Let’s be fair from the get go: Brett Favre proved more than adequate on the field whether standing in Green Bay or performing on the road. He won a Super Bowl. He led his team to two Super Bowl appearances. His name appears in record books for a variety of records at his position. He played his heart out and is certainly one of the Iron Men quarterbacks.
And let’s be fair in saying that during the late ’70s the Green Bay Packers were an abject failure as an NFL team. Favre made the team better when he played…more often than not.
With these things on the table, and with Favre’s subsequent and official retirement announcement on Thursday, can those of us who follow the sport take a collective sigh and say, “Whew!” Here’s a guy who finally had enough and retired before he embarrassed himself.
Favre announced his retirement with a few tears and a bit of emotion on March 6. The news circled the globe. In fact, the BBC even reported on his retirement news conference.
In Wisconsin, the news (although expected for the past three years) threw football fans into disarray. Some feel he should return because he IS the Green Bay Packers. They want to believe that Favre has another year or two of fight in him to lead the Pack to yet another Super Bowl. Favre, however, does not feel that way.
I know I can still play, but it’s like I told my wife, I’m just tired mentally. I’m just tired,” Favre told ESPN’s Chris Mortensen in a voice mail message.”
With admiration, (even from someone who smiled each time he threw a pick or got sacked by a Vikings defender) let’s give the guy his due and say goodbye and good luck. Let’s look forward to watching Green Bay struggle to find a replacement quarterback who will never, ever, ever be a Favre…a legend. Who could possibly fill those shoes? In this era of NFL “win now, win consistently” mind set, what QB will get the opportunities Favre had to suck mightily and wake up with job security day in and day out?
The person I feel the worst for is Favre’s biggest fan, Terry Bradshaw. I’m sure Terry’s pillow was soaked with tears when his dearly beloved called to say he was joining the ranks of “former” QBs. We all know Bradshaw was in love with Brett. Perhaps now, the two of them can spend some real quality time together.
Yes, Favre carved a place for himself in the football world. Now it’s time to let him go. Do so with dignity, football fans. After all, he gave 17 years of his life to the NFL. He owes no one anything.