Ed Werder and Chris Mortensen of ESPN report that quarterback Brett Favre has instructed his agent to inform the New York Jets that he plans to retire.
Werder received an e-mail from Favre regarding his decision.
“[G.M.] Mike [Tannenbaum] and [owner] Woody [Johnson], as well as the entire organization, have been nothing short of outstanding,” Favre told Werder via e-mail.  “My teammates[,] Thomas [Jones] and Kerry [Rhodes] included, were a pleasure to play with.  [Coach] Eric [Mangini] could not have been any better.  I enjoyed playing for him.  My time with the Jets was short, but I’m honored to be given that chance.”
Favre undoubtedly mentioned Jones and Rhodes because both of them were critical of him in the wake of a failed 2008 season, during which Favre’s performances disintegrated down the stretch.  Jones even suggested that Favre should have been benched.
So what does this all mean? 
The easy answer is to assume that Favre really means it this time.  But he really seemed to mean it last time, and in the end he didn’t.
There’s evidence to support the notion that he might not mean it this time, either. 
Indeed, Mort and Werder report that, per an unnamed source, agent Bus Cook “informally discussed” with the Jets the possibility of granting Favre an outright release. 
But the Jets said no.
Given the Jets’ refusal to do so, it’s surprising that Favre has retired.  If he had dragged his feet until 3:59 p.m. EST on February 26, the Jets might have had no option but to cut him in order to comply with the 2009 salary cap.
In the end, though, it might have been ego and pride that prompted Favre to avoid a news cycle featuring the headline “Jets Cut Brett,” even if it would have given him what he tried to get from the Packers last summer — a free and clear release.
We’re still not sure this one is over.  Last year, when Favre unretired, the Packers were able to absorb his $12 million cap number while they figured out what to do with him.  This year, the Jets likely wouldn’t be able to account for an unretirement by Favre without scrambling to create the cap space.
Our guess?  If Favre gets the itch to play again in June, he’ll instruct Cook to call the Jets and inform them that Favre still wants to play.  And then the Jets will have to decide whether to release him from the reserve-retired list, to welcome him (and his $13 million salary) back, or to create enough cap space to carry him while they try to trade him.
In our view, ego and pride could keep Favre from reprising his routine from the summer of 2008.  Then again, if he really wants to play and if the Vikings haven’t done much if anything to address their problems at the quarterback position, Favre might be willing to swallow his pride and play chicken with a team that would be facing a significant salary-cap conundrum if he were to perform his second annual cicada-style emergence from ranks of the former NFL players.
Finally, we don’t rule out the possibility of Favre and/or Cook delaying the process of formally notifying the team of Favre’s intention to retire.  Based on the report of an intended retirement, the Jets likely won’t take steps to clear enough cap room to accommodate Favre’s $13 million salary between now and February 26.  So if the letter declaring an intent to retire doesn’t arrive before February 26, the Jets could be forced at 3:30 p.m. EST on February 26 to cut the cord, making Favre a free agent.
If it happens that way, the headlines wouldn’t declare “Jets Cut Brett,” because Brett has already made it known to the media that he’s going to retire.  Among the least-common-denominator crowd, the act of releasing Favre 15 days from now would likely be viewed as merely a paperwork thing.


    Congratulations on a great career.
    What in the world are Madden and Kornheiser going to talk about now?

  2. “Favre felt Thompson had taken Favre’s team from him, believed it had become personal, described the Packers as dishonest and concluded that the most accomplished quarterback in history had been exiled to the Jets precisely because it was something of a football purgatory, where no championships had been won in the four decades since Joe Namath.
    “They sent me to New York because they didn’t play the Jets, they were 4-12, so they didn’t have to play me, they knew we had very little chance of making the playoffs and they knew it was not likely that we’d have a better year than they did,” Favre told Werder. “I was aware of all of that and more than up to the challenge because they felt they were shipping me off to Siberia and they’d never hear from me again. So was I coming back to play because I loved the game or to prove them wrong? Probably a little bit of both.”
    What is with this guy? He was my favorite player on the Pack for all these years, but now he’s coming out and saying this stuff….
    Note to Brett: This is not your team. It’s Green Bay’s team and nobody is bigger than it. Thompson built a talented team around you and you spout off like this. Go home and stay there.

  3. …in other sports new A-rod is on steroids and NOTHING else is happening.
    Warning to everybody. Steer clear of all espn affiliated sports channels for the next 2-47 weeks if you wish to avoid news on Favre and A-rod.

