The usual disclaimer: We've been through plenty of bad reporting from Ed Werder and ESPN, so take their stuff with a grain of salt. However, the latest report on Favre is a) startling enough to cause some concern, and b) plausible, if not believable, given Favre's track record of wavering when he needs to make a decision. Here it is:
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.
If this report is indeed accurate -- and it certainly sounds like Werder could be hitting the nail on the head with this one -- then all bets are off. This has all the indications of Favre looking to weasel his way out of training camp, using his "agonized, woe is me" state to allow the process to continue beyond the start of camp next week.
What continues to be so incredibly frustrating about this storyline is all the reports that completely contradict each other. Just a few days ago, Thomas George of NFL.com was telling us that Favre would almost certainly make a decision by Friday of this week. George wrote: "[Favre] thinks his body -- and specifically his arm -- can withstand season-long exertion." And Werder countered today by contradicting every word of that:
What seems unresolved in Favre's mind is whether, at age 39, he can reasonably expect to be healthy enough to play 16-plus games for the Vikings while maintaining the standard of performance he expects of himself.
Which one is it?!? Does he or doesn't he think his arm can withstand a complete season?
With all the uncertainty surrounding this whole saga, one thing has been crystal clear throughout: It would be disastrous for the Vikings to start training camp and not have a decision from Brett. Unfortunately, that could be where this thing is heading if the team doesn't have the spine to say "no thanks" if he can't make up his mind.
George wrote: "Ultimately, the Minnesota Vikings expect the answer to be yes. And those closest to Favre do, too." Werder's source said: "He might have already decided against playing again" if not for the involvement of Viking players. Again, I ask: Which one is it?!? I've had more than enough of this back-and-forth drama.