Another offseason of indecision, another visit to Dr. James Andrews, another surgery, another summer of ESPN's hit series “The Favre Watch.” In the end it's hard to argue that it's not all well worth it if it results in another season of watching Favre on the football field.
Whether you believe the Packers made the right choice, in dealing with Favre’s waffling, moving on with Aaron Rodgers. That Ted Thompson forced Favre out of Green Bay a year to soon, 6-10 in 2008 under Rodgers after going 13-3 under Farve in 2007. Or that the Packers should have just traded Favre to the Vikings initially netting two 1st round picks instead of just a 2nd rounder. No one can honestly say that they don’t enjoy watching Favre play the game with the kind of wild exuberance and imagination that most of us lose somewhere during our journey from child to adult.
Favre loves to play football, always has, and we love to watch him play, always have. Since he entered the game on September 20th, 1992 replacing an injured Don “the magic man” Majkowski during a game against the Cincinnati Bengals, he has marveled.
Beginning the drive at his own 8 yard line trialling 23-17 with 1:07 left Farve lead the Packers to a come back victory by throwing a touchdown pass with just 13 seconds remaining on the clock. Earlier in the game the crowd had chanted for Farve to be pulled from the game after he fumbled for a fourth time. Then and there Farve's NFL legend was born, there it was the good, the bad, and the unbelievable all in one.
Favre has captured the hearts of many a football fan, and not just Green Bay Packers, New York Jets, and now Minnesota Vikings fans. Even fans of the teams Farve continually worked his magic against could not help but become fans of such a genuine character on the field even as he crushed their dreams of playoff wins and Super Bowl appearances.
I was once on vacation in Cancun Mexico, where I ran into a couple Detroit Lions fans who despite his repeated domination of their team on the field affectionately referred to Farve as the “gun slinger.” Stating simply, "you gotta love the gun slinger." And, quite simply, that is why Favre has become the face of the NFL not just the Packers, the Jets, or the Vikings.
He plays the game with an unbridled enthusiasm that is rare in an age of athletes who are more worried about keeping up with their twitter accounts than they are with their performance on the field. Even though Farve has made well over 100 million dollars playing football, and has displayed some of the same egotistical flaws that are common among professional athletes, he is still beloved.
He is still viewed as an old fashioned blue collar worker, I mean think about it. He has played 309 consecutive games including the playoffs despite not needing the money or having to worry about losing his position due to injury. Favre just wants his team to win, and staying in the game is the best way he knows how to ensure that victory.
So, all the talk of Favre returning just to seek revenge against his Packers’ nemesis Ted Thompson is nonsense. Sure Farve loved beating the Packers twice in 2009, I’m sure he took more personal enjoyment in those victories than the rest. But, I’m also sure that if he could have traded those victories against the Packers in the regular season for two more victories in the post season he would have done so without hesitation.
Farve plays the game for one reason, he loves to win football games, some might even say he is addicted to it. Chasing another Super Bowl title to Farve is akin to a heroin addict chasing the dragon. They need it and they will do anything to get it, a heroin addict will steal from his own mother to score his fix. Farve demands a trade after Packers GM Ted Thompson fails to send a 4th round pick to the Raiders for WR Randy Moss. Why? Not because their simply selfish, but because they need it that bad. Farve needs another Super Bowl, and he simply saw Moss as the most likely means to that end.
Now the Vikings have become the most likely means to that end for Farve. And, for that reason regardless of the ankle surgery Farve reportedly needs, in order to enable his body to make it through another grueling NFL season. When the games begin in September Brett Lorenzo Farve will be under center for the Vikings. He will likely miss most of training camp once again, while Tarvarius Jackson and Sage Rosenfels hold down the fort. There is no way he retires this year maybe next year but not in 2010.
The Vikings have added enough talent to make Farve believe he has an even better shot at winning the Super Bowl in his second season of work with the likes of Adrian Peterson, Sidney Rice, Vinsanthe Shiancoe, and Percy Harvin.
The Vikes lost key backup Chester Taylor at running back, but drafted Toby Gerhart to replace him, and could still be interested in former Eagle Bryan Westbrook who would give them a dangerous receiving threat out of the backfield on 3rd downs.
They also have quarterback Joe Webb, who will play receiver giving Brett a new weapon to work with. Defensively they shored up the cornerback position signing Lito Shepard and drafting Chris Cook. While grabbing defensive end Everson Griffen, linebacker Nate Tripplett, and offensive lineman Chris DeGeare in the draft each of whom add quality depth to their respective position groups.
The Vikings are in position to win their first Super Bowl in 2010 and that is something Farve would not miss for the world. Thus, Grandpa Farve will be leading the Vikings into battle for at least one more season. And, we would all be wise as football fans to get to at least one of his games. Farve is the NFL equivalent to the NBA’s Michael Jordan, a player that every fan of the sport should see play live in person at least once. We will all have at least 16 more chances to do so in 2010, and I for one won’t be passing up the opportunity.