The tale of Ted Thompson's historical blunder can be reduced to one word: fiasco. That's what he started when Brett Favre, one of the best quarterbacks ever to throw a football, decided to flip-flop on his decision to retire.
Yes, Favre should make up his mind before he calls the press conference next time, but Thompson has handled this pivotal situation with astounding incompetence. Here's a quick breakdown of his mistakes in the Favre comeback saga.
First, Favre announces he wants to come out of retirement and play for the team he's led for 16 seasons. Any normal, sane GM would happily accept the news and get Favre ready for training camp.
What does Thompson do? He says that he'd rather have a second-string QB of Grossman-like skill start for the Packers than the three-time MVP that led Green Bay to one Super Bowl already, and would happily get them to another.
At this point, I have to mention the amazing excuse that Ted used for his illogical decision. He wants to protect Brett Favre's legacy. Brett threw for over 4,000 yards last season, while at an age most players retire before. His legacy doesn't need protecting, and if it did, it wouldn't be Thompson's responsibility in the first place.
Next, Thompson instigates an investigation of the Minnesota Vikings because Favre was chatting with a good friend who just happened to work for them. Thanks to this scandal, Brett is now essentially blocked from playing in the NFC North. Also, Thompson refuses to release Favre, and he is even hesitant to trade him to a halfway-decent team.
To top it off, the Packers say that if Favre returned to them, he would be sitting the bench behind Aaron Rodgers. If you still question my opinion of Rodgers' readiness to lead my favorite team, see paragraph two.
Then, to add to the outrage, Ted is now offering Favre $20 million to stay in retirement. Why is he doing this? Simple, Brett Favre is amazing. There's no way he'll play second-fiddle to Rodgers, and he will be incredible regardless of what other team he would end up on.
No matter where he goes, Favre would come back to haunt Thompson. Therefore, he wants to get rid of him and remove evidence of his error.
How should this process have gone? Brett Favre calls up the Packers saying, "I want to play again." The Packers GM responds, "Sure! I'll go tell Rodgers to get back to the bench so we can have an Pro Bowl quarterback lead us to the Promised Land."
See? In three sentences, the Packers have an amazing QB again, Ted Thompson looks good, and there is no media firestorm.
Ted Thompson, you've obviously messed up. I, being the diehard Green Bay fan that I am, hope Favre goes to the Vikings and makes sure no one forgets why he's there. I hope he makes you look bad, preferably without making the Packers look bad.
Mr. Thompson, you may have one more chance to mend the error of your ways this Monday. The entire NFL will be watching you as you make the biggest choice of your career.
Most importantly, the fans will be watching, and they'll remember who's responsible for next year's QB situation. The fans don't forget, and the fans don't forgive. You remember that, Mr. Thompson. Remember that.