Reid Fischer's World of Rants

Looking at the sports world through orange colored glasses

Posts Tagged ‘Brett Favre’

Favre + Vikings = Super Bowl

Posted by mizzou1028 on August 19, 2009

I have to admit I thought the whole Brett Favre saga was done.  I thought he was really retired this time.  I know I know, he’s done this before, and undoubtedly he now holds the NFL record for false retirements.  Wasn’t it three seasons ago he had what essentially was a tearful goodbye right after the season finale, a Sunday night game at Chicago?  Nevertheless, Favre will apparently play for the Vikings this season, which has to be a tough pill to swallow for Packers fans (Imagine John Elway in a Raiders uniform or Dan Marino in a Patriots jersey for comparison).  Green Bay thought they had dodged that bullet when they traded Favre to the Jets last season.  Heck, they even put a clause in the thing that required any team that acquired Favre from the Jets to surrender three first round picks to Green Bay.  Unfortunately for the Packers, they said nothing about the Jets releasing Favre (which the Jets did after they drafted Mark Sanchez).  This now means the Packers will have to contend with Favre head to head twice this year  Favre vs. Rodgers, one of them on a Monday night.  I can’t wait. 

Let’s make no mistake about this: Favre can still play a little.  He led the Jets to a 7-3 start last season before they collapsed.  While Favre was not on top of game in December last year, he was also not the only one responsible.  The Jets defense fell apart and so did their running game.  Favre can still throw the ball with zip for sure.  The biggest thing working against Favre is the same thing that has been his downfall at times his entire career: his tendency to throw interceptions.  The flipside of that is Favre has been able to make throws into traffic that few quarterbacks can make.  

Brett Favre, even at his age, is an upgrade over Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels, and that automatically makes the Vikings a better football team.  Minnesota was already a Super Bowl contender with their running game and defense, and this move may just put them over the top in the NFC.  In fact, I’m going to go ahead and pick the Vikings to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.  My season picks are still coming in the next few weeks, but I think considering the Vikings were already good, considering the fact that they were set at essentially every position except for QB, I think even a halfway decent Favre will be enough to put the Vikings over the top.  They have the league’s top running game with a physical offensive line and Adrian Peterson, and they also have arguably the league’s top defensive line and an excellent secondary.  Factor in their friendly schedule, and I think this is shaping up to be a big year for the Vikings.  In fact, they could have had this last year if they had been able to swing the deal for Favre then.  

I do feel bad for Jackson and Rosenfels.  They were both competing for what they thought was a starting QB job.  Now both are relegated to backup duty.  I think there is a decent chance one of them will be traded, especially if some team sees their signal caller go down in preseason and get desperate.  I do think Favre should have been up front and honest about his desire to return instead of waffling.  It is obvious that both he and the team knew exactly what was going on being that Favre was already practicing yesterday.  I know this makes me and others tired of Favre’s act.  Despite all that, I see a good year for him and a big year for the Vikings.  Minnesota is going to the Super Bowl.

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Football Thoughts

Posted by mizzou1028 on August 6, 2008

– I think the Broncos are darn lucky that Brandon Marshall wasn’t suspended for more games than the three handed down by Roger Goodell.  Considering the suspension will likely be reduced to two games after Marshall undergoes counseling, the Broncos should be thankful they aren’t losing their star receiver for half the season.  Granted, Marshall will miss two division games (at Oakland and home versus San Diego) but at least he isn’t out for a longer period of time.  Marshall is still poised to have a big year on the heals of a 102 catch season, and hopefully he has learned his lesson about toeing the line off the field.

– The Broncos have a couple of injury concerns already in camp that haven’t been discussed much.  One is center Tom Nalen, who sat out the final 11 games last season after tearing his right biceps, and is currently recovering from off-season surgery on his left knee.  Nalen will likely miss the entire preseason (let’s be honest – that’s not really important) but it doesn’t seem for sure as though he’ll be ready for the opener at Oakland.  The fact that Nalen is missing time now also begs the question as to whether he’ll be able to finish the season healthy.  Nalen is the leader of the offensive line and his absence was definitely noticeable last year.

– The other injury is to rookie running back Ryan Torian.  Torian was carried off the field this morning after being hit by Jamie Winborn and Nate Webster.  Torian suffered a broken elbow and will miss 6-8 weeks, meaning at the earliest it will be late September before he can return to action.  Even though he was selected in the fifth round, the Broncos had high hopes that Torian could become the feature back in the offense because his running style is a perfect fit for the team’s running scheme.  Torian will now miss the rest of camp and the preseason, which is more important for a rookie because he needs that period to adjust to the rigors of the NFL, plus it might actually impact Torian’s chances of making the team. 

– As far as Brett Favre is concerned, I think the Days of Our Lives theme music is appropriate here.  This has become such a circus it’s ridiculous.  At this point, if the Packers are that convinced that Aaron Rodgers is their guy and they don’t want Favre around, they should just release him.  Of course, they’re not going to do that because Favre would sign with division rival Minnesota immediately if not sooner.  It’s funny, I’m tired of hearing about Favre, but on the other hand I’m dying to see what happens next in this saga.  It has gotten to the point where it’s so crazy that it is rapidly becoming entertaining and tiresome at the same time.  Regardless of how it turns out, any Favre game against the Packers will be must see, wherever Favre ends up playing.  That is, if he ends up playing.

– It will be interesting to see how this affects Favre’s legacy.  He’s a sure fire Hall of Fame lock for sure, but will he be remembered for this drama at the end of his career?  I am intrigued to see how Favre will be recalled in ten, or even five years.

