Want to see a list of headlines on ESPN.com? I'll save you the trouble:
• Favre may show up at camp • Favre 'clears it up' in interview with Fox • Few fans attend Favre rally in Milwaukee • Pack fans rally, calling for Favre reinstatement • Pack won't release Favre • Sources: Favre seeks unconditional release • Favre itching to return to field • Packers: Favre officially on reserve/retired list • No comeback for Madden '09 cover boy • Teary Favre says 'It's over' • Favre's official farewell: Thursday in Green Bay • Packers QB Rodgers seeks own path to stardom • Packers to retire Favre's No. 4 during opener
Mood swing? Hardly.
This is the cunning cat-and-God game Favre is playing with the Packers, and indeed, the entire world. Some say the years of abuse and cortisone have warped his mind. Others say it's the concussions.
Still, more point to his history of painkiller abuse (a few even raise the issue of the low test-scores in Kiln, Mississippi, but I digress). But the truth is that we mere mortals cannot fathom the thought-process of a Higher Power.
For the Lord of Lambeau giveth, as Michael Strahan with his single-season sack record can surely attest—and the Lord taketh away, as he did when snatching victory from the jaws of defeat on countless occasions.
Both times, fans and haters alike questioned what they saw—doubted their faith. But they no longer have reason to.
As of today, Brett Favre stands tall as your all-time career leader in touchdown passes (and interceptions). But his lackluster wide receivers deserve much of the blame for the interception record, since they never could seem to beat their man.
Guys like Sterling Sharpe, Bubba Franks, Antonio Freeman, and Javon Walker weren't even qualified to be in the NFL, let alone as starting receivers. Each of these heartless, lesser men failed to fight for catchable balls each and every game.
Why, you ask? Well, even Jesus had Judas. And it took a man as great as Favre to persevere through such hardship.
Alternatively, maybe Favre was so brilliant that he saw a benefit in leading the league in interceptions twice and placing in the top five for interceptions nine times.
For you see, he knew that his apparent tendency to throw interceptions—which was entirely intentional, mind you—pulled opposing linebackers and safeties out of the box, urging them to sit back in coverage zones.
Then, and only then, could Favre hand the ball off to his notoriously average running backs—Dorsey Levens, Ahman Green, and Ryan Grant among them—allowing them to turn their otherwise insufficient skills into positive yardage.
In this way, Favre not only won games, but he allowed players like Samkon Gado to have a job in the NFL; surely sparing him a life of crime and or welfare dependency. Years later, most of us have yet to think so far ahead as Favre had years ago.
But Favre was so great, he still managed to force over 440 touchdowns down the throats of these utterly hapless Green Bay receivers. At 38-years old, he managed to line up passes to wideout routes so accurately that Green Bay receivers like Greg Jennings and Donald Driver found themselves at the top of the league's yards-after-catch list last season.
Despite having the good sense to keep Favre playing in Green Bay until now, Packers' brass never cared enough to surround Favre with a talented team. His Favreship was forced to toil in trenches behind inadequate and undersized linemen (fortunately, Favre's chiseled frame never needed a burly or dirty line to be successful, unlike Troy Aikman and John Elway).
His defensive line, the one part of the team often hailed as consistently great, was only so good because of its constant practice with Brett Favre. I am sure that every great Packers sack-master, from Reggie White to Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila to Aaron Kampman, understands that just nearly tackling Favre in practice means being the best defensive pass-rushing force in all of the NFL.
What quarterback, or offensive lineman, could stand up to a defensive end trained at attempting to sack the immortal Brett Favre? Just one: Brett Favre!
What's more, Brett Favre's much-maligned reputation for under-performing in domed venues was really a protest to return American Football to the great outdoors—the way it was originally intended to be played.
His difficult-to-catch fastballs were actually meant to stick to the frozen hands of receivers, shattering fast-forming ice and ensuring completions. Unfortunately, this meant Favre was largely unsuccessful at road venues in warm-weather areas like Tampa Bay. But it was playing his best before the Cheesehead faithful in Lambeau, the true believers, that was always most important.
Favre never lost sight of the goal. And that goal wasn't to win the Super Bowl, or he would have retired long ago. The goal was never to win the MVP, or he would have stopped after his first or second, and certainly his third. The goal wasn't to break the all-time touchdown, starts by a quarterback, or wins by a quarterback records, or he would have stayed retired during this most recent offseason.
The goal was always to save us. To save us. Think about that for a minute.
No, I don't know how remaining undecided on retirement will save us. I do not understand how his text messages (which were ironically intercepted) will reveal his divine plan to us. I do not even know why he insists on keeping lifetime backup Aaron Rodgers in limbo.
Come to think of it, I don't know why he called out Javon Walker for holding out for more money—I thought that was kind of lame.
And the whole Randy Moss thing. I mean, Packers fans hate Moss, don't make them change their minds. They're notoriously stubborn.
Oh, and that whole locker room controversy, that was just ridiculous. I really wish he would've just squashed that when he had the chance, but getting back to the point...
We must accept that we may never understand His way.
Favre is what we need in our world. We must all promise ourselves to continue to read every scrap of Favre-media we can find: watch every podcast, listen to every interview, watch every highlight...
...Or we may lose Favre from our daily lives. And that would be the greatest tragedy.
I implore all of you, please continue to consume every bit of Favre you can, just like you've done for the last so-many years. Keep up the good work, and Favre will never fade from our world.
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