We know that in some circles this will be viewed as blasphemy. But it’s time. He’s too banged up, and he’s too distracted. Most importantly, he’s just not getting it done.
The Vikings need to find a way to get Brett Favre off the field.
Two years ago, Tarvaris Jackson entered the season as the starting quarterback in Minnesota. After two losses — by five to the Packers in their first post-Favre game and three to the Colts — Jackson unceremoniously was benched, in favor of Gus Frerotte.
Jackson’s stats weren’t bad. He had completed 30 of 59 passes for 308 yards, with one touchdown and one interception. He also ran for 65 yards against the Packers.
This year, Favre has five touchdown passes and seven interceptions through four games. His passer rating of 67.0 is lower than any full-season rating of his 20-year career.
More importantly, he’s banged up and, in crunch time of last night’s loss to the Jets, grossly inaccurate. It seems as if he’s playing only to show that he can keep playing. With 11 games to go until he accomplishes the unprecedented feat of 300 straight starts and with 12 games to go in the season, we can’t imagine Favre stepping aside voluntarily.
It’s highly unlikely if not impossible that the Vikings would bench him. But they need to find a way to give T-Jack a chance. The season can still be saved. The defensive is still potent. Adrian Peterson is still Adrian Peterson.
In 1998, when Randy Moss was a rookie, it generally was believed that any quarterback with the arm to throw a deep ball could be a star with Moss running under the rainbow passes and somehow coming up with the catch. So why not Jackson now? Percy Harvin already has become a faster, more explosive version of Wes Welker with Moss clearing out the underneath areas. Given Moss and Harvin, the Vikings simply don’t need Favre as much as they thought they did.
Then there’s the fact that Jackson was Brad Childress’ hand-picked quarterback of the future back in 2006. Childress still believes that Jackson could be that guy, even if the future is taking much longer to unfold than previously believed.
If it happens, it won’t be a benching. As Jason Whitlock of FOXSports.com suggested a few weeks back, Favre’s cocktail of injuries could result in placement on injured reserve. And as the off-field issues escalate, landing on IR could be a lot more palatable than taking a suspension.
Either way, the Vikings need to seriously consider giving the keys to Tarvaris Jackson. Given that he performed extremely well at times without guys like Harvin and Moss running routes, Jackson could be the slap in the ass that the Vikings desperately need, right now.