but I have a feeling it’s the same opponent that beat the Vikings 52-35 on December 17 to close out the 1961 season.

    Can we go down a literary path for a moment? There’s this very cool book (and play) called The Shadow Thieves. In it, Philonecron steals the shadows from children to build an army hoping to overthrow Hades. Do you ever think the Vikings are the NFL version of Philonecron and instead of children’s shadows, they steal the hearts from their fans hoping they’ll follow them anywhere, no matter the fact they come up short every time they get close to the big prize? Actually, come to think of it — it’s working. 🙂

    [Reply]

  10. Mike says:

    He’s like the uncle from Napoleon Dynamite who can’t give it a rest.

    [Reply]

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