  4. It means, he is retiring today.
    Let’s see if he actually files the paperwork.
    If not, tune back in about a month…

  5. is there anyone who can tell me who won the derrick thomas award or the darrell green award?

  6. Florio you are starting to become terrible now. Espn broke this story about a half an hour before you posted anything. Also why haven’t you been showing the cuts of late. Green and Greenwood were cut from the Texans. It seems your more worried on your awful predictions than the actual facts.

  7. I really hope it isn’t that simple. What am I going to do during the 2009 off season if i’m not wondering if he’ll come back or not.

  8. Before the slander begins I want to send him out on a positive note, Thanks for the memories Brett in GB and NY.

  9. Now all the jets fans who wanted him out can enjoy a 4-12 or 5-11 season next year. Be careful what you wish for.

  10. It’s too bad he didn’t just retire a Packer. Thanks for the memories Brett. It’s been great watching you play for years, now please, stay retired with dignity.

  11. It mean he “plans” to retire, not that he “is” going to retire. He’s also setting himself up to play with the Vikings. Thats what it means…
    Well, the Jets can stop complaining now, other then the fact that the year didn’t go as expected.

  12. Not a Damm THING Bretteney is just like a corrupt politician 1st he floats Balloons through secondaries maybe he’ll eventually come out publically and say it.But then it will just be a lie.Why doesn’t he just become governor of Illinois

  13. Fastforward to June 2009:
    Headline: Favre tells Jets he is interested in playing again, team held hostage.

  14. “What in the world are Madden and Kornheiser going to talk about now?”
    Screw that…..what is Florio gonna do now? His website hits will dramatically reduce now. You can bet your ass though that Florio will continue the “Favre is coming back” rumors throughout the entire offseason. Favre equals ratings. Love him or hate him (which just means jealous of him) everybody is fascinated by the man. Moreso than anyone in football.
    We should start a new poll. Who will be Florio’s new bitch? You need to pick someone that he really has a homoerotic fascination with, and he must be extremely successful and popular. My first guess is Ben Rothlesberger, but I’m sure he’ll find another one.

  15. I have an idea: Do not give Brett Favre any more media time until he reports to training camp. I am appreciative of this guy’s career, but this is getting tired. he has become an okay quarterback who ocassionally makes some great plays and puts together some good games. Shall we list the number of NFL quarterbacks who fit that bill these days?

  16. Awesome. Now everytime I come on this site for the next 6 months, i’ll have to read about whether Captain INT is coming back or not…yippie!

  17. I’m just glad he revealed himself to be the douche that he is prior to fake hanging up the cleats. Good Riddance!!!

  18. Congratulations Brett! You’ve completely tanked your reputation in Wisconsin, and the NYC media made you a laughingstock. As a die hard Packer fan I honestly hope 2 things happen: 1) You become a Viking per your wishes so you can set their franchise back 3 years, and 2) that you never set foot in the state of Wisconsin again.
    Who do you think cares more about your traitorous behavior? Ted Thompson or the legions of Packer fans? The fact that you purposefully want to play for our biggest rival (and the fact that you tried to sabotage us by giving away our play book) won’t be forgotten. As a devout Packers fan and a formerly passionate Brett Favre fan, I sincerely hope that I someday have the chance to boo you.

  19. I fell for this last year. As soon as a big name QB goes down early he’ll get some phone calls. Or in late June when he still wants to play for the Vikings he’ll start making noise… Florio may be right on his prediction. If he wears purple, he’ll forever be tarnished to Packer fans.

  20. the comments on here are funny, because there are a few guys giving thanks to farve and telling him to retire with dignity.
    he has no dignity left. He’s been playing this game for years, and I’m not talking about football. you can’t tell me if he saw a window to play for the vikes, that he wouldn’t take it in a heartbeat. Plus, how could he just let all of that camera time go to waste? “One more chance in the spotlight” he says, “just one more year, I promise”.I don’t dislike Brett Favre the player, but as a person… it’s like watching a train wreck.

  21. So if the Jets release Favre (as opposed to him retiring), do the Packers still owe New York a 7th round pick next year? If he retires, then un-retires and gets released, what then regarding the draft pick?

  22. Understatement of the year, florio…
    “We’re not sure this is over yet”…
    Brettany and she-ho resurface in minnehaha!!!!!!

