Archive for the ‘football’ Category

Divorce talks back on – Favre/McCarthy not on same page

August 5, 2008

Jay Glazer from Fox Sports reports here that Brett Favre met with Mike McCarthy last night for so long that McCarthy had to cancel his 8:15pm press conference. (I was tuned in to the press conference starting at about 8pm last night and was able to hear the reporters in the room. What initially sounded like regular conversation, I soon realized, was reporters practicing the asking of their particular questions – out loud. Brother Steve, you never told me you people do this. You journalists are odd, talking to yourselves like that). Anyway, Favre met with McCarthy and it apparently was amicable, but they still can’t see eye to eye.

Favre apparently noted on several occasions that he’s worried about messing up team chemistry (something that on its face may seem altruistic, but it could also be further evidence that he may be trying to wiggle out of this to play for the Vikes. “You know, I’ve been feeling bad about all this and just don’t want to disrupt the team any further. I guess I should just play for the Vikings then”). Among other things, Favre apparently now is in line with Rodgers being the starting QB.

I just can’t help but think something else is going on. It seemed McCarthy’s tactic last night may have still been to steer Favre away and Favre’s tactic may have still been to figure out a way to play for the Vikings. He apparently reiterated his desire to play within the division. When Favre first said this to Greta a few weeks ago, he even added “for obvious reasons”. What are those “obvious reasons”? To stick it to TT, the team, and all of Packer Nation? I just don’t get why he’d insist on playing within the division when it seems like such a jackass stance for someone who has been the face of the Packers for nearly 15 years (he wasn’t the face his first two years, Holmgren was). I guess what I struggle with most is that in Favre’s mind, there appear to be just 2 options: 1) starting for the Packers or 2) playing for the Vikings. It just doesn’t make sense – if he really loves this team and organization etc, you’d think he would rule out playing for Minnesota (unless again, he’s so ticked off about something we don’t know about, which I continue to believe is what happened).

Favre leaning toward rejecting offer?

August 3, 2008

Fox 6 sports in Milwaukee reported that ESPN is reporting that Favre is leaning toward rejecting the offer on the table from the Packers primarily because it doesn’t allow him to play. I heard this very early this morning because my son got up super early – not a welcome fact considering that I partook in significant imbification last night, if you will.

Would the Packers bribe count against the cap?

August 2, 2008

Read here from nfl.com re the possibility that any sort of marketing deal/bribe may end up costing the Pack cap room. Sounds like it needs further processing by the league to determine if this would indeed be the case. I can pretty safely say that if we end up paying Favre $20-25 million to not play and some or all of that money counts against the cap, I will not be happy. If it comes to that we should get on the phone asap with the Vikings so we can get rid of this contract – and maybe pick up Antione Winfield or a 3rd round pick or something to make this all hurt less.

Context for Favre “bribe” debate

August 1, 2008

Credit to verno329 and Donald’s Designated Driver for continuing to take me to task on the question of whether or not Mark Murphy’s gesture was truly a bribe. Several strong arguments – read their comments on previous posts. Their contention is that it’s not a bribe mostly because the offer apparently is one that had first been made back in March by Mark Murphy as a way to keep Favre connected to the team (and also hopefully keep him retired). Which back then, as they point out, was mostly a good faith gesture by the team. It seems at least some of the info verno and DDD used to bolster their argument came from this morning’s Tom Silverstein article at jsonline (correct me if I’m wrong guys). Read this article as it does shed light on the whole situation and to some extent makes Mark Murphy look less shady and quite possibly, not shady at all. Another argument for you guys here is that Favre actually acknowledged Murphy’s effort for trying to work this out. If this were a pure bribe, my guess is Favre would be pissed they tried to bribe him when he’s made it very clear he just wants to play (though again, perhaps Favre is moved by money more than many of us suspect).

