|Favre joins Jets after trade from Packers|
|Written by Admin|
|Thursday, 07 August 2008 09:09|
Favre's summertime soap opera ended Wednesday night when the Green Bay Packers traded their iconic quarterback to the New York Jets, who haven't had a star of No. 4's stature since the days Joe Namath was slinging passes and strolling down Broadway.
Brett's a Jet, until the day he retires - again.
``It's like a marriage that ends,'' Packers president Mark Murphy said Thursday. ``It happens. Neither party is at fault.''
Favre, who announced his NFL playing career was over in March, was expected to be introduced at a 6 p.m. news conference at Cleveland Browns Stadium before the Jets played their first exhibition game.
Needing to get up to speed with the Jets' offensive playbook, Favre wanted to join his new team as quickly as possible so he can get ready for the club's season opener against the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 7.
He spent the night at his home near Hattiesburg, Miss., before flying to New Jersey to meet with Jets officials.
Five months after a tearful goodbye to a Hall of Fame career, Favre, who won a Super Bowl title and three MVP awards in 16 seasons before his acrimonious split with the Packers, is joining a Jets team which went 4-12 last season.
For the moment, Favre brings the Jets publicity - second stringers in the New York area, they're far overshadowed by the champion Giants.
Already, his jersey is being scooped up by fans who awakened Thursday morning to the news that the Mississippi country boy with the cannon right arm is on his way to the big city.
Until the deal was announced, it appeared the 38-year-old might be on his way to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. But the Jets, who went to camp with Chad Pennington and Kellen Clemens battling to be the starter, persisted and landed Favre for a fourth-round draft pick in 2009. Pennington, who was benched midway through last season, is expected to be released by the Jets.
A draft pick is hardly a steep price for a player who holds league records in career yards (61,655), touchdowns (442), wins (160) and hasn't missed a start in 275 consecutive games.
``We wish him the best,'' Packers coach Mike McCarthy said Thursday. ``There's no ill feelings. He has a positive reputation within this organization.''
New York gave up a conditional pick for Favre. According to NFL.com, the selection would turn into a third-rounder if Favre plays in 50 percent of the plays this season, a second-rounder if he plays in 70 percent and the Jets make the playoffs, or a first-round pick if he plays in 80 percent and the Jets make it to the Super Bowl.
``I am looking forward to seeing Brett Favre in a New York Jets uniform,'' Jets chairman and CEO Woody Johnson said in a statement. ``He represents a significant addition to this franchise, and reflects our commitment to putting the best possible team on the field.''
The Jets are hoping Favre can bring them some of the magic he created at Lambeau Field, a place where the sight of him dropping back into the pocket on a frozen Sunday and rocketing a ball downfield is as etched in Packers lore as legendary coach Vince Lombardi walking the sidelines.
Favre is coming off one of his most productive seasons, one during which he answered any doubts about whether he still had game. He passed for 4,155 yards, his most since 1998, and had 28 TDs with 15 interceptions. The arm strength was still there, and so was his ability to improvise and make something of nothing.
He led the Packers to the NFC championship, where they lost to the Giants in overtime. Favre's final pass was intercepted, setting up New York's winning field goal. That pick, a blemish on an otherwise brilliant season, may have haunted him and driven Favre back onto the field.
In New York, Favre will step behind an offensive line rebuilt during the offseason by the additions of free agents Alan Faneca and Damien Woody. He'll have wide receivers Laveranues Coles and Jerricho Cotchery as his primary targets.
He'll work under coach Eric Mangini - Favre is one year older than his new boss.
Following weeks of back-and-forth posturing and conjecture about Favre's future, the Packers had little choice but to trade their popular superstar. Once Favre had announced he was quitting, Green Bay decided to hand its offense over to Aaron Rodgers, a former first-round pick whose every throw will by dissected by Green Bay's rabid fans.
At one point, it appeared Favre, whose preference was to be traded inside the NFC North, and Packers would come to a reconciliation. But earlier this week, McCarthy said after six hours of ``brutally honest'' conversations over two days that he felt Favre didn't have the right mind-set to play for the Packers.
``The train has left the station,'' McCarthy said.
On Thursday, it stopped in New York.