Favre produced a lot of positives in only one season
If Saddam Hussein had helped us capture Bin Laden, we'd probably have accepted him, too.
It didn't take more than one completion for the faithful purple congregation to cozy up to Brett Favre. We didn't care that he played for the Cheeseheads. We didn't care that he helped the Packers humiliate us more than once in his career. He was ours now and he was our ticket to the Super Bowl.
Unfortunately, there were no more tickets remaining as the Vikings got up to the window. Hungry and dejected fans are now on the outside looking in, much like a homeless man peering into a bakery window.
Along the way, however, the Vikings were at least put back on the NFL map. Favre made sure of that. Sports analysts everywhere talked about the Vikings and their legendary leader. He was the missing piece to the puzzle, they said. The one piece that could take a team filled with Pro Bowl players to the Big Show. After all, that was the reason he unretired for the second time. He felt this was the best chance he had to go out with a bang.
Unfortunately, his arm misfired when he needed it most.
Even if Favre decides not to honor the second of his two-year contract and returns to his tractor in Mississippi, he created many positive things in only one season.
Before Favre: The number of fans wearing Vikings jerseys was sparse. And the jersey fans seemed to be donning more than any other had the number 84 on it and the name MOSS on the back even though he hasn't been in a Vikings uniform since 2004. Now, it seems like everyone owns some type of Vikings jersey. And the number 4 with FAVRE on the back dominates the choice of fans.
Before Favre: The number 4 in regards to the Vikings usually referred to the number of Super Bowls the team has lost. Now, the number will never quite be worn by another Vikings player the way Favre wore it. It simply won't look the same on another player.
Before Favre: Rice was something we threw to toast a bride and groom. Now it's something we toast defensive backs with.
Before Favre: The joke was: "What has six legs and no arms? Answer: The three Vikings quarterbacks. Now the joke could be: "If Favre decides to come back again next season, what number will the Vikings assign him? Answer: 401K.
The way Favre was beat up against the New Orleans Saints in the NFC Championship on Sunday was reminiscent of Archie Manning, who was probably the most famous Viking to wear number 4 before Favre, getting sacked 11 times on Oct, 28, 1984, against the Chicago Bears when he was 35 years old and well past his prime. It was ugly and you almost couldn't bear to watch as an old man (in NFL terms) was repeatedly hit by 300-pound linemen who could sprint like running backs. It seems like Favre was sacked almost that many times against the Saints. But he wasn't officially sacked even once in that game. But he was tossed around all day like Don Zimmer after he tried to go after Pedro Martinez.
All season for the Vikings, Favre played like he was 25. He probably felt 125 on Monday morning. It's likely that his skin tone now matches the color of his helmet.
Now the question for the umpteenth year in a row is "Will he retire or will he come back and give us one more year of hope?"
The answer to that probably won't be revealed until the third preseason game next year when he starts to get the itch to play again.
Former Packers Darren Sharper, Ryan Longwell and Favre have already played big roles for the Vikings at one time or another. If Favre doesn't come back, maybe the purple brass can start figuring out a way to lure Aaron Rodgers away from the Cheeseheads.