Author Archive

Odds and dead-ends

August 7, 2008

Editor’s Note: Jim posted this nearly early Wednesday evening and because of an editing glitch, I neglected to post it until now.  It holds up incredibly well.  My apologies. SFH

It is clear this saga is ending the way it began: with very clear indications that if TT had simply shown Favre love and attention the Pack would have its best shot at winning in camp and at the helm. I manage a bunch of people, some I like more than others. Some need special attention I don’t much care to give. That is the job of a manager. It does not take an advance degree in human studies to realize Favre craves and needs public displays of affection – much more than your average guy. He wants to be loved, often and in a very expressive way. He thrives on emotion, and this cuts many ways. It allows him to play through pain, celebrate like a punch-drunk kid after a TD and throw a temper tantrum when he feels slighted.

He wanted love when he was considering retiring, when he retired, when he considered unretiring and then cried for it the past month in very public and embarrassing ways.

It is clear from the public comments of the past 48 hours that a simple realization of this – and some public groveling – would have lured Favre back. There is plenty of blame to go around here, folks. But it is indisputable that if TT had done his job and played to the strengths and weaknesses of his star player much of this could have been avoided. Yes, that would have required TT to show extreme humility and maybe even a hint of weakness. TT did not want to do that – and we may never know why.


Shut the hell up, Brett!

August 5, 2008

It is no secret I want Favre on the field. But his inability to communicate anything privately is inexcusable. His ESPN interview is a joke. Sir Stephen Hayes is dead-on about the growing pile of BS Favre is dumping on Lambeau. He says he wants punchers chance at the starting job. They apparently offered it — and now he thinks that is not best for the team. I don’t think even old Bus Cook could stop himself from choking on that line.

I know Favre is posturing – and much better than TT and Ari at doing so. But it’s hard to read his comments and think he will be back on the field anytime soon. Consider this:

“The problem is that there’s been a lot of damage done and I can’t forget it. Stuff has been said, stories planted, that just aren’t true. Can I get over all that? I doubt it.”

Favre says the unforgivable sins were leaked stories such as the one that he considered unretiring in March, which I think the evidence proves is largely true, and the cell phone scandal, which the evidence shows was false.

“Then,” Favre said, “they tried to buy me off to stay retired.”

Why can’t he keep his mouth closed for one day to see how the meetings proceed and progress. If he wants a trade – and it is clear he wants to play for the Vikings – then his best bet is to dupe the Vikings into forking over a round one pick now. He won’t accomplish this by disclosing through his spokemen, I mean ESPN, that he plans to force his way out of town.

Cooler heads can still prevail, and I certainly hope they do. But TT and Favre are like a divorced couple who beat and battered each other and lost all capacity for context and forgiveness. And it us, the children of the Pack, who suffer.

The Verdict: delayed

August 5, 2008

Another night of restlessness, folks. McCarthy has postponed the new conference set for Monday night. My guess is his meeting turned bitter and personal. The COACH must be steaming at the self indulgence of football’s biggest flipflopper. It his job to rip into Favre and ask him “what in the hell were you thinking? This is a team sport and you PUBLICLY flirted with our enemy. You humilated our GM. You humiliated yourself and scuffed your legacy. You disrespected your friends and teammates.”

McCarthy looks weak. He knows it. Somehow, he must project strength at this press conference in the days ahead. Lets face it: he was bullied. Now he must convince the team he controls the bully. Aint gonna happen. If I were him – or ARI – I would leak to the press the details of how he ripped into Brett, threatened to bench him for the season and only relented when Favre expressed remorse and vowed to repair the damage. (hopefully, this is what is transpiring as I write). Even then, we all know Favre is bigger than McCarthy, bigger than the team. I can live with that.

We need this Days of Our Lives sage to end. I still maintain the end will begin with Favre named starter – my guess by week two of pre-season. Then its all about the game. We can return to debating the Williams trade and our aged secondary. We can lament the lack of offseason additions and wonder if Thompson is a genius with an eye for your talent or a moron who can’t land the big fish. I long for those days.

Favre to compete for starting job!

