Sunday, December 18
Ravens. Packers set to square off
By John Madden
There is something special about Brett Favre. It has been a tough year for him because he just doesn't have the players around him. They have had some injuries and they have lost so many things, the games, the season etc& It sure as heck isn't what he thought it was going to be.
I have done Packer games, I have watched practice and I have said okay I want to watch Brett Favre, I want to see if he's lost anything and believe me he hasn't! He can still throw with the same velocity, he still moves well, he still has a lot of enthusiasm for the game, he'll hand off on a reverse and he'll go out and lead and get a block and when he gets a touchdown he gets all excited. I know it's easier to say maybe it's the end for Favre but honestly I just don't see it.
I think that contrary to popular belief he will be back in Green Bay next year. He and I have talked about this the last four or five years and he has said there are two things that would make him seriously think about retiring. The first would be a serious injury and the second thing is if his team doesn't have a chance to win. Now that second one is kind of in play here. I think the Packers have to kind of commit to him that they are going to reload this deal because the shelf is pretty bare there. Now again some of it is because of injury and some of it is that they have lost players and just haven't replaced them.
For the Baltimore Ravens when I look at Jamal Lewis I see a guy that has just never gotten started this year. He had surgery in the off season and was rehabbing in jail so you said okay he is going to get off to a slow start which he did. So you just waited for him to come on and be the Lewis of old and he just never made it back to his old self. Then of course they start losing and getting behind in games and running doesn't mean anything and then it goes to the quarterback. All those things that go along with losing have affected the Baltimore Ravens as much as Jamal Lewis not playing well.
One of the questions that are going to have to be answered for the Ravens is Kyle Boller the long term answer? I am not sure if this is just something that he is going through and will come out on the other side and be the guy they thought they were getting or is this what the guy is. Sometimes if this is what the guy is you have to say that's it and you have to go in another direction.
Doing this game in Baltimore is going to be a little strange without Ray Lewis. He was always their "Yeah but". You would say offensively they don't have a great passing game but they do have a running game yeah but they have great defense and that great defense is Ray Lewis. He is making plays all over the place, he is the emotional leader. Then there is no Ray Lewis and it kind of looks like when there is no Ray Lewis there is no Ravens.
Super Bowl-winning coach John Madden is an analyst for ABC's Monday Night Football.