Brett Favre is saying all the right things as the retired quarterback works toward an official reconciliation with the Green Bay Packers.
Last week, in an interview with WGR 550 in Buffalo, Favre admitted for the first time that he “was at fault” for his role in parting ways with the Packers in 2008.
This week, the three-time NFL Most Valuable Player had a variety of ways in which he praised the franchise that he led for 16 seasons. Some of Favre’s more surprising comments were about his former backup, Aaron Rodgers.
“Barring any injury, (Rodgers) will shatter everything I did there, except for maybe the consecutive games (streak),” Favre said on SiriusXM NFL Radio. “The guy has been tremendous. Great move on their part.”
The “great move” that Favre was talking about was when the Packers chose not to let him un-retire in 2008 and re-take his post as Green Bay’s starter. General manager Ted Thompson and head coach Mike McCarthy opted instead to go with Rodgers, who had sat on the bench behind Favre for the previous three seasons.
“Aaron has played extremely well, probably even better than anyone anticipated,” Favre told SiriusXM NFL Radio. “I knew he was capable of that and that’s why they drafted him (in the first round in 2005).
“I understood that they had a young quarterback who had tremendous potential, that they had to find out what he could do. And, quite frankly, I had probably my best year in 16 years that past season (in 2007), and there’s two ways to look at that. If you’re in the organization and you’re making decisions, you’ve got to feel like, ‘OK, he had a great year, but can he really duplicate that again at this age? Probably not. He’s probably maxed out.’ That’s kind of what I would have been thinking. Now, obviously my side of it is, ‘I think I still can play.'”
Favre, of course, went on to play three more NFL seasons; one with the New York Jets and two with the Minnesota Vikings.
The Favre-Rodgers topic had been a sensitive one for several years. Rodgers would often avoid any questions about Favre, as the two seemed far from friendly. But, after appearing on stage together during the NFL Honors show in February, Favre is trying to spin the story much differently.
“There were no problems between Aaron and I,” Favre said on SiriusXM NFL Radio. “I had no problem with him becoming the next quarterback for the Packers. It was bound to happen at some point. I have no problems with the success that he’s had. In fact, I’m proud of him.
“I can remember, pretty much all the time, Aaron would say, ‘Do you mind if I watch a little film with you’. This would be after people left on Wednesday or Thursday at 5:30 (p.m.). I’d say, ‘Sure.’ We got along fine, really.”
Despite the unfortunate way that Favre and the Packers ended their relationship five years ago, it’s all starting to be forgotten.
“Like we all know, time heals pretty much anything,” Favre told SiriusXM NFL Radio. “I think I’ve made numerous statements in regards to Green Bay and how I feel. My 16 years in Green Bay, I wouldn’t trade for anything. It was fun. We were good. If there was one wish I could have, it would be that we won more than one championship, but I wouldn’t change anything.
“It was a great ride for me; more than I ever dreamed of. To play in Green Bay, had I not ever played there, I wouldn’t know. It’s one of those things you don’t know what you’re missing. But it’s a special place. There is no place like it.”
Packers president and CEO Mark Murphy told FOXSportsWisconsin.com in May that he wants Favre “back in the family.” Rodgers mentioned in an interview with Jim Rome later that month that he wants it to happen before Favre’s likely first-ballot Hall of Fame induction in 2016.
Even though there is an open dialogue between Favre, Murphy and Rodgers, there doesn’t seem to be anything imminent.
“When will the day come that I go back? I don’t know that for certain,” Favre said on SiriusXM NFL Radio. “I think both sides agree there is no sense in rushing anything for the public. I don’t know what the response will be from the fans. I think there is a great deal of fans that respect the way I played, what I did for that organization. Because I know I’m very proud of what I left behind there.”