How long will his penance be?
Wisconsinites are a proud lot.
Often overlooked by the rest of the country as little more than a northern flyover state in the rust belt, when we have something good, we claim it as ours. Lacking the flash of New York, the glamor of California, or the boastful pride of Texas, we circle the wagons around our borders when we feel we have been done wrong by an outsider.
Brett Favre did us wrong.
Or so the story goes. Of course, there are two sides to every story, but few in our state cared what the Ol' Gunslinger's history was once he put on that hideous purple shirt. Oh, it was palatable when Favre spent one season as a New York Jet; after all, the Jets and Packers could only meet in the Super Bowl, and even that was the longest of shots.
But show a Packers fan purple, and all that is seen is red.
Of course it is inconsequential that what drove Favre to Minnesota in the first place was a disagreement with one guy that evolved into a feud. The guy, Ted Thompson, had a different vision than Favre did as to how to make the Packers a champion once again. Favre, knowing that his window as an elite NFL quarterback was closing, wanted the Packers new general manager to be active in the off-season to surround the aging superstar with established talent.
Thompson felt the best way to build a championship-caliber team was to do so through the draft. Obviously it is hard to quibble with the results of that vision, even if it did take longer than impatient Packers fans would have liked at the time.
When one really puts themselves in Favre's shoes, however, it is hard to not understand where he was coming from. After all, the one Super Bowl championship he was a part of was built on the backs of players not drafted by Green Bay.
Favre himself was the product of the single most lopsided trade in NFL history. Reggie White was arguably the most highly sought after free agent ever and landed in Titletown, too. Super Bowl MVP Desmond Howard was also a free agent, as was Andre Rison. And while both were cast-offs, they both made significant contributions during their time with the Packers. Keith Jackson came to Green Bay via trade. Santana Dotson, Sean Jones, and Eugene Robinson all brought veteran leadership to the Super Bowl XXXI Champions as well.
This was Favre's vision. Draft well, but add pieces as needed.
It was a disagreement. An honest one that both men felt in their hearts was best for the team, and in Favre's case, best for him as well. But lest fans throw stones at the notion that Favre shouldn't have had an opinion, keep in mind that the last Hall of Fame player drafted by the Packers was James Lofton in 1978.
But Favre was not the man in charge. Thompson was hired to run the Packers, and that's all that mattered. It was his that was the final word, not Favre's or anyone else's.
From there, we all know what happened.
As in football, as in life, there are two sides to every story. And while the popular narrative on the kid from Kiln is that of pariah in the Badger State, both sides have culpability in the case of Favre vs. Green Bay Packers, Inc.
In a nutshell, the Packers were sick of Favre taking his own sweet time deciding whether or not he was going to play each season. Green Bay had this kid named Rodgers they knew was going to be great and wanted to look toward the future.
Favre, hurt by Thompson's organizational decision, still wanted to play.
What happened over the next three years was ugly and unnecessary, but it is like the bell you desperately want to un-ring. It is too late. What is past is past. The only thing anyone can do now is try to repair the damage.
Mike Holmgren was inducted into the Packers Hall of Fame late last month. Favre was invited, but did not attend, preferring to not become the story when the stage belonged to his mentor and former coach.
"I hear from (Favre) maybe once a year," Holmgren told the Green Bay Press-Gazette. "But he did text me and wish me well tonight, (said) some very nice things. We had a nice exchange."
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Wow. TT wins the Super Bowl, team goes 15-1 the next year and Jeff Jordan wants to give him a B for a grade. Just another Favre apologist trying to knock Teddy down a peg.
Jeff Jordan | Aug. 9, 2012 at 8:09 a.m. (report)
There are two sides to the story and the current story would have been far different if the Packers didn't have the success they are having today. Has Thompson succeeded? Yes, if you look at win v losses and our Super Bowl win. But unlike his predecessor, is he going to be albe to surround Rodgers with the caliber of player necessary to maintain the high level of performance needed to consistently win in the NFL. So far you have to give him grade of B. Until we get a decent running game and a defense that dosen't force Rodgers to set passing records every game in order to pull out a close win, I'd say we are dancing on the edges of razor blades. Can you blame Favre? Mike Sherman failed to surround him with the kind of players that would help the team get back to the Super Bowl. While the teams were exciting, they weren't among the elite. Favre wanted to win and obviously he wanted to win more than Mike Sherman's ability to judge or obtain talent would allow him to win. Trust me,with that scenario, many of today's top QB's would have asked to be traded long before they were told they weren't needed anymore.
Sorry....the guy is a tool. A sometimes entertaining and gifted quarterback (I used to LOVE to watch him play)...but as a person...he is a self-absorbed, redneck, immoral hillbilly. I hope they never retire his number.
Yes he was a great regular season quarterback. Post Season not so much, made the stupidest plays at the worst times. He needs to get over himself. Hes lucky he had Mike Holmgren as a coach and some very good quarterback coaches. Time has shown that Ted Thompson made the right decision. Maybe if he would come back to Wisconsin once in a while and do some charity events and that sort thing. People would begin to love him like we all once did. Before the real Favre revealed himself and left us all with a sour taste in our mouths.
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