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Favre, NFL fans biggest losers in trade with Jets

August 11, 2008

by Stephen Wiblemo

It’s over! . . . Right? . . . I think . . . Well, maybe not . . . We’ll see.

The latest chapter in the Brett Favre saga has ended as he was traded to the New York Jets late Wednesday, early Thursday morning.

Trading Favre seemed like an unavoidable move the Packers were going to have to make eventually if they wanted some piece and quiet. But, moving him to the Jets was a bit of a surprise to me.

Now that the trade is over with, and a new chapter in Favre’s story of faded glory begins, I would like to take a look back at all of the groups involved to see who were the winners, and who were the losers.

Here are the winners:

Minnesota Vikings – Yes, of course the Vikings were winners in this circus.

Not only because Favre is out of their division for good, but also because Packer nation as a whole has to be reeling after such a devastating blow to their roster, and psyche.

I’m glad the Vikings get to play the Packers in the first Monday Night of the regular season, while the wounds are still fresh.

I’m going to call a 28-10 Viking’s win on that first night at Lambeau Field.

New York Jets – This was a great move by the Jets, in the short term.

Sure, Favre is 38 years old, practically a corpse by NFL standards, but anything is better than the 1-2 punch of Chad Pennington and Kellen Clemens that the Jets started camp with.

Hours after the announcement was made that Favre was traded to the Jets, NFL.com was selling Jets No. 4 jerseys like hotcakes.

Favre gives Jets fans a reason to want to watch a game, and all New York lost was a fourth-round draft pick in 2009.

I just hope they don’t have any expectations of Favre sticking around very long, or even of him making a difference in that squad.

Green Bay Packers – Yes, even the Packers benefited from this trade.

Despite the lousy compensation they got for their 16-year veteran, the Packers had to get rid of him.

Favre was turning into a nuisance like Terrell Owens was to the Eagles, something I’m sure John Madden lies awake thinking about every night.

Even though Packers brass would have preferred Favre to take the $20 million deal to stay retired, just to save face for the organization, they may be better of yet with the money and fourth-round pick.

So while those groups were all winners in my book, here are the losers:

Brett Favre – Oh yeah, he’s the biggest loser of them all.

Congratulations on ruining your reputation.

Even though I was never a big Favre fan, I had respect for what he had done with his organization and how he played the game.

But this changes everything.

Not just for me, but for Packer fans too.

They don’t know what think.

Images of Favre dropping back in the pocket and letting one fly for a 60-yard touchdown are the memories that made Favre a legend in Wisconsin.

Now those memories will just be bitter reminders to the fans that once loved him.

As Favre described it himself, its like a divorce.

Those memories that once instilled passion in Packer fans will only bring resentment now.

Fans don’t know what to think.

To use Favre’s divorce metaphor again, the fans are now like children who have to decide which parent they want to live with.

I’m sure most will choose the Packers and Favre’s legacy in Green Bay will die a little bit.

Favre should have stayed retired, and I think he’s going to realize that even sooner with the Jets.

The Jets were a dismal 4-12 last year.

Jets QBs were hit for 53 sacks in 2007 while Favre was taken down just 15 times.

My prediction is that he’s going to find out just how old 38 is in the NFL, really quick, and after a 0-5 start we may just see another tearful retirement.

If he doesn’t break his hip first.

Green Bay Packers – I know I already said the Packers were winners in this deal, but there is no way they didn’t come out of this deal without some scars.

Deep emotional scars.

Anything good for the Packers that came from this will be offset by the bad stuff.

The whole event will loom over Green Bay much like the Mike Vick debacle hung over Atlanta.

It wasn’t just the fact that Favre wanted to play somewhere else, it was how ugly the whole thing made both sides look.

The Packers didn’t want to drag their legendary QB through the mud, but they also didn’t want be hassled by him either.

In the end, they all have pie on their face.

NFL fans – That’s right. Perhaps the most tragically affected group of people in this whole mess will be you and I.

This was the end of the latest Favre chapter, but now another is already beginning – and I don’t care anymore.

There has been copious amounts of coverage during Favre’s tantrum, now its aftermath will draw even more attention.

Anybody who is sick of hearing about Favre will have to watch ESPN with the volume muted.

Because he is now in New York, where ESPN is located and is therefore the center of the sports universe, Favre updates will be available on the hour.

What did he have for lunch?

Did he get a new haircut?

Is he having healthy bowel movements?

These questions and more will be answered throughout 17 long weeks.

So get comfortable fans, and prepare yourself for a new season of the NFL – National Favre League.

More power Smithy!

I know I’ve wasted enough of your time with my Favre rants, and if you’ve made it this far you should be commended.

But, I had to mention a point I made in my last column that was reinforced by the Twins’ first two games against Seattle last week.

In my last column I said the Twins needed to find some bullpen pitching because Matt Guerrier and the rest of our pen wasn’t good enough.

Well, the worst team in the major leagues proved it on Monday when they scored 10 runs in one inning against the Twins, and then on Tuesday when they came back and beat us late in the game.

All of our bullpen pitchers failed to smother the Mariners’ rallies.

On the slim chance that Bill Smith is reading this column, I want to say this: Please Bill, we need more power!

There were a couple good things, including Denard Span continuing to stay hot.

Also, I was glad to see Gardenhire let Joe Nathan pitch more than one inning when he brought him in the eighth inning of the second loss to Seattle.

Nathan couldn’t stop them either, but at least Gardenhire has become open to the idea of using Nathan in more than just the ninth inning.