Janesville68.6°

Yes or no? Viking fans have that drama now

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Michael Hunt
January 28, 2010
— Apparently, the only thing iffier than a football in Brett Favre’s hands during the playoffs is a retirement decision in his head.

The good thing is his American Hamlet act is now playing at theaters throughout Minnesota, and none east of the Mississippi.


You wanted him so badly over there? Now you have to deal with everything that comes with the entire Brett Favre package, postseason malfunctions and career vacillations included.


That’s part of it, my horned friends to the northwest. Along with 4,000 yards passing and the occasional daytrip to Lourdes, there are maintenance costs associated with managing a whole new winter season. Along with Timberwolves basketball and Twins hot stove, you’ve now got the Favre Watch, and let me tell you, it isn’t cheap.


We’re so glad it’s your problem now. Two whole football off-seasons without the related No. 4 clutter can be very liberating. Eventually, you’ll see.


Over here, we only have two comparatively trivial pieces of business to attend to, if and when your television salesman cashes his last purple-inked check.


Actually, make that one.


When will the prodigal son be allowed to come home to have his number put up on the Lambeau facade? A lot of people around here are still plenty sore at him for sticking it to the Packers with his boorish Vikings fixation, but people around here also tend to forgive and forget at a rate higher than the national average.


So let’s make it one year for each game he beat the Packers this season, which would allow the Green Bay retirement ceremony to coincide with the expiration of the Mayan calendar. Sounds like good timing.


And if Favre happens to honor his contract and play a second season with the Vikings, apply the same terms. If the Packers sweep next year, the door immediately swings open.


I’m guessing he’s coming back, for all the usual reasons. Beyond the truth of Darren Sharper’s testimony that Favre has 13 million reasons to return, he was undeniably great this season. There, I admitted it. If he can still play like he did at age 40, why not? He doesn’t need another Super Bowl ring to verify his place in history. He’s pretty much set as one of the top five or six quarterbacks ever.


Even Favre’s history of playoff failure doesn’t tarnish that legacy. But if we’re going to bring that up, we might as well get around to the second piece of business we weren’t going to raise, mostly because the answer has become so self-evident.


Were the Packers worse for not having Favre these last two seasons? Do you even have to ask anymore?


The simple answer is the Packers are much better off for allowing Aaron Rodgers to begin his career. They are so far ahead of the game with a 25-year-old quarterback with two years of experience that it’s not even debatable. If you don’t believe the NFL has completely become a young-ish quarterback’s league, look at the Super Bowl entrants.


Besides, it’s now clear the Packers wouldn’t have made the ’08 playoffs with an injured Favre or got to the Super Bowl this year with a Hall of Famer who forever seems destined to misfire when it matters most. Of course, they were better off without him.


But Favre got another shot, and good for him. He proved a lot of things, just not the Main Thing. And, sure, in the interim he could be a knucklehead like your teenage son, but eventually he’s going to be our knucklehead again.


We’ll leave a green light on for you because, truth be told, you never looked good in purple.



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