Skip to content

10 questions that need to be answered regarding Favre and the Vikings

Vikings coach Brad Childress and quarterback Brett Favre will meet the media on Wednesday.  They’ll likely be asked a question or two, and they’ll likely offer up at least a semi-plausible answer to each one.

Here are 10 of the questions that we think need to be asked, regardless of whether all we get is a semi-plausible answer, or worse.

1.  When will Favre take the field for the first time?

Few expected Favre to show up in time to take the trip to San Francisco for a Sunday night preseason game against the 49ers. 

Will he travel with the team to California? 

Will he take a few snaps against a 49ers team that probably would like to snap that bum ankle in order to improve its chances of qualifying for — and advancing in — the 2010 postseason?

2.  Will Favre’s contract be adjusted?

A member of the media has reminded us of this quote from Gordon Gekko:  “It’s all about bucks, kid.  The rest is conversation.” 

At this point, it’s widely believed that the Vikings will give Favre a hefty raise.  It’s also believed that Favre will “aw, shucks” his way through a monologue regarding how it’s not about the money.

If that’s the case, someone should ask him to declare that he’ll take nothing more than the $13 million he already is due to earn.

3.  Are we really supposed to believe that a supposedly impromptu visit from three teammates prompted Favre to make up his mind on the spot?

The actual answer to this one is meaningless.  It’ll just be interesting to see Childress and/or Favre try to offer an explanation that passes the smell test.

4.  What did Dr. Andrews say last week about the ankle?

Favre’s ankle supposedly wasn’t recovering quickly enough.  Last week, he visited with Dr. James Andrews.  In the aftermath of the visit, no details have emerged regarding the condition of the joint.  

So what did Andrews say to Favre about the ankle?  Is it  all of a sudden at 100 percent?  Is it less than 100 percent?  Will it improve or has it reached its ceiling?

5.  What other injuries does Favre currently claim to have?

Last year, Favre talked openly (and repeatedly) about a laundry list of ailments and maladies.  The exercise eventually forced the NFL to fine the Jets for failing to report the partially torn biceps tendon that he suffered during the 2008 season.

And it all became so ridiculous that we eventually added extra body parts (including “taint”) to the list of Favre’s supposedly injuries, along with a trio of illnesses — polio, swine flu, and lupus.

Beyond the ankle, he’ll surely point to some other injured area, if for no reason other than to have a built-in excuse in the event he throws five interceptions against the Saints on September 9.

6.  Is the double standard that applies to Favre hurting the team?

Jimmy Johnson of FOX had some pointed remarks regarding the Vikings’ approach to Favre during Wednesday’s edition of The Dan Patrick Show.  (More on that later.)  While we don’t expect Childress or Favre to say anything insightful or, you know, truthful on that point, it’s a fair question that needs to be posed to anyone and everyone in the organization.

The Vikings have been bending over backwards for Brett, and it possibly has created a sense in the locker room that other players deserve similar consideration.  Some think that receiver Sidney Rice has been milking a hip injury; others think that receiver Percy Harvin made the very most out of his most recent bout with migraines.  And don’t forget about running back Adrian Peterson’s bizarre decision to skip a mandatory minicamp so that he could attend a parade in his hometown.  Could the treatment of Favre be emboldening them?  

The 2009 Vikings by all appearances sold their souls for the possibility of getting back to the Super Bowl, and they seem to be willing to do it again, even as they deal with the possible aftermath of the first season with Favre in the fold. 

7.  Will the Vikings keep Sage Rosenfels?

It’s an issue that we’ve addressed in today’s edition of PFT Daily, which will be posted soon.  (We suspect that you’re holding your breath, and possibly other bodily functions.)

Though we doubt that Childress will be providing a straight answer to the question, it remains a highly relevant question to the make up of the 2010 edition of the team.

8.  Will the Vikings be as good in 2010 with Favre as they were in 2009?

This is a question that no one will be able to answer until the regular season begins to unfold.  But it likely will be very difficult for the Vikings to match or improve on their 12-4 mark from a season ago.

For starters, they’ll play the teams of the NFC East this year, not the NFC West.  Also, the Vikings have to face every team from a top-heavy AFC East, including trips to Foxborough and the new Meadowlands Stadium.

The team’s 13 opponents (they play three teams twice, obviously) will have had an entire offseason to study the film from Favre’s first year in purple for any and all tendencies and tells.  We also have a feeling that every defensive coordinator will try to replicate the “remember me” shots the Saints applied to No. 4 in the NFC title game — and that the Saints likely will try to reprise on September 9.

