Monday, July 21, 2008

"Freedom Is Not Free"

Greetings G-Force.

My wife & I spent this past weekend in Washington DC and while you never want to compare the men of the battlefield to those of the football field, I feel compelled to metaphorically draw comparisons. To many, Brett Favre is an American Hero.

As individuals, we are all a product of our youth and we apply our life's experiences to our current environment. My Dad always says that if you were to take the Packers out of Green Bay, you would have Fargo, ND or Des Moines, IA. Figuratively speaking, while growing up in Green Bay, WI, Lambeau Field was my US Capitol. My Heroes were John Jefferson, James Lofton, Lynn Dickey, Eddie Lee Ivery, Paul Coffman, Tim Lewis, Mark Lee, Mark Murphy, John Anderson, and Tim Harris - to name a few.

While I was walking through the National Mall for the first time in my life this weekend, I was introduced to the Capital of the United States of America. I was reminded of historical truths that created this great Nation. For the majority of our population, regardless of whether you believe in voting for the right or for the left, you are PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN! Furthermore, whether you want us to stay in Iraq or whether you want us to leave tomorrow, we all want the same thing and that is the end result to equal a successful & triumphant victory in which the American legacy is held in honor.

As I walked through the World War II Memorial, I read a quotation from Admiral Chester W. Nimith that read:

"They fought together as Brothers - In Arms. They Died Together & Now They Sleep Side by Side. To them we have a solemn obligation."

As I sat in reflection on my plane ride home, I thought of how this related to the current state of the Green Bay Packers - Brett Favre relationship. After the NFC Championship last year, Ted Thompson remarked, "the difference between winning and losing in the NFL is so small, but the emotions you feel afterward, winning as opposed to losing, is so great that it’s really not fair. When you lose, it’s almost like a part of you died. When you win, you’ve never felt more alive.”

Brett Favre & Ted Thompson have Lived Together. They've Died Together. They've Slept Side by Side Together.

Blood. Sweat. Tears. It did not matter - Brett Favre stepped on the field for the Green Bay Packers.

3 MVPs. 442 Touchdown Passes. 286 Interceptions. A Super Bowl victory. A 6 interception playoff game. It did not matter - The Green Bay Packers love for Brett Favre did not waver.

Now, it's time for each other to honor their solemn obligation to one another. And I feel the obligation should rest squarely on Favre's shoulders. He should feel obliged to the Packers. While the Packers & Favre have been synonymous with one another for 16 years, Favre remains an employee of the Packers. If Favre is 100% committed to playing football, by Wednesday, he should tell the Packers that he is coming back and reporting on July 27 for the START of training camp. If he cannot commit by Wednesday, he should call Thompson and say that he is not going to play this year. If Favre gives commitment, the Packers should open their arms and welcome him back.

As I continued my reflection from my walk through the National Mall, my attention turned to the moment in which I walked through the Korean War Memorial, I read a sign that said "Freedom Is Not Free." If Favre wants back and the Packers genuinely do not want him back as the starter, they should make an honorable attempt to trade Favre. The last 24 hours have brought a 2nd and a 6th for Jason Taylor and a 2nd and a 5th for Jeremy Shockey. You know that Ted Thompson's pallet and appetite for trading just became wet. While Thompson may not want to be known as the man who traded Favre, if the Legend commits to coming back and the Packers do not want him, they must attempt to discover what is fair market value. The Dolphins, Bucs, Jags, Panthers, Chargers, Chiefs, Redskins, Ravens, Falcons, and 49ers are the teams I would call. I highly doubt that the Chiefs, Ravens, Falcons, and 49ers would be looking to pull off a deal, but they are lacking a solid QB for the 2008 season. And after all, Favre's "Freedom is not Free."

So, I'm giving Favre until Wednesday to let us know his full intentions. After that, I'm 100% committed to living with Aaron Rodgers as the QB of the Packers for the 2008 season. I also commit to never making a "Favre would have done this" or "Favre would have done that" comment during the 2008 NFL Season.

