Brett Favre came out of retirement twice at the end of his career to play for the New York Jets and the Minnesota Vikings, so when he noted in a recent interview that he felt he could still play in the NFL, more than a few eyebrows raised up.
During a conversation with Sports Illustrated for the "Where Are They Now?" issue, the former Green Bay Packers star noted the following (via the Journal Sentinel): "I think I could play. As far as throwing, of course. I could make all the throws I made before. ... We're not trying to start some he’s-coming-out-of-retirement deal. ... But I could play."
Sports Illustrated provided a photo of the magazine's cover, which features Favre wearing his Packers jersey:
Favre, 45, probably still has an excellent arm. Whether he could make those plays with a pass rush in his face and a cornerback who runs a 4.3 40-yard dash closing in on his throw is another matter entirely.
Given the quarterback's last season in Minnesota, Pete Prisco of CBS Sports was blunt in his assessment of Favre's ability to perform against NFL defenses:
While Favre won't be coming out of retirement for a third time, his latest comments were a reminder of his last years in the NFL, when the speculation about whether he would continue to play or retire became a constant—and for many folks, exhausting—storyline.
At times, that "Will he or won't he?" question overshadowed his Hall of Fame-worthy career. He was an 11-time Pro Bowler, a three-time first-team All-Pro selection and a three-time NFL MVP. He still has the most completions (6,300), pass attempts (10,169), passing yards (71,838) and interceptions (336) in NFL history, along with being second in passing touchdowns (508).
His gunslinger mentality, big arm, toughness and flair for the dramatic made him one of the league's most exciting players. And if there was a former quarterback who might be able to step in for a few snaps and thrill an NFL crowd at 45, well, Favre would probably be that guy.