Brett Favre vs. Brad Childress: 10 Reasons the QB Is Hating on the Coach
Today in an article by Yahoo! Sports writer Jason Cole, a Vikings’ player was quoted as saying, “Brett thinks Childress has no clue about offense,” and that it was Childress' presence serving at the biggest deterrent to returning; not Favre's ankle injury.
Another member of the Vikings went on to say that, “Brett just doesn't trust him.” But why? Last year the Vikings won 12 games and made it to overtime in the NFC Championship game.
Childress was hired by the Vikings in 2006, and since then, has improved every season including back to back playoff appearances.
With that in mind, let's examine ten reasons why Brett Favre may be none too fond of Coach Childress.
10. Limited NFL Experience
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Although Childress has been coaching since 1978, his experience in the NFL is minimal.
The man broke into football in 1978 as the running back and wide receiver’s coach for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
He served there for six years before taking a job with the Colts. There, he worked as the Quarterbacks coach for the 1985 season.
From 1986-1989, Childress served as the wide receivers coach for the University of Utah before absconding to the University of Wisconsin-Madison to be the offensive coordinator.
9. The Gumbo Argument
When Favre first came to Minnesota he wanted to make a good first impression.
He invited Coach Childress over to his house to discuss offensive philosophy and enjoy a nice home cooked meal.
As a good ol' southern boy from Mississippi, Favre had his wife Deanna make a pot of Gumbo.
Much to Favre's dismay, Childress (who was born and raised in Chicago) refused the delicious shrimp and rice delicacy, instead suggesting a trip to Uno's for a classic Chicago style deep-dish pizza.
This never sat well with Brett who is passionate about his Southern roots, and even more passionate about his wife's gumbo.
Despite the fact that neither of these men have publicly addressed the problem, it began their poor relationship and remains a painful memory.
8. Stint with Philadelphia
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While Childress was the offensive coordinator for the Eagles, quarterback Donovan McNabb was named to five Pro Bowls.
Certainly an impressive feat, so what's the problem?
Coach Andy Reid was in charge of calling the plays...not Childress. The fact that Reid did not trust his offensive coordinator to designate the plays is certainly indicative of a lack of trust.
It also lends slight credibility to Favre's sentiment that despite a successful track record, Childress is clueless on offense.
7. Alumni History
Very few people know this (and fans of either school will deny it), but Eastern Illinois and Southern Mississippi have a bitter and historic rivalry, dating back to the early 1900's.
Ever since their 1909 tilt in which the Golden Eagles defeated the Panthers, 6-3, the two schools have held great hostility towards each other.
As minor schools overshadowed by larger state Universities, the two institutions have both developed Napoleon complex's forcing them to over compensate for their minute size.
While Favre is a graduate of Southern Mississippi, Childress is an Eastern Illinois alum and neither has been willing to back down in their trash talk.
The boasting started off as playful in spirit, but quickly deteriorated into a series of “your mama” jokes and awful puns.
The team is looking to bring in Doctor Phil as a counselor.
6. Childress Attempts to Pull Favre from Game Against Panthers
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On Dec. 20, 2009, the Vikings dropped a game to the Carolina Panthers, 26-7.
During that game, Childress and Favre could be seen fervently arguing on the sidelines. After the game, Favre explained the situation.
“Yeah, there was a heated discussion; I guess you would call it. No secret, I was getting hit a little bit. I felt the pressure on a lot of plays. We had seven points. So I think everyone in the building was like, 'They're not moving the ball, they're not getting points.' Brad wanted to go in a different direction and I wanted to stay in the game.”
Was Childress wrong in wanting to protect his quarterback from a barrage of hits? I tend to think so.
No player in their right mind wants to come out of any game, let alone a tightly contested affair. In a 7-6 game, there is no way you are pulling a star quarterback.
The Vikings may have had a playoff bid sewn up already, but this wasn't the last game of the season, it was the third to last.