While much of the roster has remained in place, the departure of underrated third-down back Chester Taylor and primary offensive line backup Artis Hicks could present real challenges for an attack that produced career-high statistics for Favre.  Meanwhile, tailback Adrian Peterson will continue to be a pin cushion for pulling and punching and poking and prodding every time he tries to put the football under wraps. 

On defense, everyone is a year older — and the secondary remains the biggest weakness on either side of the ball.  With cornerback Cedric Griffin still recovering from a torn ACL suffered on the overtime kickoff of the NFC title game and linebacker E.J. Henderson still working his way back from a gruesomely broken leg, it remains to be seen whether the Vikings’ defense continues to be among the better units in the league.

9.  Can Childress and Favre get along?

Last year, Childress himself drove Favre from the airport to the team facility.  This year, Childress was nowhere to be seen.

We’ve heard persistent rumors that the players in Minnesota generally don’t like or respect Childress.  Though no good head coach openly aspires to be liked by his players, a lack of respect could kill a team’s chances — especially if it starts with the quarterback whose ring, feet, and ass everyone kisses.

Last year’s twelve-men-in-the-huddle routine probably didn’t help matters.

After a home field advantage-killing loss to the Panthers on Sunday Night Football, troubling reports emerged regarding Chilly’s effort to bench Favre, regarding Favre’s resistance, and regarding Chilly’s angry reaction to news that Favre had blabbed out it.  Thereafter, ESPN’s Ed Werder reported based on unnamed sources (i.e., Favre) that Childress “seldom” discussed the game plan with his quarterback, and that Childress “bristles” when Favre changes the play at the line of scrimmage.

For the Vikings to reach their full potential in 2010, whatever it may be, Favre and Childress need to be on the same page.  Mo
re importantly, Favre needs
to ensure that his teammates buy in to Childress’ schemes and tactics and decisions, even when Favre otherwise may be inclined to disagree.

10.  How will the Vikings fare this year?

In the PFT Season Preview magazine, which was written under the assumption that Favre will be back, I picked the Vikings to win the NFC North, but not to make it to Dallas for Super Bowl XLV.  The rest of the crew pegged the Packers as division champs, with Rosenthal and MDS predicting a wild-card berth for Minnesota.  (Silva has them not getting in at all.) 

Whether the Vikings can win the division again or not, Favre probably will get the team back into the postseason tournament.  But with the Cowboys looking to avenge last year’s 34-3 drubbing in the Metrodome and with the widely-overlooked Saints as potent as they were in 2009 and with a surprise team or two likely to emerge in the NFC, it will be even harder in 2010 for Favre to cap his career in the manner that he clearly covets — by winning another Super Bowl and walking away as the credits start to roll.

UPDATE:  Someone also needs to ask Favre about Jenn Sterger.  And then run.

Permalink 98 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Minnesota Vikings, Rumor Mill, Sprint Football Live - Rumors, Top Stories

Giants likely without two starting offensive linemen Sunday

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 20:   Justin Pugh #67 of the New York Giants in action against the Atlanta Falcons during their game at MetLife Stadium on September 20, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Giants started the week without left guard Justin Pugh and center Weston Richburg and it looks like they’ll remain without them through Sunday.

Pugh has been ruled out because of a concussion and will miss a second straight game as a result. Pugh was scratched in Week 10 against the Patriots and was placed in the league’s concussion protocol after continuing to experience symptoms of the brain injury through the team’s bye week.

Richburg sprained his ankle in that loss to New England and has been listed as doubtful to play against the Redskins after missing practice this week. John Jerry started in place of Pugh in Week 10 and Dallas Reynolds would be the replacement for Richburg.

Tight end Larry Donnell was ruled out with the neck injury that’s left him out of the last two games and linebacker Mark Herzlich is out with a quad injury. Cornerback Prince Amukamara is expected back from a pectoral injury for a game that could put the Giants in firm control of the NFC East with a win.

Permalink 1 Comment Feed for comments Back to top

Devonta Freeman one of three Falcons ruled out

ATLANTA, GA - NOVEMBER 22:  Devonta Freeman #24 of the Atlanta Falcons runs the ball during the first half against the Indianapolis Colts at the Georgia Dome on November 22, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Falcons did the expected on Friday afternoon and ruled running back Devonta Freeman out for Sunday’s game against the Vikings.

Freeman has been out of practice all week with a concussion, making it no surprise that Tevin Coleman will get the start at running back at the Georgia Dome in a meeting between two teams vying for a playoff spot in the NFC. It will be Coleman’s third start of the year and first since his rib injury in Week Two opened the door for Freeman with the first team.

