This deal is a downer for Favre
The deal sending Brett Favre to the Jets isn't a good one for the legendary quarterback, John Clayton writes.
After flexing his muscles and testing the will of the Green Bay Packers' organization, Favre agreed to a trade with the Jets despite having hoped to stay with the Packers or go to the Vikings or Bucs. Throughout most of his career, Favre lived the life of a player who thought of going to Super Bowls. By going to the Jets, he can think only of wild-card playoff berths.
Favre alone isn't going to cut the gap between the Jets and the New England Patriots. The Patriots have Tom Brady, Randy Moss, Bill Belichick, a great team and the easiest schedule in the league. Favre has only the satisfaction that he's out of Green Bay.
Given that reality, this trade is a thumbs down for the surefire Hall of Fame quarterback.
Jets fans have to be excited because they no longer have to worry about Chad Pennington's weak arm or the inconsistencies of the developing Kellen Clemens. Favre brings to New York the potential of a 4,000-yard season as a passer who can hit better than 63 percent of his throws.
But if his heart wasn't into competing against Aaron Rodgers for the starting job in Green Bay, how is Favre going to be at playing second fiddle to Brady in the AFC East? Mike McCarthy had it right Tuesday. He said Favre was in a tough place.
To come out of retirement and have only hopes of a wild-card berth has to be disappointing to Favre. True, he tested the will of the Green Bay Packers' organization and lost. He thought he was big enough to get his release. He wasn't. He thought he could force a trade to the Vikings. He couldn't.
Tired and mentally exhausted from his Green Bay visit, he agreed to listen to going to Tampa Bay or the Jets. He preferred the Vikings. The Packers said no and traded him out of the conference.
The Packers beat down their icon. They've moved on to Rodgers. Favre agreed to the trade only because he knew it was time to get in camp and train for the regular season.
Going to the Jets is certainly a downer for him.
John Clayton, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame writers' wing, is a senior writer for ESPN.com.
MORE NFL HEADLINES
- Jerry backs Romo: We have to 'take risks'
- Sources: Flacco will not undergo MRI on knee
- 49ers' fans plan billboard to mock Seattle
- Official: Hit on Bengals punter was illegal
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
BRETT FAVRE SAGA: OVER
After pushing and pushing to keep playing either in Green Bay or elsewhere, Brett Favre's storied career will continue in 2008. The unretired quarterback has been traded by the Packers to the Jets.
NFC North blog | AFC East blog
News• Favre on offseason saga: 'I knew I wanted to play'
• Favre unlikely to play in Jets' preseason finale
• Report: Pack's Favre deal included souvenirs, blog
• On Day 5 with Jets, Favre says arm feels 'fatigued'
• Favre finally arrives in New York, meets mayor
• Rodgers: 'Still following Brett's legacy'
• Jets introduce Favre in Cleveland
• Favre era ends in Green Bay with trade to Jets
• Favre leaves Green Bay, destination unknown
• Favre: 'This probably isn't going to work'
• Favre flying under radar in Green Bay
• Favre: Reinstatement done, Green Bay flight set
• Favre mulling offer; NFL ruling put off again
• Favre actively weighing Packers' offer
• Report: Packers mull dealing Favre in division
• Team president meeting with Favre, agent
• Source: Favre files for reinstatement
• Rodgers takes over as starting QB
• Favre signs reinstatement letter, waits to send
• Favre won't report to Packers camp Sunday
• Sources: Favre, Packers talk trade destinations
• Favre support muted at shareholders meeting
• Report: Favre doesn't have team-issued phone
• Report: NFL security visits Vikings
• Favre questions likely from shareholders
• Packers reportedly weigh trade offers for Favre
• Favre returns to Lambeau Field
• Packers president supports GM, coach
• What they're saying about Favre
• Favre won't apply for reinstatement right away
• Sources: Packers claim Vikings tampered
• Favre may show up at camp
• Favre 'clears it up' in interview with Fox
• Few fans attend Favre rally in Milwaukee
• Pack fans rally, calling for Favre reinstatement
• Pack won't release Favre
• Sources: Favre seeks unconditional release
• Favre itching to return to field
Trade Commentary/Features• Clayton: History doesn't favor Favre, Jets
• Chadiha: Packers will be fine without Favre
• Wojciechowski: Divorce cause? Lack of trust
• Clayton: Deal is a downer for Favre
• Scouts Inc.: Jets now a playoff contender
• Clayton: Questions, answers on Favre trade
• Fantasy spin: Deal boosts value of many Jets
Other Commentary/Features• Clayton: 5 reasons Favre would start for Pack
• Mosley: Favre is QB turned ringmaster
• Wojciechowski: Favre and away the best solution
• Clayton: Favre wins ugly duel
• Clayton: It's a painful divorce
• Chadiha: Rodgers unfazed by Favre circus
• Yasinskas: Favre makes sense for Bucs
• Wojciechowski: Packers can't win this game
• Clayton: It's a delicate situation
• Wright Thompson: Catching Favre's fastballs
• Wojciechowski: What's the answer, Packers?
• Williamson: Where could he end up?
• Seifert: What happens after HOF QBs move on
• Paolantonio: Favre is overhyped
• Kiper: 2005 analysis of prospect Rodgers
• Madden '09 cover boy Favre to stay retired
• Thompson: Brett, we miss you already
• Wojciechowski: Worth the price of admission
• Price of signed Favre items to go up
• Yasinskas: Rodgers ready to take the reins
• FB Outsiders: Measuring Favre's greatness
• Sando: Gunslinger mentality defined Favre
• Yasinskas: Majkowski on Favre's legacy
• Clayton: Questions surrounding Favre
• Clayton: Packers will miss Favre's magic
• Chadiha: Favre will regret decision
• Keating: Favre just getting started
• Hashmarks: Favre fun-loving guy
• Burning Questions: Is Rodgers ready?
• Experts: Is Favre the best, or among them?
• Favre's top 10 moments
• Forde: Favre's flair for dramatic started in college
• Favre's rating in Mel Kiper's '91 draft guide
• Favre's hometown quiet on day of his retirement
• Sadness, shock envelops Green Bay
• Wounded Army officer has last ball thrown
• Around sports: What they're saying
• Fantasy spin: Rodgers not top-20 QB
• Scouts: Rodgers has talent to succeed
• Packers local: Complete hometown coverage
Video• Favre traded to Jets for conditional pick
• Jets GM on trade for Favre, imminent release of Pennington
• Steve Young on Favre's Jets future
• Cris Carter on what trade means to Jets?
• Schlereth: Exciting news for Jets
• Sal Pal on Favre's move to AFC
• Rachel Nichols on Favre's pre-trade mindset
• Favre interview: Part 3 | 2 | 1
SportsNation• How will Jets do with Favre behind center?
• Fans react to Favre's retirement
Photo Galleries• Favre flashback
• Top TD guns
• Top TD targets
- '47 Brand Women's Green Bay Packers Green Sherpette Knit Hat