They were still playing for home field advantage and a first round bye. It's almost insulting to expect a superstar like Favre would want to sit out with that much on the line.
5. Childress' Close Minded Nature
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Many players have described Childress’ unwillingness to listen to the input of his team members.
With Favre's experience paired with his sense of entitlement, a clash of the titans seemed unavoidable between the two men.
As a 19-year veteran who clearly needs to be the center of attention, one can only imagine the way Favre might react if his ideas are disregarded.
His years of experience make Favre’s input invaluable.
For a coaching staff to ignore his contributions and expertise?
Say what you will about Favre's need for attention. The man can play the game and deserves to be heard.
4. Favre Is a Crazy Person
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This one is tough to dispute.
Favre may be one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game, but that does not speak to his personality. Ever since 2003, Favre has been wavering back and forth between playing and retiring.
These shenanigans have become an irritating side show that sports anchors and fans alike simultaneously love and loathe.
This is a man who defined his career as a member of the Green Bay Packers. He is legend in Wisconsin.
Yet here he is, returning to play for their rivals, the Minnesota Vikings. Despite his success, or perhaps because of it, he has developed a selfish ego forcing others to kowtow while they await his every decision.
It's easy to see a coach being irritated by a player who thinks he is above the team; a guy who keeps teammates in limbo throughout the off-season.
Favre may publicly have words for Childress, but it's a fair bet that Childress is not fond of Favre's aggravating antics.
3. Favre Is Frustrated By the Way Childress Challenges Him
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Last season may have been the best of Favre's career. He sported a career best 107.2 QB rating and his 4202 yards are his highest since 1998.
His seven interceptions were the lowest of his career while his 68.4 percent completion percentage was the best of his career.
A year after Favre endured one of his worst career years with the Jets (22 TD to 22 INT) without complaining about Coach Mangini (who was incidentally fired after the season), he complains about the coaching on a winner?
It doesn't add up.
Farve and Childress were seen having many heated exchanges, but the end result was a level of production that no 40-year old quarterback had ever achieved.
So why is Favre complaining? This is a team that won 12 games and produced 10 Pro Bowlers.
In fact, if the rule for overtime didn't favor the receiving team so greatly, it could have been Favre and his teammates hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.
So what is that indicative of? How can a coach that supposedly knows so little about offense average 380 yards of offense with 53 total touchdowns?
Perhaps Childress knows more about offense than Favre wants to give him credit for.
In all likelihood, Childress and Favre have differing views on how an offense should be run. But that's not always a bad thing. It may be that Childress is the yin to Favre's yang.
Hell, John Lennon and Paul McCartney had a very strained relationship, but together they produced some of the greatest music of all time.
I can understand the way Favre feels. After all these years he wants to return on his terms. But in Minnesota, Childress dictates the terms.
What should both parties learn from this? They may disagree, but if they can find a way to suck it up and work together, perhaps they will be making sweet music together come February.
2. Brett Favre Is Crazy
Yes I've said it twice, but it deserves to be said at least twice.
His attention seeking behavior and complaining in spite of winning is ludicrous.
1. Childress Is a Liar
Yesterday when asked about the whereabouts of Ryan Longwell, Steve Hutchinson and Jared Allen, the coach tried lying to the press who already seemed to know the truth.
Childress apparently told special teams coach Brian Murphy as well as offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell that the three players were inside at practice rather than aboard a private jet en route to Favre's home in Mississippi.
The motivation on Childress' part was clear; he didn't want to look desperate. He didn't want it to appear as if he was groveling at the feet of Favre.
As Yahoo! Sport's Jason Cole reported, the players were none too pleased with their coaches lack of honesty.
“Chilly can’t even tell the truth about that. I mean, how ridiculous is that? What’s the big deal that he has to lie? Worse, he has to tell other guys to lie for him?”
That type of behavior will lose the trust of your players, and moreover, it will lose their respect. Despite Favre's success with Brad Childress, that type of behavior makes it easy to see how a player could harbor feelings of ill will.