Freeman isn’t the only player that Atlanta ruled out on Friday. Wide receiver Leonard Hankerson won’t play due to a hamstring injury. Hankerson returned to the lineup last week after missing two other games for the same reason.

Kicker Matt Bryant rounds out the trio of players listed as out. Bryant hurt his quad in practice on Wednesday, forcing the team to sign the well-traveled Shayne Graham to the roster. Graham will play for his 10th NFL team when he takes the field with the Falcons on Sunday.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Nick Mangold probable, but Darrelle Revis won’t play

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 12:  IK Enemkpali #75 of the Buffalo Bills and Nick Mangold #74 of the New York Jets shake hands during the coin toss prior to the game at MetLife Stadium on November 12, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) Getty Images

The writing on the wall all week has been that Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis would miss Sunday’s game against the Dolphins after suffering a concussion against the Texans in Week 11.

Any lingering doubt was snuffed out on Friday afternoon when coach Todd Bowles officially ruled Revis out for the game. Revis hasn’t practiced all week, so he’ll remain questionable for Week 13 until there’s some progress on his path through the concussion protocol.

There is better news elsewhere on the injury front. Center Nick Mangold practiced for the second straight day on Friday and has been listed as probable after needing stitches to repair a cut on his right hand last weekend. The Jets struggled to move the ball when Mangold missed a game earlier this season with a neck injury and the same happened when he was hurt early in last week’s loss, which makes his presence a welcome one for the offense.

Defensive end Sheldon Richardson is also probable after missing last week with a hamstring injury. With Revis out of the picture, the defense could use a renewed pass rushing effort from Richardson and his mates on the defensive line.

Permalink 4 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Ron Rivera: If you’re talking about 16-0, you’re not focused on the details

on November 26, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. Getty Images

The Panthers improved to 11-0 in Dallas on Thursday afternoon and every game that ends without a loss increases the chatter about whether they can run the table in the regular season.

Coach Ron Rivera isn’t really into the topic at this point, however. Rivera fielded a variety of questions related to his team’s unblemished record on Friday, including queries about whether he’s planning to rest starters in the final weeks of the season and whether the Panthers could benefit from a loss before the postseason. Rivera made it clear that he’s thinking about next week and not five weeks from now.

“If you’re talking about 16-0 seasons, you’re not focusing on the details you need to pay attention to,” Rivera said, via Steve Reed of the Associated Press.

Rivera added that he thinks the team has yet to play their best for a complete game, which may not be the same opinion held by defensive tackle Dwan Edwards. Edwards said Friday that “it’s going to take us not playing our best for someone to beat us.”

The remaining schedule features games at the Saints, a home-and-home with the Falcons sandwiched around a road date with the Giants and a home finale against the Buccaneers. There’s certainly the possibility of a loss or two if the Panthers don’t play up to snuff, but the reasons to expect one are just as certainly dwindling as the Panthers continue to roll through the competition.

Permalink 17 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Jamie Collins returns to practice after missing three weeks

San Diego Chargers Vs. New England Patriots At Qualcomm Stadium Getty Images

Patriots linebacker Jamie Collins has missed the last three games, but returned to the practice field Friday after dealing with an undisclosed illness.

According to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald, Collins has been back at the stadium this week after getting treatment for what was described as “a contagious illness.” There’s been little word on what the illness is, other than it’s not MRSA.

Having missed so much practice time, it’s unlikely Collins would be ready to play Sunday night against the Broncos.

Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola was also on the field, practicing for the second straight day. He sprained his knee last week, but could be ready if he’s working back-to-back days.

Permalink 10 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Kyle Williams may be headed to IR, Mario Williams out this week

Johnny Manziel, Kyle Williams AP

The Bills are going to have to shuffle their defensive front, and it appears one key part won’t be coming back at all.

Via Mike Rodak of, Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams’ knee isn’t getting better, and coach Rex Ryan said he’s probably headed to injured reserve.

Williams was injured in Week Six, but Ryan said he hasn’t responded to treatment, making it likely he wouldn’t return this season. That’s a blow to their run defense, which hasn’t been the same without the veteran.

Defensive end Mario Williams is also going to be out this week against the Chiefs, after injuring his foot Monday against the Patriots. Williams has struggled this season, with just 3.0 sacks after hitting double digits the previous three seasons. Ryan said it didn’t appear that Mario Williams’ injury was season-ending.

There is good news for the Bills, as quarterback Tyrod Taylor is probable, after getting some time off this week to rest his shoulder.