August 3, 2008

This is worth a full read: It comes from Silverstein, so we know it reflects packer thinking…

Green Bay — The Green Bay Packers are through negotiating with quarterback Brett Favre on a marketing deal and they are anticipating him reporting for training camp Monday and being on the field as soon as he passes his physical, a Packers source said.

Another source close to the club, said that the Packers have agreed to allow Favre to compete with Aaron Rodgers for the starting job and he won’t necessarily be the backup this season. Trade talks with Favre have not advanced and coach Mike McCarthy is expected to come up with a plan that will split the practice repetitions with Rodgers.

The Packers released this statement from president Mark Murphy:

“Sixteen years after Brett Favre came to the Packers, he is returning for a seventeenth season. He has had a great career with our organization and although we built this year around the assumption that Brett meant what he said about retiring, Brett is coming back. We will welcome him back and turn this situation to our advantage.

“Frankly, Brett’s change of mind put us in a very difficult spot. We now will revise many actions and assumptions about our long-term future, all predicated on Brett’s decision last March to retire. As a result of his decision, we invested considerably in a new and different future without Brett and we were obviously moving in that direction. That’s why this wasn’t easy. Having crossed the Rubicon once when Brett decided to retire, it’s very difficult to reorient our plans and cross it again in the opposite direction – but we’ll put this to our advantage.

“Brett will be in camp tomorrow. Although there has been uncertainty regarding Brett’s return, Ted Thompson and Coach McCarthy had previously discussed this and have had a plan in place. Coach McCarthy will talk to the team and the quarterbacks about the plan moving forward, and after he has done that we will share it publicly.

“No matter what, I look forward to another successful season for the Packers and our fans. This has been a tough situation, but the Packers will make the most of it.”

McCarthy is expected to address the quaerterback situation after the scrimmage tonight.

Me & Favre

August 2, 2008

I am thrilled to guest blog here. I love the site – and your shared addiction to everything GB. Thanks to Hayes for the kind introduction. My story is pretty simple: grew up in Oshkosh and loved the Pack back to my childhood days when they sucked and the only thrill you could really get was betting on whether Randy Wright would faint or whether Charles Martin would kill someone.

I have been as consumed with you with the Favre saga. You guys were dead-on to chronicle Favre’s BS from the earliest days of this mess. I have spent countless hours reading the pro-Farve side from Mortenson and King to the Packer spin via the JSONLINE (which, if I can disgress for a moment, has been criminal in its inability to crack the code on reporting in real-time on the pack. They should own this beat, and they often don’t).

There is no doubt Favre deserves the bulk of the blame here. His drama, his indecision and his disregard for the Packers image is inexcusable. His self-indulgence is breathtaking. His biggest sin, to me, is flirting with the Vikings. Who cares if it amounts to tampering? The guy actively courted our hated rivals and a team he knows stands in the way of our playoff run. This quote says it all:

“My intentions have been to play, and with Green Bay,” Favre told ESPN’s Werder. “They say no, so I still want to play in this division for obvious reasons, which I made clear to management. If they won’t let me play in Green Bay, let me play against you. That’s where I am.”


Still with all the said, I think the solution is simple: LET FAVRE REPORT AND BE NAMED STARTING QB MONDAY. Here is my reasoning. This is football not church. The goal is to win and win now. There is no doubt he gives us the best chance to win – that is indisputable. The man has earned forgiveness. He has literally bled for this team, restored this team, and won for this team. Would you rather have Ted Thompon’s principles and a content Aaron Rogers or 13 wins?

It took me few weeks and many debates with my buddy Denny to get to this point.

We all tend to hyperventilate about sports the way we do about politics. All will be forgotten if Favre reports Monday and plays the way he did last season. If his skills have diminished (i think he has three years left in him) than pull the hook and put Rogers in. Yes, Thompson will look like a fool if he flipflops. Yes, some players will be agitated. Yes, it sets a terrible precedent.

But how will everyone look and feel if Favre bolts – and Rogers crumbles? A lot worse, I think.

I am very sympathetic to the antiFavre take. I am also intrigued about Rogers potential. But I would be happy to wait another year or so to find if he is the real deal. We already have one of those – at least when it comes to performance on the field.