With or Without Brett, the G-Force needs to have one vision. This vision must be focused on winning football games with the players that have reported to camp. The G-Force must move on. The Packers Family Night is less than 2 weeks away. The G-Force must be united. Energy must spiritually be pointed in the same direction. Chico's "Support The Helmet" statement is profound at a time like now. At some point, we all knew Favre would retire. And at that point, the G-Force must remain stronger than ever. The relationship between the G-Force & the Green Bay Packers must continue to be fundamentally based around two words: Passion & Belief.

There is no Man on Earth that has supported Brett Favre more than I. And I'm not looking for a political debate, but maybe, just maybe, both in America & in Green Bay, it's time to "Vote For Change."

Freedom Is Not Free,

Talkin' S-Mac.


porterbela said...

Here is a link to "Support the Helmet" by G-Force.

And just so you know, the Bears started camp this afternoon. Grossman won the coin-toss with Orton. He gets to take snaps on the first day with the first team offense.

Sad thing is, is that the Bears 1st team offense is about as good as every other teams 2nd string offense...and that might be pushing the envelope.

Talkin' S-Mac said...

Well, today, my deadline has passed. As much as it would hurt to see Favre in another uniform, I must accept that it's time to move on and it appears as though the relationship cannot be reconciled. The Packers should look to deal Favre. The emotion needs to be taken out of it. It hurts to type. It hurts to think about. But, this is what it has come to. I would like a 1st round pick, but I'll settle for a 2 and a 4. Clearly, Brett & the Packers have their differences and it's in the best interest of the teams future to move on. Very unfortunate. But, a reality.

It's time for the Packers organization to unite for '08 and for the G-Force to rally for a year of unfamiliarity. The team needs our support in heavy fashion.

Let the Rodgers era commence...

patrad said...

scott you have my ultimate respect for your decision. really. honestly I was mostly of the same opinion and thought to myself, this is something I would never share on the blog. . . too much love for favre. but i'm really glad to see everyone is of the opinion that it's not about favre, it's about the pack. gforce09.

Stack said...

Interesting stuff lately...

Heard Steve Young on the Rome show today...Rome asked him about Favre and Young laid out the exact scenario that we've discussed. Paraphrasing from the best of my memory, Young was like "Look, if I was Brett Favre and I really wanted to play, I would go to TT and say 'Hey, I'm sorry for the mess I made, I'm sorry for the position that I put you in, but I really want to come back and play football.'" Young is really the only person outside of this circle who I have heard lay those ideas out in such parallel terms. For the record, both he and Rome doubted that #4 would do it.

Which begs the question, if Farve did come to TT with his hat in his hand, how could the Pack not take him back? But that time most likely has passed. If was just refreshing to hear Steve Young echo the approach that I think most rationally thinking Packer fans had espoused.

Secondly, I heard Marshall Faulk on NFL Network yesterday talk about the pressure that Favre felt last year, and I think he hinted at something very interesting and unique in perspective. He said that while the Packers may have more talent now than they have in the past, per Favre's once-puzzling comment, maybe they haven't needed Favre as much in the past as they do now.

Faulk continued to get at the fact that Packers, for most of Favre's reign, have been a powerful all-around football team. The dominant offensive line, the dominant running game, and the defense still managed to hold it's own in between the Super Bowl teams and the present. Faulk said "Brett Favre has never had to be the guy. And this past year, he needed to be the guy, and that was too much pressure for him."

I thought the point was profound. Faulk cited the posession game and ground game as allowing Favre to, at times, play out of control. Maybe we are more talented than ever, but how many times did you see an incredulous Favre at the podium after a victory last season, rubbing his wizened chin and saying "...but we're young."

Our defense was outstanding last year. They kept us in games. Brett had to keep himself from playing us out of games, and maybe that pressure got the best of him.

Talkin' S-Mac said...

PatRad, glad we share the same thoughts...

Stack, great reporting. Blog needs that buzz. Boy, do I disagree with Marshall Faulk. Favre CARRIED us from 2000-2004.

I pose the question:

How happy is Aaron Rodgers to have CC Sabathia in WI? I imagine that the Brewers, not the Packers, will be the top story when camp opens. Rodgers will still be on the front page, of course, but I doubt that he'll be the lead least until the 1st preseason game.

