For the Minnesota Vikings, the 2009 season has the potential to be spectacular—or spectacularly awful.
It all hinges on the dinged-up right wing of the greatest passer in the history of the NFL.
Ten days ago, without any inside information from anonymous sources within the Minnesota Vikings locker room, I wrote the following:
Sadly, I don’t think this is the end of Brett Favre. After all, Michael Jordan retired three times. Compared to MJ, Brett’s got one more “un-retirement” left.
Like catching fish in a barrel...proof’s here, in case you don’t believe me.
In two years’ time, Brett Favre has gone from being one of the most beloved athletes to one of the most polarizing, thanks in large part to his on-again, off-again retirements, and his desire to play against the Green Bay Packers after playing for them for 17 years.
I feel for the die-hard Packers fans. I’m a longtime Denver Broncos fan, and if John Elway had decided to come out of retirement and play for the Oakland Raiders or Kansas City Chiefs 10 years ago, I would have been livid.
Vikings fans, I feel for you too. The hype and expectations associated with Favre donning the purple and yellow will ultimately exceed the results, I’m afraid.
What are the expectations? Simply put, if the Vikings don’t make it to the Super Bowl with Favre under center, then his addition would qualify as a failure. There is no other way to say it.
The Vikings were 10-6 last year and won the NFC North division with Gus Frerotte and Tarvaris Jackson handing the QB position. They have one of the most dynamic running backs in the NFL in Adrian Peterson. Their offensive line is strong. Their defense is one of the best at stopping the run.
To top it off, the Vikings’ schedule doesn’t appear to be challenging.
With all that working in their favor, the Vikings then add the most prolific passer in NFL history to their team.
Of course, the Brett Favre the Minnesota Vikings get in 2009 isn’t the same guy who had five straight seasons with 30 or more TD passes (1994-98). He faded down the stretch last year and needed surgery on his right biceps this summer.
On top of being fresh off of biceps surgery, Favre also revealed that he has a tear in the rotator cuff of his throwing shoulder.
Other than that, he’s perfectly fit and capable of leading a Super Bowl contender for 16 games!
At least the Vikings have some depth at the QB position now, just in case Favre’s shoulder doesn’t last the season, or something else happens.
Sage Rosenfels, acquired by the Vikings back in February for a fourth-round draft pick and then signed to a two-year extension, will back up Favre.
Jackson, who went 3-1 in the Vikings’ final four regular season games last year and was the “QB of the future” in Minnesota not that long ago, will seemingly be released later this week, making John David Booty, who has supposedly performed well in training camp, the No. 3 QB.
How the 2009 season plays out for the Minnesota Vikings and Favre is anyone’s guess, but only one outcome will make fans believe this saga was worth the time and energy spent on it.
Anything short of a Super Bowl berth, and this chapter in the Brett Favre legacy and the history of the Minnesota Vikings will be forgettable.