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Sic Semper Tyrannis

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Dear Green Bay Packers...

The following post was written by Kevin Binversie.

It's never easy to get a text message from 620WTMJ informing you your legendary quarterback has decided to rip your heart out. But that's exactly what I got yesterday. After the shock wore off, the Tweet sent out, the anger pretty much set in. After being yo-yo'ed by this guy for the past three off-seasons, he does this. "Thanks, I'm coming back, not with you, to anyone I want to; and oh..let's still be friends," is about the best way to put it.

Why not just date our sister, leave her at the church alter, then show up at Poker Night the following week like nothing's happened?

You'd think a night of sleep would have made the anger go away. And for a while it did...then I read this story at the Wisconsin State Journal by Jason Wilde this morning.

GREEN BAY — Brett Favre had his chance to come back to the Green Bay Packers at the end of March, but the legendary quarterback reneged on an agreement then to unretire — part of the reason why the Packers aren't now welcoming back the legendary quarterback.

According to two NFL sources, Favre informed the Packers during the annual NFL meetings in late March — less than a month after his tearful March 6 retirement news conference — that he wanted to play again.'s Jay Glazer first reported that information Friday afternoon.

The State Journal's sources along with Glazer's sources said that, at the time, Packers coach Mike McCarthy and general manager Ted Thompson told Favre they would welcome him back, and plans were made for him to return — a colossal commitment to a player who had just publicly said he no longer wanted to play anymore, wiping away tears while saying he didn't have "anything left to give."

In fact, Thompson — he has been criticized publicly by Favre's agent, James "Bus" Cook, and by members of Favre's family for supposedly not wanting the quarterback back — made the final call on whether the team would welcome Favre's return. Thompson agreed to bring back Favre, even though it meant forcing heir apparent Aaron Rodgers to sit yet another year behind the future Hall of Famer.

The Packers went so far as to charter a plane to Mississippi to finalize the agreement.

But two days before the meeting was set to take place, Favre called and informed McCarthy that he had changed his mind yet again and had decided that he wanted to stay retired.

Burned by the change of heart, the team decided to commit fully to moving on without Favre, the sources said. Rodgers was told the starting job was his, and the Packers drafted a pair of quarterbacks — second-rounder Brian Brohm and seventh-rounder Matt Flynn — as backups. They also began altering the offense to accomodate Rodgers' strengths.

Then, three weeks ago, Favre contacted McCarthy and said he had the "itch" to play again, and the team was cool to the idea. That led to what transpired Friday, when the Packers received a letter from Cook asking for Favre's unconditional release.

For those who aren't from the Green Bay media market, Jason Wilde isn't just the Packers beat writer for the State Journal. He's a frequent commentator on WBAY 2's "Monday Night Countdown," a MNF set-up show. He's usually the one with the best inside information about what's actually going on behind the scenes in the front office.

Which means, this news is likely very, very true.

It's becoming pretty clear to me that Brett Favre never got along with Packers GM Ted Thompson from Day One of their time together and has used his status as "Living Legend" with the Green and Gold faithful to make them side with him. Favre never liked the idea of having the team build through the NFL Draft, where they got young, untested, and unproven talent to re-build the defense, running game, and receiving corps. This meant time to watch them grind out the rust and rub out the green in the young talent (including his own eventual replacement); time Favre knew was not on his side in his waning years of play. What Brett wanted was proven, experienced free agents who were dedicated to winning now, things Thompson wasn't willing to get or cripple the team financially.

Last year's very public blow-up about the team's inability to get WR Randy Moss clearly showed the dynamic between the two at work.

Did Thompson fail Favre? Who knows, but when you create the youngest team to ever reach the NFC Championship Game, missing the Super Bowl in Overtime, it shows he was indeed; on to something.

Was the retirement in March for real then? Likely. Favre's a very passionate, emotional guy who likely let the guilt of how last season ended get to him. And he wouldn't be the first human being to do something rash because of the guilt they were feeling.

Everything after that seems to be an extension of his personal war with Ted Thompson.

What should the Pack now do with Favre given the situation that's now been tossed in their lap? Who knows, but I don't envy them for the PR nightmare they've been handed. The team clearly is not going to release Favre as he requests, which sets up a clear stalemate on all sides.

Admittedly, the vengeful, very angry, life-long Packers fan in me says there's only one thing the team should do...hold Favre hostage, like he's held them.