But I still think there is an important question here of timing. Murphy’s apparent explanation for the timing is that because the talks had reached an impasse, he thought he’d go back to the original idea of offering this again to Favre in hopes of keeping him connected to the organization – even if he does decide to play more. Again, not a bad explanation, and if nothing had happened between Favre and the Packers in the last few months and Murphy were to have simply re-offered this, I wouldn’t probably call it a bribe. But Murphy and others cannot ignore the events of the last few months that have been at the core of this whole controversy. The fact is, Favre wanted to return and the Packers have been doing everything they can to not let this happen. Given that background, this offer by Murphy now cannot be considered a 100%, magnanimous, goodwill gesture. Time and circumstances have changed this situation significantly. It would be impossible to deny that at least part of (and I would argue most of) Murphy’s intention in doing this now was to keep Favre retired. That’s why I don’t think calling it a bribe of sorts is unreasonable. In fact, I could see this offer having two different labels over time. In March, it was a somewhat genuine/I’ll even say goodwill offer to keep Favre connected to the team (though again, Silverstein notes it was also done at that time with the hope of keeping Favre retired). The Thursday offer, while it may still have had some of those more innocent/goodwill qualities associated with it, due to the timing and all that’s happened between Favre and the front office, I think smells stronger of a bribe.

STEVE ADDS: Tom Silverstein writes that “there were only occasional talks about it between March and June before Favre started making noise about wanting to return to football.”  But according to his own newspaper, Favre was making noise about wanting to return to football in March.

Favre – latest update…more bizarre stuff

August 1, 2008

Watch here on ESPN (that is, if you can get past the horrible zoom-in, zoom-out nature of the video). Anyway, more odd stuff. Now Favre is apparently considering accepting the bribe. (I’m still calling it a bribe until more info leads me to think otherwise. Here’s a definition of bribe: something, such as money or a favor, offered or given to a person in a position of trust to influence that person’s views or conduct  – that’s exactly what this offer is about). As if Favre strongly considering taking the bribe isn’t strange enough, Favre then goes on to say that if the Packers won’t let him play for the Packers, then they should at least let him play in the division against them. What? Why would he say this right after indicating he may accept the bribe? Because he worked something out in March with the Vikings?

What a really really odd situation this is. Despite our insistence that this is a bribe (again, because with the info we have in front of us presently, it is a bribe), I still want to give a bit of latitude to the Packers front office for now because I do wonder what’s really going on behind the scenes. One worry I have is if the Packers have known of Favre’s plan to try to play for the Vikings all along and they are trying their best to keep a lid on it to preserve Favre’s legacy – to essentially save him from himself. Perhaps they know how damaging Favre-to-the-Vikings would be for his legacy so they’re trying to prevent it (and of course, they don’t want to face him in the division). But for whatever reason, Favre seems to be oblivious to this.

Umm, and what happened to the Jets trade rumors that had heated up last night?

Favre to Jets now?

July 31, 2008

Read this post from profootballtalk.com. They cite this article in the Green Bay Press Gazette, but they share with us what the original title was for the article: “All But Over: Favre to Go to Jets (It’s Over: Favre traded to Jets)”. Interesting. I think the question would be, would Favre really report to the Jets – would he accept this trade? Especially if there’s any truth to the thought that he’s been angling to be a Viking all along? Though the Jets are better than their record last year, they don’t seem to fit Favre’s requirement of going to a contender.

This would be an interesting conclusion to all of this. I wonder what we’d get for Favre? Pennington and a fifth round pick? I wouldn’t mind something like that because I may be the only person left besides Pennington and his parents who thinks Pennington isn’t done yet. But my guess is TT will just go for as high a draft pick as he can – maybe a 3rd or a 4th rounder.

Did the Vikings coax Favre out of retirement?

July 31, 2008

Read this excerpt from an AP article by Brett Martel. Focus on the bold part. What does this mean?????

It is widely believed Favre would be willing to play for the Vikings. In filing tampering charges with the NFL against the Vikings two weeks ago, Packers officials expressed a belief that Vikings coaches had inappropriate contact with Favre—and interest from the Vikings was the main reason behind Favre’s last-minute desire to return.

Did the Vikings convince him to return and is that why TT and company are so upset? Have they known all along that Favre didn’t want to come back to the Packers at all, but instead go to Hamm’s country and golf with his pal Longwell? Did this all go down during that strange time (late March) when Favre said he wanted to come back and then suddenly changed his mind? That time Al Jones himself was wondering about? I know a few of you and Brother Steve have wondered re Vikings conspiracy possibilities (I’ve been in denial re this possibility due to not being able to deal with it being true), but the more we learn, the more worried I am that this may prove to be true.

How do Grant/Herman feel re apparent Favre offer?

