Sunday, August 10, 2008

Brett Favre, Take Two

Brett Favre's status for the upcoming season has dominated the sports news for the last three weeks or so, and is now finally resolved with his trade to the New York Jets.

But like so many of our other contemporary controversies, there was more drama than real news. Favre wanted to play, the Green Bay Packers wanted to protect their memories of him as a Packer, and failing that wanted to keep him from playing for another team that could beat them.

So, what happened? Green Bay offered to pay Favre $20 to $25 million to stay retired as a player and do some sort of more or less irrelevant front office work. I didn't get the point of that deal at all. The Packers lose a boatload of dough, and Favre doesn't get to play.

The whole thing becomes a lot simpler for either party when they take care of the things they can control instead of the ones they can't. Favre wants the freedom to play for any team that he wants, which would be a very reasonable thing to want except for the fact that he's under contract to the Packers. The Pack wishes Favre would just fade into the sunset, which conveniently ignores the fact that #4 gets a vote in that election. Once both parties understood the leverage that the other one had, the whole thing got settled in a day or two.

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