Blog: Parade Of Losers

Geez, you go camping for a couple of days with your kids and you miss so much . . .

So the Packers have traded Brett Favre to the Jets, finally closing the tent on their two-month circus. Unfortunately, all this circus has left behind is a parade of losers. Let’s examine each loser in detail:

Brett Favre.Certainly the biggest loser in all of this. Favre clearly didn’t want to play for the Jets. And for good reason. Personally, it will be a culture shock. I’m not saying that Favre’s some hick who can’t adjust to the big city, but he is essentially a small-town guy who was tailor made for the smallest market in professional sports. His bio on officialbrettfavre.com lists his interests as “hunting, TV nature programs, crossword puzzles, fishing, and tending to his home.” Not exactly hobbies that put anyone in a New York State of Mind. Favre is an icon in Wisconsin; in New York, even if he is successful, he will be just another face in the crowd, overshadowed by A-Rod, Donald Trump, Madonna, and Regis and Kelly. And that’s if he’s lucky. God forbid he gets photographed having lunch with any female other than his wife or one of his daughters ends up discussing her sexual preferences on Howard Stern’s radio show.

Personally, it will clearly be a tough fit, but what about professionally? Well, Favre goes from playing for a 13-3 team that returns basically all of its roster to a 4-12 team that, unfortunately for him, also returns much of its roster. The Jets’ additions of star guard Alan Faneca and star linebacker Calvin Pace will help, but it will take Favre’s best season ever to lift this roster, with the likes of Laveraneus Coles, Jerricho Cotchery, and Thomas Jones (and Packer reject Bubba Franks) as his weapons, to a Wild Card spot. Not to mention that Favre goes from the cushy confines of the NFC North to the brutal AFC East, which features the New England Patriots and the improving Buffalo Bills.

Favre has stated all through this painful process that he wanted to play only if he could play for a contender. The Packers are a contender. The Buccaneers, in a weak NFC South, are a contender. The Vikings would have been a contender with Favre. The Jets are not. You would have to have a very hard heart not to feel badly for how this all turned out for Favre. He’s not a traitor, but this bad deal has made him a loser.

Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy.The Packers organization has taken several hits here. The immediate one is the hit on their image. Even the most ardent Favre hater has to be shocked at how Favre was run out of town. Not only did the Packers disrespect Favre by not agreeing to his reasonable wish to start or be released, but they threw in an amazingly stiff penalty — three first-rounddraft picks — that ensured the Jets wouldn’t turn around and deal Favre to his preferred team, the Minnesota Vikings. Talk about adding insult to injury. It’s like parents that refuse to take their kids to Disney World, take them to Gator Land instead, and insist on staying at the Motel 6. (And don’t feed me any line about how the Packers didn’t want to face Favre twice a year. If he so’s good that they don’t want to play against him, then he’s good enough to play for them.)

But more importantly, Thompson and McCarthy have gone to great lengths to ensure that the Packers will be less competitive in 2008 than they were in 2007. That’s why, despite getting just what they wanted out of this, they’re losers too.

Aaron Rodgers. Yes, Rodgers got what he wanted too, but the old adage of being careful what you wish for has never been truer. (Not to mention the old adage of not wanting to be the guy that replaces a legend, but rather the guy that replaces the guy who replaced the legend.) If Rodgers doesn’t play well — very well — he should expect very nasty treatment from the fans at Lambeau Field who will remember all too well the Lambeau-Leaping heroics of number 4. Rodgers may end up feeling that his three-year in-training period wasn’t nearly long enough. 

Eric Mangini.Hopes are now ridiculously high in New York, and not just for the Giants, Mets, and Yankees. If the new Favre-led J-E-T-S Jets, Jets, Jets don’t deliver for head coach Mangini, he can be expected to be out of a job by New Year’s.

Chad Pennington. Despite claims from the Dolphins that they are happy with quarterbacks Josh McCown, John Beck, and Chad Henne (yeah, right, like I’m happy with the boring houseguests on this year’s Big Brother), Pennington will likely wind up in Miami. Hey, at least the weather’s great.

The Minnesota Vikings. They’re stuck with Tavaris Jackson. Hey, at least Kelly Holcomb retired.

The Chicago Bears. They’re stuck with Kyle Orton and Rex Grossman. Hey, at least the Cubs and White Sox are having good years.

The NFL. Favre’s presence guaranteed national (and beyond) interest in the NFL’s most storied franchise. Rodgers can’t and won’t.

Like most people, I’m happy that Favre and the Packers have finally settled their dispute. Now maybe the country can focus on more relevant topics, like the upcoming presidential election or the Jonas Brothers. But I can’t help wishing that this admittedly fascinating story hadn’t had such a sad ending for everyone involved. Images of that 13-3 season of 2007, of Favre leading Mike McCarthy’s team to commanding win after commanding win, now seem as distant as Max McGhee catching touchdown passes in Super Bowl I.

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5 Responses

  1. Don’t forget what losers the Packer fans and owners are. .

  2. Jeff wrote: “Even the most ardent Favre hater has to be shocked at how Favre was run out of town.”

    I admit that I wasn’t the biggest of Favre fans, but only a little shocked that he was not brought back…hey, the guy retired! How many businesses do you know where a guy can retire, someone is promoted to his job, and another person hired, that would take the retired employee back 5 months later after he admitted that he was less than 100% committed and had done virtually no work or preparation in the interim?

  3. I was a Favre fan. A few years ago he told Walker who wanted a new contract, when you sign a contract you live by it. Favre had 3 years left on his contract. He signed his retirement papers. He did not keep his word on any one of these. Yes he had a good year last year. Do you think that the reason was because of his receivers and running game. By which they are still there for Rodgers! Rodgers can have a vary good year, make a few mistake and then people like you want to run him out of the state. If everyone was pushed out for a mistake they make, where would you and I be now? Let Favre enjoy New York but we all know he still bleeds Green & Gold. Go Rodgers and company!

  4. <>

    The number of months vary but…

    Michael Jordan
    Mario Lemeiux
    Brett Favre
    Muhammad Ali
    Martina Navratilova
    Roger Clemens
    Lance Armstrong
    George Foreman
    Sugar Ray Leonard

    I could keep going but I think I’ve made my point. Forcing out Brett will prove to be a mistake

  5. The deal is over and done with. Favre is now a Jet. Did he want to play a Packer this year we will not the turth (till the books come rolling off the presses in a few years from now). What matters is that the Pack will move on like the time Starr retired. IF you are a TRUE Packer fan, you can’t yell at Rodgers for he did nothing wrong. He just was moved up the latter by his bosses. You must get off the cry wagon and back on the fan wagon. It may take a year or two, and maybe not but we will be back on top. For everyone wants to be a Packer Backer, but the TRUE fans take good with bad. Remember they call the Super Bowl Trophy ” The Lombardi Trophy ” for a reason. Be pround, Stay pround!

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