– It is also interesting how because of the Favre saga, we haven’t heard much about the other 31 teams in the league besides the Packers.  Maybe this is one of the reasons why it doesn’t quite seem like it should be time for football yet.  Of course, it is only preseason right now, so really we’re still a month away from any football that matters, but I don’t generally remember football sneaking up on me as much in previous years as it has this year.  Maybe it won’t seem that way once the Broncos have their first preseason game (or as I prefer to think of it, glorified controlled scrimmage) on Saturday night.

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Favre or no Favre?

Posted by mizzou1028 on July 9, 2008

I don’t know any more about the nuances of the rumors surrounding a possible return to the NFL by Brett Favre than the man in the moon.  I don’t know if Favre is really feeling the itch to return just months after an emotional retirement press conference, or if this is just being fueled by the media to fill up time when they have nothing else to talk about.  I don’t know what Packers management is thinking on this.  What I do know is that if Favre does want to return, and the Packers say no thanks, than they had better be prepared for it to backfire.  There is not a good track record in NFL history for replacing legend quarterbacks.  In fact, it is about as close to guarantee for failure as there is in the sport.  Nothing against Aaron Rodgers, who played well against Dallas last year when Favre was injured, but if the Packers really think they’re better off with Rodgers than they would be if Favre came back, they are probably in trouble.

The list of quarterbacks that have tried to follow legends in NFL history is a rather dubious one.  By the nature of it, trying to follow a Hall of Famer is not an easy task anyway, particularly when a young signal caller is trying to replace a guy who’s an icon, like Favre is in Green Bay.  Terry Bradshaw won four Super Bowls in the 1970s with Pittsburgh, but it wasn’t until Ben Roethlisberger in 2005 that the Steelers really had any stability at the position after Bradshaw’s retirement.  Bradshaw was followed by among others Cliff Stoudt, Mark Malone, David Woodley, Scott Campbell, Bubby Brister, Neil O’Donnell and Kordell Stewart.  The Steelers had a number of good teams between Bradshaw’s retirement and their Super Bowl win in ’05, even making the Super Bowl in 1995 with O’Donnell, but all of those guys had to play in Bradshaw’s shadow.  How about guys who have followed John Elway in Denver?  Try Brian Griese, Gus Frerotte and Jake Plummer.  The Broncos went 6-10 in 1999 the first year without Elway, and this was with a team that won back to back Super Bowls in ’97 and ’98.  There is no doubt that the Broncos would not have been near that bad in ’99 if Elway had returned to play for another season.  As a side note, you could even make the argument (however thin) that Terrell Davis never would have torn his ACL had Elway returned.  See, that happened on a play where Griese threw an interception into double coverage that Elway never would have thrown, and Davis got injured trying to make the tackle.  How about the Miami Dolphins post Marino?  Again you’ll find Brian Griese’s name among the replacements, and actually Frerotte’s as well, in addition to Jay Fiedler, Damon Huard, Joey Harrington, Cleo Lemon, A.J. Feeley and Sage Rosenfels.  Miami STILL has no stability at QB since Dan Marino retired in 1999.  There is no doubt that Miami fans would have gladly taken one more season with Marino at the helm in 2000, if nothing else for one more shot at a run before the inevitable rebuilding process.

The point of all this is not to say that Aaron Rodgers will fail.  Truth is, we have no idea how he will do.  It is reasonable to say however that being quarterback of the Packers for a full season is quite different than coming in as an injury replacement for one game.  The point is that if the Packers are that fast to say goodbye to Favre, and are ready to take their chances with Rodgers, they should be prepared for the team to struggle.  In fact, history shows they are likely to miss the playoffs with Rodgers at quarterback based on the track record of teams the season following the retirement of a legend quarterback, particularly when that quarterback is the face of the franchise.  If Favre wants to come back and play one more season, the Packers should welcome him back with open arms, period.  Favre had one of his best seasons last year, and there is no reason to think he can’t still play at a high level if he wants to.  Can you imagine Mike Shanahan in 1999 if Elway said he wanted to return a week before camp, even in the wake of his retirement press conference?  Can you imagine Shanahan telling Elway, “no I think we’re set with Brian Griese, thanks”?  Me neither.

Whether Favre actually plays this season or not will be interesting to see.  It will more interesting if he wants to play and the Packers wave him off.  If that were the case, the Packers would have to either release him, allowing him to play for another team, or they would have to trade him, neither of which would be an easy pill to swallow for Green Bay fans.  If the thought of Favre in another uniform makes a Packer fan want to throw up, than imagine Favre playing for arguably the one contending team that is missing a quarterback.  The one team in the league that is set at pretty much every position except for quarterback.  A team that made a big splash in the offseason bringing in Jared Allen (arguably the league’s top defensive lineman) and a good receiver in Bernard Berrian.  A team with one of the NFL’s top rushing attacks and a team that in recent years has been amazingly stingy defensively against the run.  A team who’s current top QB is very young, inexperienced, and could use a year under Favre.  A team that as currently constructed has been picked to win the Super Bowl by Sports Illustrated’s Paul Zimmerman.  That would be the Minnesota Vikings, prime division rival of the Packers.  If the Packers are that sure they would rather take their chances with Aaron Rodgers, they should envision this scenario: Week one, Monday night at Lambeau Field, Packers-Vikings, Favre coming out of the tunnel in Vikings purple.  It should be enough to make any Packer fan want to throw up.  That is, until they envision Favre holding the Lombardi Trophy at the end of the season in a Vikings hat, after the Packers have suffered through a 6-10 season under Rodgers.

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