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Dear Diary: A Brett Favre Football Flashback

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Brett Favre’s Hall of Fame career will be commemorated this Thursday night when his #4 jersey is officially retired by the Green Bay Packers.   And for the duration of the brief ceremony, all the cheeseheads can celebrate his accomplishments and forget about the fact that, for a while, they hated his guts just as much as I have for most of the past two and a half decades.

I’m a Vikings fan so hating any and all things Packers is kind of an occupational hazard. That said, I’ll readily admit that, for quite a while, I had a grudging respect for the things Favre was able to do when he stepped onto a football field. It was a lot of the off-the-field crap I couldn’t deal with. And when he actually ended up playing for the Vikings….   What can I say? Those were dark days, and rather lucrative ones for my therapist.

Brett Favre holds a lot of NFL records, including leading the league in drama. Do you remember all the retirement nonsense? I’m gonna quit. I’m not gonna quit. It went on for years and I can only imagine what it was like for the teams involved. I think I have a pretty good handle on what it was like for Favre. As evidence, I present to you the following diary entries. For the record, I need to make it clear that they have no basis in fact… at least as far as I know.

 

*Reader’s not: the Ted Brett refers to is Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson, and Brad is Brad Childress, former Minnesota Vikings head coach.

  

April 1, 2006

  Dear Diary,

    The draft is only two weeks away. Ted called me this morning. I don’t like that guy. Just because he’s the general manager, he thinks he knows everything. He says the Packers really want me back. Duh. Of course they want me. I know I can still play. I just don’t know if I want to. I really should give them my answer soon. I think I’ll go fishing.

             Brett

  

April 17, 2006

 Dear Diary,

    The Packers just drafted Aaron Rodgers. Bastards! How can they do that to me? I’m a hero. I’m a legend. I’m Brett Favre. I still don’t know if I want to play.  

             Brett

  

April 1, 2007

Dear Diary,

    The draft is only two weeks away. Ted called me this morning. He told me I had to make a decision soon. Yeah right. What are they going to do, draft another quarterback? Maybe Aaron Rodgers needs help holding that clipboard. He didn’t play last year. He’s not going to play this year. I’ll return to the Packers but I’m not going to let them know until I’m good and ready. Why should I? I’m Brett Favre.

             Brett

  

July 1, 2007

 Dear Diary,

    Training camp opens in a month. I don’t know if I can do it. I mean, I want to play. At least I think I want to play. But Ted is such a jerk. If he’d just signed Randy Moss like I told him to–If Randy was with the team I’d definitely want to play. A guy like that can make anybody look good. But Ted told me I was a quarterback not a GM. It wasn’t up to me to make personnel decisions. He’s such a jerk. I’m going to retire… I think.

             Brett

  

January 23rd, 2008

 Dear Diary,

    I love football! Now everyone knows I can still play. I’ll probably play another five years. I won the division and tomorrow I take on the Giants at Lambeau. That’s my home turf. This one’s in the bag. I’ll get that second ring after all.

             Brett

 

January 24th, 2008

 Dear Diary

    I hate football. I’m going to retire. I can’t believe I threw an interception in overtime. It was too cold… and the receiver ran the wrong route. It’s not my fault.

             Brett

 

February 11, 2008

 Dear Diary

    I announced my retirement today. It was tough. I can still play. But Ted is such a jerk. I can’t write anymore. My tears are making the paper soggy.

             Brett

 

June 10, 2008

 Dear Diary,,

    I can’t believe it. The Packers don’t want me anymore. I mean, I know I retired and everything but I wasn’t serious. They should have known that. I bet Ted had something to do with this. Well, I’m still going to play. Retired or not, I’m still the quarterback of the Green Bay Packers.

             Brett

 

July 20, 2008

Dear Diary,

   I’m not the quarterback of the Green Bay Packers. How can they do this to me? I’m Brett Favre. Ted told me I could compete for the starting job. Whatever. I’m going to play for the Vikings.

             Brett

 

July 26, 2008,

Dear Diary,

   I’m not going to play for the Vikings. The Packers won’t release me. Why not? I’m Brett Favre. Ted is such a jerk. If they won’t release me they’ll have to trade me. I can’t be traded to the Vikings…yet. That’s fine. I’ve got a plan.

            Brett,

 

August 4, 2008

Dear Diary,

   I signed with the Jets today. It’s cool. I missed pretty much all of training camp and I’ve got my own locker room. I don’t even have to talk to the other players. Coach wants me to learn the playbook by Tuesday. Whatever. I know how to throw the football. Besides, I’m only going to be here for a year.

             Brett

 

February 20, 2009

Dear Diary,

   I retired today. I even squeezed out a few tears for the cameras. It’s all good. I threw 9 picks in my last 5 games. The Jets don’t even want me back. I’ll ask for my release right after the draft. Minnesota here I come!

             Brett

 

April 18, 2009

Dear Diary,

   The Jets took a quarterback with their first pick in the draft. I love it when a plan comes together. My release is in the bag.

            Brett

 

May 1, 2009

Dear Diary,

   The Vikings don’t want me unless I can actually throw the ball. What’s up with that? It’s not like I really want to play anymore. I just want to stick it to Ted., I’m going to have to think about this. I can’t throw unless I have surgery. Then there’s all that rehab and stuff. Maybe I’ll just stay retired.

             Brett

 

June 15, 2009

Dear Diary,

   I just had shoulder surgery. Now the Vikings want to see if I can throw. Why am I doing all this? Maybe I should just burn Ted’s house down and be done with it.

             Brett

 

July 1, 2009

Dear Diary,

   Brad just called. He wants my decision. He wants me there for the start of camp. He wants me to work with the first team as much as possible. He said some other stuff too. I wasn’t really listening. The Vikings are offering me about $10 mill for one season. I heard that. The way I see it, that’s about $5 mill for each game I plan on winning.

             Brett  

 

July 24, 2009

Dear Diary,

   I told the Vikings I was going to stay retired. I don’t think they believed me. I want to play… I think. I just don’t want to go to training camp. That’s too much work. I’m Brett Favre. Why should I have to do two-a-days and live in a dorm? I’m too good for that. I’ll join the team but not until training camp is over. Brad said it’s now or never. Blah, blah, blah. I’ll show up when I feel like it. It’s not like they’re selling a ton of Sage Rosenfels jerseys.  

             Brett

 

August 18, 2009

Dear Diary,

   Do you think I look good in purple? I’m a Viking. It’s what I’ve always wanted. Well, that’s what I’ll tell everyone. And now Brad wants me to learn the playbook. Whatever. He’s a jerk too. Doesn’t he get it? I don’t care if the Vikings go 2 – 14, as long as those two wins are against the Packers. Take that, Ted. Oh, and Aaron Rodgers can kiss my butt too!

             Brett

 

And here’s the epilogue. As a member of the Vikings, Brett Favre’s 2009 season was arguably the best of his career. He took the team all the way to the NFC title game. It was against the Saints, and the New Orleans defenders treated Favre with all the respect you’d normally devote to a birthday piñata. He was hit, battered and bruised, and few flags were ever thrown. It was well after the fact, well after the Saints’ Super Bowl victory, that we all learned about Bountygate and all the subsequent fines and penalties. No point dwelling on that again now, but maybe I’ll see if my old therapist has an opening this afternoon.

 

If you like what you’ve read, please subscribe to this blog or my Turn the Page book review blog. Visit michaelsova.com, or find me on Facebook and Twitter @Micsova. Also, please pick up a copy of A Shot at Redemption, and look for my new suspense novel, Parlor City Paradise, due out in 2016.

 

 

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