Permalink 4 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Devonta Freeman absent from practice again

Devonta Freeman, Dontae Johnson AP

Devonta Freeman is not at Falcons practice again Friday, a sign that he won’t be cleared in time to play Sunday vs. the Vikings.

Freeman suffered a concussion early in last week’s loss to the Colts. Rookie Tevin Coleman would be the starter if Freeman can’t play Sunday.

The 6-4 Falcons have lost three straight and are trying to stay in the NFC wildcard race.

Freeman is fifth in the NFL with 764 rushing yards and leads all runners with 9 touchdowns.

Permalink 7 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Jerry Jones: Tony Romo won’t need surgery but is out for season

Tony Romo, Jerry Jones AP

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has confirmed what was widely expected: Tony Romo is out for the season.

Jones said this morning on 105.3 The Fan that Romo will not play again until 2016.

If there’s any good news from the Cowboys’ perspective, it’s that Romo has a hairline fracture in his clavicle and will not need surgery. It appears that Romo’s clavicle injury isn’t as severe this time around as the Week Three clavicle injury that forced him to miss seven games this season.

But that’s of small consolation. The Cowboys, who got off to a promising 2-0 start, saw their season derailed by Romo’s first injury, and saw any faint hope of a playoff run ended by Romo’s second injury.

Now the Cowboys just have to wait until next year. And Jones has to see if he can find a better backup quarterback than Matt Cassel, so that if Romo gets hurt again in 2016, it won’t mean the Cowboys’ season is over.

Permalink 70 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Black Friday PFT Live features Kuechly, Tate, Chris Johnson, Troy Brown

Luke Kuechly, Kurt Coleman, Jason Witten AP

It’s Black Friday, a term that originated within the retail industry as an expression of the stress and dread the workers experience on the biggest shopping day of the year. Thanks to a little Chamber of Commerce P.R. spit-and-polish, it’s now sold to the public as a good thing — the day on which businesses go from being in the red to being in the black.

Which overlooks the reality that any business that spends nearly 11 months of the year in the red isn’t going to stay in business much longer.

As the sports talk radio business goes, Black Friday is one of the best days of the year, with three high-profile NFL games to dissect and another 13 to go in a weekend with plenty of postseason implications. Starting at 12:00 p.m. ET, PFT Live on NBC Sports Radio will devote three hours to the NFL action that was and that soon will be, with visits from Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly, Lions receiver Golden Tate, Cardinals running back Chris Johnson, and former Patriots great Troy Brown.

So join us via Sirius 213, XM 202,, the easy-to-use NBC Sports Radio app, and any of the many terrestrial affiliates throughout the country.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Bengals activate Cedric Ogbuehi, place Darqueze Dennard on IR

Darqueze Dennard AP

The Bengals swapped one first-rounder’s roster spot for another Friday.

The team announced that cornerback Darqueze Dennard was placed on season-ending injured reserve, and that tackle Cedric Ogbuehi had been activated from the reserve/non-football injury list.

Dennard suffered a shoulder injury last Sunday against the Cardinals, and he’ll need surgery to repair the damage. Their 2014 first-round pick, Dennard was making his first career start, and leaves them thin in the secondary.

Ogbuehi, their 2015 first-rounder, started practicing earlier this month, as he recovers from the torn ACL late in his final college season.

Permalink 2 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Revis missing from practice again Friday

Darrelle Revis AP

The Jets took to the practice field without cornerback Darrelle Revis again Friday, a signal that Revis is unlikely to play Sunday vs. the Dolphins.

Revis suffered a concussion during last week’s loss to the Texans.

The Jets have lost four of five to slip to 5-5.

Earlier this week, Jets coach Todd Bowles said it would be “a bonus” if the team had Revis available. His absence from Friday’s practice might confirm that bonus isn’t coming.

Permalink 6 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Jay Gruden: It’s a one-game season

LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 25: Head coach Jay Gruden of the Washington Redskins looks on prior to a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at FedExField on October 25, 2015 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images) Getty Images

At 4-6, the Redskins are on the outside looking in at the playoff race in the NFC and they know that there’s only one way to change that positioning.

They need to end a five-game losing streak to the Giants when they host their NFC East rivals on Sunday afternoon. Redskins players say that the team’s coaches have been drilling the importance of this week’s game during practice all week and coach Jay Gruden isn’t downplaying the significance in his public comments either.

“It’s a one-game season,” Gruden said, via “If we have any desire at all to play 17, 18 or 19 games we have to take care of business Sunday. That’s the most important thing. We’ve got to get their best effort physically and mentally. It’s got to be their best focus of the season, not far, not even close. I think the guys are revved up.”

