With Minnesota Vikings players scheduled to report to training camp in less than a week, Brett Favre remains anguished about whether he should come out of retirement and join the team. That decision, according to sources, has become more difficult in recent days because of the efforts of Vikings players including Adrian Peterson, Jared Allen and Steve Hutchinson, all of whom have now begun calling and texting Favre in an attempt to convince him to become Minnesota's starting quarterback.
"If it weren't for the involvement of the Vikings players directly telling Brett they want him on their team, I think he might have already decided against playing again,'' a source said.
Over the last three months, Favre himself has rarely gone on the record. In fact, most "updates" have merely cited unnamed sources. But the one time Favre spoke publicly was July 16, when he himself imposed a deadline on making a decision.
The quarterback told The Associated Press that he'll give the Vikings an answer on whether he'll play by the July 30 start of training camp. Favre has been working out with the Oak Grove High School football team three days a week all summer, but added a Sunday workout this week.
"There's two weeks left and I'm doing everything I can," Favre said. "I was down here Sunday morning working out. I'm trying to get everything to where I feel 100 percent when I go in. I can't go in any less. When you're 39 years old, it's hard enough. But it's getting there."
Favre said if the arm strength wasn't there, he wouldn't be making a bid to return for his 19th season in the league.
"I don't think Minnesota would even consider it if I didn't have it," Favre said. "Second of all, I wouldn't even think about it if I didn't have it. Now, having it here and having in on the field on Sundays is two different things, I know that for a fact. I know what it takes to play on Sunday and I still believe I have that."
Favre said his hesitation is more about what those watching him practice might not see. He used a golfing analogy to explain his situation. What if, he asked, Tiger Woods came back and found he didn't have the same game?
"He goes out and hits a 2 iron and he thinks it will go the normal distance it has all his life, then all of a sudden it's 13 yards short, and he says, 'I don't know why that is because everything felt perfect,' so that's what I have to get through," Favre said.
"If you're throwing and it's a little off and you have a little pain, it's a little bit understandable. If there's no pain and there's no excuse, that's where you've got a problem. So I want to go out and have one of those days throwing and then have another where all of those throws you make, every warmup throw you make or just in general, feels perfect."
If you read Favre's quotes from last week, didn't you get the indication that he was already wrestling with the decision, maybe even conveying some anguish? I mean, this is it. The only thing Favre has ever known for the past nineteen years is hanging in the balance. And one of his biggest concerns last Thursday was that there was only "two weeks left". So doesn't it stand to reason that he may be even more anxious a week closer to July 30th?
So, again, I don't understand how it's news that Favre is displaying "anguish" over the biggest decision of his illustrious NFL career. He said he would give the Vikings an answer next Thursday. So unless he shocks us all and gives a definitive answer prior to then, anything that happens between now and the 30th is pretty much non-newsworthy.