Really? A Bribe?


Is this a joke?  Just when you think it cannot get any crazier, Greg Bedard reports, citing a story from WTMJ in Milwaukee, that Packers offered Brett Favre $20 million to stay retired.

I’m speechless.  I have come up with any number of completely ridiculous solutions to this fiasco, but it never once crossed my mind to pay Brett Favre money that he is not owed in order to convince him to stay on his farm.

Those who have not followed the many twists and turns of this entire drama cannot understand why Ted Thompson is refusing to bring Favre back.  As someone who originally wanted Thompson to do just that and has been pushed to the point where I now want Favre gone, I found myself increasingly sympathetic to the arguments the Packers were making.  Favre’s inability to tell the truth and his public, low-class trashing of Ted Thompson have made him a most unsympathetic figure in all of this.

But he still deserved better than a bribe.  As Bedard writes: “If WTMJ’s report is true, it could potentially cripple the Packers in court of public opinion as it could be interpreted as a bribe to Favre, a player that has said he wants to continue his career.”

There is little doubt that Favre’s camp leaked this and, as noted, they have been known to shade the truth at every opportunity.  So it’s probably wise to reserve judgment until the Packers provide their side of the story — something they’d better do damn quickly.

Here’s an idea: Don’t talk to Favre or Bus Cook again.  Seemingly every time they do — think of the Thompson-Favre conversations this weekend — the Packers end up disputing one or more of the claims Favre and his representatives make in the media.  And then trade him to the Vikings, end this compounding disaster, and beat him twice this year.

15 Responses to “Really? A Bribe?”

  1. Bill Walsh Says:

    If that’s true—and Steve notes, coming from the Favre camp, it’s very possible it isn’t—but if it is, the Murphy-Thompson brain trust should be ousted this second. Bringing Favre back or not, this should be a football decision. Handing over what’s in theory shareholders’ money to bribe a guy not to make your life difficult? That’s insanely irresponsible, not to mention sleazy. Has there been any indication that this was all about money to begin with? (In which case, the bribe is at least logical, if still detestable.) But from the outside, this all looks like Favre’s ego and need for love versus the Packers’ impatience with—and finally desire to be rid of—him.

  2. Bill Walsh Says:

    Oh, and disclaimer: I’m not even a Packers fan. (I’m just soaking in Packers news here in Wisconsin.) If Murphy’s offering bribes, St. Joe of Gibbs should go tell him he has sinned and must redeem his #29 jersey.

  3. Joe Mamma Says:

    Just wait til this hits goes beyond sports now and hits the Drudge Report.

    I think they’re offering to pay him because they must pay to break their side of an NFL contract which doesn’t allow them to lock him out of camp.

  4. Kristin Says:

    It’s official.
    I am in hell.

  5. Donald's Designated Driver Says:

    As ridiculous as this is—and it is ridiculous—apparently the Packers have been negotiating with Favre for several months now. I *think* the idea was that Favre would basically be a Packers spokesmen/celebrity endorser. He’s probably have to make certain public appearances, etc. And in exchange the Packers pay him 2 million a year for the next 10 years.

    Now, apparently the Packers are trying to use this as a bargaining chip, which seems like a pretty dumb idea. That said, with all the lies and spin coming out of Camp Favre, who knows what was actually said.

  6. verno329 Says:

    Kristin said:

    It’s official.
    I am in hell.

    You’ve got company. And its awfully hot down here.

  7. Ron La Canne Says:

    If this is true and I think it may be, it add credibility to my “conspiracy theory” state in the “Is Anyone Telling The Truth” post. An offer like that would be one of two things. Packer Desperation – possible. Favre Despiration – personal problems (Unkown) – also possible.

    Something is going on here that we know nothing of.

  8. Scott W Says:

    If this is true, it is a PR disaster. I can’t see Bob Harlan handling this situation in this manner..what must he be thinking.

    I don’t know who is running public relations for the Packers, but they should be fired or have their vendor contract torn up. If they don’t have a PR firm on retainer, they should hire one.

    Steve is right, the Packers need to get out in front of this story damn quickly.

    Move over Kristin and verno329, and please pass the gatorade, it is freaking hot here.

  9. Ron La Canne Says:

    Just heard – Packers now $30 million under the Cap. Would this deal count as Cap money? I guess they have the cash to resolve the Ryan Grant issue, right?

  10. PackerBelle Says:

    I think it depends on the specifics of the deal. Was this just $2 million a year to stay home? Or would it involve some sort of PR role for Favre? I think $2 million a year to do publicity and charity events on behalf of the Packers would not be a bad deal. It gives Favre something to do, keeps him associated with the Packers and football but keeps him out of the locker room.

    Plus, as his agent Bus Cook would get his payday and if he is contributing to the problem it might have lessened his insistence Brett play.

  11. Ron La Canne Says:

    I love your optimism Belle. Another tidbit to add to my “Conspiracy Theory”. Goodell’s office said he will not move Favre’s reinstatement forward yet. He wants to give Favre and GB more time to work things out. According to what I understand the reinstatemtn signing should have occurred within 24 hours of receipt. Now this has changed. What in the Hell is going on here?

  12. PackerBelle Says:

    I wish Goodell would either stay the heck out of this or tell Favre to go away or accept a trade somewhere. I wonder if the holding out on reinstating him is because Goodell is getting sick of Favre too. If he wanted to force the Packers hand to release Favre he would have signed it immediately. Not signing it likely helps the Packers which seems a change from earlier.

  13. MiamiJer Says:

    Are you guys nuts? Have you eaten too much cheese? Are you for real?

    What is this Favre conspiracy crap that I have been reading on this sorry blog all about? I can’t believe that you poeple still side with the GB front office after reading this nationally distributed AP story! Give me a break; you boys in Wisco need to grow up and smell reality brewing out there.

    Stop dissing Favre and look at the root of the problem. Brett told TT that he wanted to come back when he met him in MS on April 1st (less than a month after his retirement announcement). So what does Ted do? He talks with the Packer’s brass about Brett wanting to play again this year and now the truth about a bribe comes out. Yet Brett is still the bad guy?

    I’m sorry to break this to ya’all, but the sources came from within the Packer’s organization and the NFL itself. Stop blaming Brett for everything!

    Since the GB front office has now lost ALL credibility, it’s time for the Pack to cut Favre loose or trade him to the Vikings. It’s better that the team get something for an active player than nothing for a former retired player.

    Fire Packers GM Ted Thompson:


    Maybe someone should start a petition for Mark Murphy, too!

  14. Ron La Canne Says:

    Errr… Miami boy your facts on the April 1 date are wrong. You lack credibility.

  15. toolkien Says:

    And two and a half years later the “bribe” looks like the GB camp was trying its best to preserve Favre’s legacy, and given the Jets falling apart, Mangini getting fired, Jets players on NY radio ripping of Favre, the starting point of wang-gate, another retirement, hooking up with the Vikings, doing really well only to Favre-it in the end, retiring again, getting the requisite ego stroke to come back, falling flat on his face, finally getting Moss for a month through caterer-gate, another coach fired, and a smashed ankle, chin, and shoulder, he slinks off into retirement again.

    1) The team obviously did the right thing to stay away from Toxic Brett

    2) I think the “bribe” was the organization doing its best to compensate Brett and preserve his legacy and they knew what they were talking about.

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