BlueGuy said...

Though I am a Giants fan I am pretty in-tuned to the Jets; they spent lots and lots of dough this off-season and out of nowhere a 4-12 team is considering themselves a "win-now" team. But with Clemens/Pennington as their quarterback I see the "now" part, but the "Win" part doesn't seem likely.

Going after Brett makes a lot of sense to them, even if they give up a #1 or a #2/#4 as you mentioned McK (They have an extra early 2009 pick from the Broncos from D. Robertson) - provided they can guarantee they have Brett for the full 2 years. They can release Pennington and save themselves ~$6MM.

Jets fans generally are over seeing Pennington throw like Johnny Damon, and Clemens hasn't shown anything to be excited about in his early career... but they definitely are surrounded with some talent and a nice O-Line (D'Brickeshaw, Faneca, Nick Mangold, etc).

In New York you can always count on teams wanting to capture those all important back pages of the Newspapers as motivation for their moves. Mets and Yanks will be relevant deep into September and the Giants are the SB Champs, so clearly getting Brett would be a nice step for the Jets to steal that backpage for a few days.

Brett to the Jets makes a lot of sense. But Camp is open and every day that goes by it starts to make less and less sense. A resolution has to happen soon, doesn't it?

Brennan said... reporting Favre going to stay with the Pack and report to camp. should be interesting.

Stack said...

I know, I see that report also, and you have to wonder whether he actually wants it or if it is simply the next move in the game that going on. I'm thinking the latter.

Favre should make a cameo in one of those Bud Light commercials...Brett shows up on Monday, TT looks at him, "Dude..."

Talkin' S-Mac said...


RACK HIM! Bring it, Joe! Love the take! Yes, the Jets are a logical choice. It makes sense for both parties.

And I think it may happen by the beginning of the Packers camp.

Brennan, thanks for buzzing in...his reporting to camp has caused an interesting wave of excitement...

Stack, I agree. I think he'll be dealt within a week.

porterbela said...

Went to the Cubs game at Wrigley today, hung out with Sarah Scavone and Lizzie. Ran into Pishko at the game. Had a blast. Drove out to Elgin, WI afterwards to participate in a Relay for Life. On the way back home we are at a stop sign about 10 miles south of Oconomowoc. My buddy Chip points at a church and says, Oh my god, look at that. I turn to read the sign outside of the church and this is what it reads in its exact words, letters, and numbers.

"Will 'HE' return? ESPN doesn't know. But the Bible says he will 4 sure."

porterbela said...

Oh yeah, I got to see jeff samardzija's debut as a major league pitcher. As a ND fan, I couldn't have been more stoked. And the stadium was electric when he notched his first career strike out.

chico said...

Today is Saturday, July 26th and I would like to officially say good bye! Good bye Brett Favre and good luck. It's fact all good things must come to an end and it holds true again.

The touch down pass to Bobby Brooks at Solider! The strike to Jennings in the San Diego game. The time he single handely beat Baltimore's defense. The Super Bowl victory. All these memories will bring tears to my eyes when I reflect with friends over 8-12 beers!

Tomorrow I move on as a man and as a fan. I'm expecting my first child and its all too fitting for me.

Tomorrow, I start talking: packer's d-line questions, 3rd cornerback, starting right gaurd, aaron rhouse starter?, Aaron Rodgers! Jennings...Nelson..Driver...Jones!

Training camp is here...Brewers are close! Kid on the way!! LIFE IS GOOD!


vargas said...

So favre openly admits to talking to the vikings? He didn't need to be enticed to go there so that must be where he wants to go? Fuck you brett... I, along with the majority of this blog have supported your ass through everything and then you do this type of shit? And then admit to it? Fuck you...go anywhere you want this will suck. You'll get your numbers towards the record but you won't win shit.. Sorry man but you are cursed this year from madden...but above all you now will have the lombardi/gforce curse.

I am 110% now behind a-rod..

side note to cub fan bloggers...Get out of the way of brooms...the brewcrew is doing some house cleaning this week!