Time For The Packers And Favre To Make Up
by Ryan Minnigh
Jul 01, 2014 7:59 AM EDT
Family reunions are not always the most fun place to be, but we all know we need to go to reunite with our relatives eventually. Brett Favre, are you listening? Green Bay, how about you?
The Favre saga was one that had no end. Season after season, players, coaches and fans alike had to sit through months of anticipation waiting to see whether or not Favre would return. It was painful for all parties but eventually, the saga was too much for the Packers and they needed to move on. The New York Jets and the Minnesota Vikings then had the tall task of dealing with all this. However, the depature of Favre from the Packers left a bad taste in the mouths of all parties involved.
Favre was left feeling betrayed by his team, and the Packers felt that they let Favre get away with it one too many times. The fans, meanwhile, were left to decide for themselves whose side they were really on.
No matter the immediate results, Favre was certainly not welcomed back into Lambeau Field in a Vikings uniform. Nonetheless, Favre has ended his playing career, and the time to make up has come. The past is the past and everyone must move on and welcome him back to Lambeau.
Favre is an immortal name not just in Green Bay, but in the NFL. Favre set many records during his time in the league, including most while wearing the green and gold. In 2007 alone for the Packers, Favre became the NFL's all-time touchdown leader, winningest quarterback and finished off the career achievement of beating 31 other teams in the NFL (Favre would beat the Packers as a member of the Vikings, making him the only quarterback to beat all 32).
Now remember, that is just one season of work. Favre also put together three MVP seasons, nine trips to the Pro Bowl and made two Super Bowls, winning Super Bowl XXXI. However, it was not just Favre giving back to Green Bay during his career -- it was Green Bay standing behind their signal-caller.
Are we so quick to forget Favre was cast off the Atlanta Falcons team and was just thrown into a game one Sunday for the Packers? The fans and management alike never left Favre's side. Even when his father died and his consecutive game streak was in jeopardy, everyone stood behind him. He did not disappoint on Monday Night Football, even when we was not supposed to play.
The history of Favre and the Packers is legendary. There is simply no other way to describe the legacy that Favre left in Green Bay besides legendary. However, tension flooded over after the trade to the Jets and got even hotter after Favre signed with the Vikings. Tension did in fact run high, but there are many reasons bygons should be bygons.
Let us not forget that many legendary players finished out their careers with other teams. Remember Johnny Unitas as a Charger? Joe Namath finishing his career with the Rams? Legendary Steelers RB Franco Harris finishing his career with the Seahawks? If you think back, do you truly remember any of these legends in these uniforms? The green and gold surrounding that No. 4 is the only way Favre will be remembered. He spent 16 seasons with the Packers and there is no case for his legendary status as a Falcon, Jet or Viking.
Favre did nothing of historical significance besides surpass a few more minor milestones in his final three seasons. There were no MVP awards, no Super Bowl appearances and there was certainly no Cheesehead following of fandom either. Favre left his legacy in Green Bay when he left in 2008.
For Favre, this is the ultimate closure of a stellar NFL career. Favre knows now that the end of his career was a less than ideal ending to one of the best quarterback careers in NFL history. However, coming back to a warm Lambeau Field welcome would put an end to any tension still hungover from previous years.
Aaron Rodgers is currently advocating a Favre coming home party as well. Rodgers even offered up the idea of sitting down with Bart Starr and Favre and discussing their NFL careers. Think of the quarterback lineage that would be present in the room at that time. Rodgers' first mentor upon entering the NFL was Favre and Rodgers appreciates having that type of leadership before him. If it wasn't for Favre showing Rodgers the ropes and eventually giving way to him, there may be no fourth Super Bowl title in Green Bay.
However, the talk of having Favre return to Lambeau is still uneasy for some people. The fact of the matter is, Favre deserves a return to the stadium and team he helped win consistently for 16 seasons. Fans are now seeing that a return is almost guaranteed and it is becoming easier to come to grips with each day. Fans are looking back, remembering the good times and realizing that Favre was their quarterback. Favre was their leader. Favre was king for 16 seasons. Plus, the fans need closure just as much as Favre. The fans and Favre alike need to know that no matter what happened from 2008-2010, his legacy will be immortalized in Green Bay.
So what does this mean if Favre returns?
Does he deserve to have his No. 4 retired by Green Bay? Absolutely. With all the accolades in his career, Favre will surely see his number retired in Green Bay. The question is not so much if, but when. The Packers need to commemorate Favre with a ceremony and they need to do it soon. While all tension has seemed to breeze over, the time has become right to bring Favre back.
Think of what could've been without Favre in Green Bay. Atlanta could've used his talent to be a force throughout the 90s, while the Packers would've stuck with Don Majkowski. Think long and hard which player had the better career.
It is time for Favre to return to his rightful city one last time.