Should we take Brett Favre at his word? If you read what I wrote about his retirement, you know that I’m not so sure we’ve seen the last of him, and the latest reports that his agent has been quietly gauging interest from NFL teams other than the Packers about a possible trade seem just a tad too realistic.
Sure, Favre’s agent is in full denial mode about those inquiries now. And hey, if you can’t trust the agent of a high profile athlete these days, who can you trust? Let’s just say whenever an agent speaks for a player, one is probably safe in believing the exact opposite of what was said.
So let’s go with the assumption that yes, the quarterback everyone loves to call a warrior/gunslinger is hoping to move to another team. But why? Even without Favre’s dream target (Randy Moss), the Packers needed only to win a home playoff game to get to the Super Bowl just a few months ago. What possible team has an opening at quarterback that would go further than the Packers next year?
My guess is it doesn’t matter. Favre isn’t interested in becoming a TV analyst (for now, anyway), and there would be no quicker way for him to pick up five to ten million dollars. While I’m sure Favre wants to win another Super Bowl, the feeling here is that he just wants to get out of the cold.
In Green Bay the options for getting to the Super Bowl are as follows: host the NFC Championship Game in arctic conditions, or play on the road against a better team and hope for an upset. After playing like a guy who during overtime looked mostly interested in the postgame shower against the Giants in Lambeau, Favre probably figured he had three choices after that game:
1. Play for the Packers next year and just deal with the cold.
2. Publicly demand a trade (something he came as close to doing as one can without actually spelling it out before last season), and in the process turn his back on one of the most loyal and emotional groups of fans in the country.
Ever mindful of his legacy, Favre chose retirement. But like most athletes who are retiring for reasons other than injury or lack of interest from other teams, Favre is having second thoughts. After all, he can’t yet even say the quote of the year (behind “Milkshake” of course), “I’m a man! I’m 40!” He has no debilitating injuries, and rich people generally like to get richer.
Let’s just say if Jeff Garcia starts the 2008 season as Brett Favre’s backup in Tampa Bay, don’t be too surprised.
Chad Johnson Another Step Closer to Leaving Cincinnati
The other major story yesterday (even more evidence of the NFL’s hold on the American sports fan — during opening week in baseball, the end of the most competitive season the NBA has had in years and the eve of Final Four weekend, the two main headlines Thursday had to do with NFL offseason rumors) was Chad Johnson giving yet another interview questioning the direction the Bengals are taking and whether or not he fits in to their plans.
Hey McNolan: turn off the “Linebackers of the Senior Bowl” video, wipe the drool off your chins and get on the phone with Cincinnati! With the Joe Staley trade ruining the first round, and the Lance Briggs tampering debacle severely bruising the middle rounds, the 49ers should just forget the draft all together this year and go after the man called Ocho Cinco.
Mike Nolan, especially, should make a huge push for this. Surely the Bengals would take the 49ers’ bastardized first round pick (No. 29, from the Colts) for Johnson, who has done everything short of tearing up a photo of Marvin Lewis’s face on Saturday Night Live. If Nolan thinks he has any more than one more playoff-free year left before the Yorks pull the plug on him and his Reebok suits, he’s delusional. The time to win for Nolan is now, and a tandem of Isaac Bruce and Bryant Johnson are nowhere near enough to help the 49ers reach 8-8, let alone the playoffs.