July 31, 2008

First of all, want to thank reader Dave in Tuscon for pointing out that many of us are running with the anonymous source report that Favre was indeed offered $20 million or so to stay away. Many typically credible outlets like ESPN, NFL.com are running with this as well, but this does not appear to be confirmed fact and we should allow for the possibility that this has been Favre-Camp-Distorted again.

That said, now, back to assuming this did happen. Good point here from Profootballtalk.com – how do Grant and his agent feel right about now? The Packers aren’t holding substantive talks with them while they fly around apparently offering millions to a player for him NOT to play!

Packers being ridiculous now…

July 31, 2008

Brother Steve and I were just talking about “The Bribe”. Unbelievable. I simply cannot believe this is what the Packers resorted to. The Packers sure better get info out asap as to what conditions were present that made an offer like this reasonable because to those of us not inside the circle, I don’t see how this could be construed as anything other than a desperate bride. Absolutely ridiculous. The Packers may come out and mask this under the guise of future PR engagements etc but come on, that is ridiculous. Considering all that’s been said, I think it may take a while for him to be a credible Packers ambassador anyway. That is clearly not what this is for. The $20 million was simply to coax him into permanent retirement so that the team can move in the direction TT wants the team to move in. I just find this development shocking. I have never heard of a team trying to bribe a player to stay retired.

One important factor here is that despite Favre’s recent detruth problem if you will, the team should have known Favre well enough to know that appeasing him with money wouldn’t work. As Bus Cook has already apparently said (according to Steve from Sirius radio), this offer likely won’t affect Favre much and he will most likely show up in camp on Friday. Offering Favre more money under the veil of PR is like offering me more ants in my den – just not something either of us need right now.

Suggestion for Favre situation

July 30, 2008

Should Favre be given chance to compete for the starting job? This is a question that I have been considering the last few days. I didn’t want to have to consider this, but it’s a legit question right now. I find it somewhat curious that the Packers have maintained the stance that Favre cannot compete for the starting job. I know it’s a hard-line stance that they developed mostly due to Favre’s wavering and the significant issues this continues to present. And, I understand that the team had made a decision to move forward which has led to subsequent, key organizational decisions (like implementing Rodgers-specific plays, figuring life with $12M more in cap space, drafting 2 QBs…despite TT always stating he doesn’t draft for need…).

But not allowing Favre to compete for the starting spot would seem to fly in the face of McCarthy’s philosophy of “open competition”. Every year we hear about the various open competitions going on. There was an open competition between Mason Crosby and Dave Rayner last year and despite Rayner being a solid incumbent who competed at a high level, Crosby was able to beat him out because it was “open”. The Poppinga/Chillar battle has apparently been an “open” competition as have the never-ending battles for the guard spots. There is an open punter competition and right now at least an open RB competition. There is an open competition at safety with Rouse factoring in and an open competition for the 3rd cornerback spot. There is an open competition at WR, at TE, etc.

So, it would seem to me that one reasonable compromise would be to have the Packers tell Favre he can compete for the starting job against Rodgers (and Brohm) and that in exchange for doing so, the team would like Favre to agree to restructuring his contract to a 1 year $8 million deal and an a clear agreement now that Favre would make any retirement decision at the end of this season by February of 2009 (after the Super Bowl) at the latest. If the money isn’t critical to Favre, he’d agreed to this as a way of apologizing for his part in this mess. And this would enable Favre to start waffling now. And, let’s face it, while Favre was great last year, he’s old for an NFL player and he may be getting to a playing age where a younger guy may finally catch up with him and be able to outperform him. Having an open competition would also enable Rodgers (and Brohm) a real chance to simply outperform Favre in camp and win the job. Frankly, it’s what Rodgers would have to do right now anywhere else in the entire NFL if he weren’t a Packer – so it makes some sense. If he is indeed so well-versed in the offense as they say and the offense flows really well through him, he would have the opportunity to start which would still be an improvement from last year where he didn’t have this opportunity.

(Interesting note: one guy you have to feel for in all of this is Matt Flynn. He was probably all fired up to come to Green Bay where he could fight for the #2 spot, but if Favre does return, he may end up being the odd man out. I’ll bet Flynn’s family and friends are pulling hard for a Favre retirement or a last-minute trade!)

(Interesting note #2: interesting candor by some other players re their preferences (in McGinn’s jsonline article this morning, like Ryan Pickett very clearly wanting Favre to come back).


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