It’s hard to argue with Gruden’s take. Dropping a second game to the Giants would leave the Redskins two games and a tiebreaker behind in a divisional race, leaving them in need of a lot of wins and a lot of luck to change the standings. Thanks to the Thanksgiving developments for the Cowboys and Eagles, a Giants win would also push Tom Coughlin’s team to the doorstep of a division title with five games left to play so you’d imagine that everyone will be revved up come kickoff.

Permalink 9 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Sean Taylor died eight years ago today

LANDOVER, MD - DECEMBER 02:  Fans of the Washington Redskins hold up signs honoring the late Sean Taylor prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills on December 2, 2007 at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) Getty Images

Eight years ago today, Washington safety Sean Taylor died at the age of 24. He had been shot by intruders into his Miami home, where Taylor and his girlfriend and young daughter were sleeping.

Earlier this year, the fifth and final defendant accepted an 18-year prison term for his role in the crime. The shooter received a 60-year sentence, and the mastermind of the burglary that ended in Taylor’s death was sentenced to life behind bars.

The anniversary comes two days before Giants safety Landon Collins plays his first game on Taylor’s home field in Maryland.

“When I go out there and do warm-ups and stuff, I just want to look at the memory of him and his name up there,” Collins said, via Newsday. “It’s going to be fantastic and it’s going to be a dream come true to be on the field he played on.”

Idolized by Collins, Taylor was beloved by teammates like Clinton Portis and Santana Moss. If Taylor had lived, he likely would still be playing — and he probably would have already cemented his status as a Hall of Famer.

Permalink 33 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Ravens activate Brent Urban from injured reserve

BALTIMORE, MD - MAY 17:  Defensive end Brent Urban #96 of the Baltimore Ravens participates in the Baltimore Ravens Rookie Minicamp on May 17, 2014 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Ravens officially brought running back Justin Forsett’s season to an end on Friday.

Forsett broke his arm when Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald slammed him to the turf during last Sunday’s Ravens victory and the Ravens have now formally added him to injured reserve. Forsett ends the year with 641 yards and two touchdowns on 151 carries and another 153 yards on 31 catches. He’s signed for the next two seasons with base salaries of $3 million.

Forsett’s roster spot will be filled by defensive end Brent Urban, who was placed on injured reserve with the designation to return at the start of the regular season. Urban, a fourth-round pick in 2014, tore his biceps during training camp.

Coach John Harbaugh said earlier this week that Urban would be activated, but that he wasn’t sure if the lineman would be in the lineup for Monday’s game against the Browns.

“He’s done a really good job,” Harbaugh said, via the Baltimore Sun. “He’s worked hard, he looks good. It’s going to be exciting to see him in real action at some point in time, and see how he does because he hasn’t played that much. But he’s practiced very well.”

Urban actually hasn’t played at all for the Ravens in the regular season. He missed all of 2014 with a knee injury so he’ll be making his NFL debut when he does get the nod from Harbaugh.

Permalink 7 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Matt Cassel knows it’s time for him to step up for Cowboys

Matt Cassel AP

The Cowboys haven’t won a game Tony Romo hasn’t started this season and Matt Cassel has a personal six-game losing streak that goes back two teams ago.

And yet, he remains confident.

The veteran quarterback might have to fill in for Romo the rest of the season after a left shoulder injury knocked him out, as the Cowboys await test results today.

I have a lot of confidence in myself,” Cassel said, via Charean Williams of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I have a lot of confidence in this team. It’s about getting back to work.”

Any time would be a good time to start. Dallas was 0-7 during Romo’s first injury absence, and Cassel hasn’t won a start since the 2014 season-opener for the Vikings. But the Cowboys acquired him in a trade with the Bills because he was a better option than Brandon Weeden, who was subsequently cut and claimed by the Texans.

“That’s part of what you embrace when you become a quarterback is you’ve got to step in, and obviously Tony’s been a leader here for 13 years of his career, and now it’s time,” Cassel said. “If it’s that situation, then I have to step up and try fulfill that role in some way. Obviously, you don’t replace a guy like Tony Romo, but at the same time, you’ve got to be you, and hopefully the guys rally around you, and you move forward.”

The Cowboys are 6-16 without Romo since he took over the starting job in 2006, but they’re looking for any positive they can find.

“Obviously, Matt’s got some experience in our offense now and did a nice job when he got back in,” offensive coordinator Scott Linehan said. Cassel did go 13-for-19 for 93 yards and a touchdown in the fourth quarter, but that was after the game was out of reach.

They’re also going to have to find a new backup, and may promote Kellen Moore from the practice squad.

Permalink 26 Comments Feed for comments Back to top