  23. This crap is starting to get worse than hearing about how crazy the Cowboys are. At least that is entertaining. All the stories about Favre is just starting to get annoying.

  24. At least he is doing this right before Baseball season.
    we can at least wach Baseball coverage for a while so
    we wont have to hear this crap everyday.
    No more football reading or watching for me for a while.
    See ya!!!!

  25. I’ll believe it when he files paperwork, it’s accepted, and any impact to the Jets’ salary cap is realized. Do you know if he managed to squeeze out a few crocodile tears while he was typing that email out?

  26. The idea of him playing for the Vikings to Packers fans I assume is like Darrel Green wanting to play for the Cowboys. It just makes me shudder to think of him in that nasty looking uniform.

  27. I think the reason Brett chose to “retire” now is spelled out in this mornings ‘one-liners’. Apparently the Jets got under the cap by cutting Barrett ($5M) leaving Brett’s $15 (or whatever) safely within the league limit. Basically this just took the one bargaining chip Brett had off the table.
    Brett, just stay retired with dignity so all involved can just move on. I mean really, what do you want to do, become a traveling sideshow? Just hang’em up. You’ve had a GREAT run, so don’t tarnish it any further.

  28. nnmsgst
    You’re an idiot. Favre didn’t give anybody the Packer playbook, he merely spoke to an opposing GM about team tendencies, something any other GM besides Millen already would know from playing that team twice per year, in a conversation filled more with talk of hunting and fishing.

  29. Glad I went to that epic Thursday game against the Jets this year. Even though the Patriots lost, it was still an incredible game and I am glad I got to see this legendary player at least once in my life…

  30. Smart move by Favre.
    Since he clearly doesn’t want to be a Jet next year, now he can allow the Jets to move on and rebuild in ’09 without him, all the while negotiating behind the scenes with any team stupid enough to bring him in and sabotage their season…hello, Minnesota.

  31. “So if the letter declaring an intent to retire doesn’t arrive before February 26, the Jets could be forced at 3:30 p.m. EST on February 26 to cut the cord, making Favre a free agent.
    If it happens that way, the headlines wouldn’t declare “Jets Cut Brett,””
    10 bucks says that is your headline.

  32. brett, this is coming from a lifelong packer fan that has supported you your whole career. please. please. please stay retired. i cried when we beet the patriots in the superbowl with complete happiness as a 12 year old kid. i cried the first time you retired because i knew i would miss what you brought to the game for us packer fans. in my mind(and 97% of all other true packers fans minds), you have always been the hero. i don’t want to continue to look at you as the villian. please bow out gracefully and go home and enjoy your family. if you continue with this charrade, you are not going to be welcomed back to green bay for a long time. you might even have a hard time finding people that actually want to be at your hall of fame induction when this continues. relax about the records. they are all yours. peyton isn’t going to be able to break them. neither is brady. stop adding to your interception total and allow us to remember you in the mostly positive memories that we have.

  33. It’s hard to believe that Favre would announce his retirement (again) after a startlingly bad finish to a decent season…unless he’s really done. Maybe he had to revert to the form that had people thinking he was done a few years ago in order to reinforce the fact that, well, he just can’t play like he used to?
    He had a second wind in his career. That second wind is gone. Time to hang ’em up before he embarrasses himself further.
    (I normally wouldn’t believe Favre about this, but he sure played like crap at the end of last season. He may get the itch once more, but if he scratches it, he’ll end up sucking again.)

  34. Anyone who saw those last few Jets games at all knows he will stay retired. In fact, those games are why he’s hanging it up for good.
    Did anyone honestly think that Farve would not retired after Mangini was fired?

  35. Brett will be back as soon as he gets his fill of riding his John Deere and his nagging wife.

  36. “if he really wants to play and if the Vikings haven’t done much if anything to address their problems at the quarterback position”
    If the Vikings have not done anything to solve their quarterback problems by June, Childress should be fired as a matter of principle.
    I cannot believe the exact same s*&t is happening in the comments this year like nothing happened.
    Some cudos, some defensive, some laughing, jeez…12 frickin’ monts have passed. And did the Jets not state last week or so that they would have to give up the picks if he went to the NFC North?? Are the conditions clear or not? If they release him, is he really free? (I can’t why not, but…)
    Add my vote to the “no dignity left” crowd. See you Brett, don’t come back. I would love to watch him play more (the player, not the diva), but it’s time to poop or get out.
    Also, and sorry for dragging on, but did he not file his papers last year? Does that really make a difference?

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