You know, it makes me extremely happy when some of you good, kind readers out there do the heavy lifting so that I don't have to.
Luft Krigare, our friend from Vikings Valhalla, left a little tidbit in the FanPosts last night about Favre sending text messages to the Vikings from a cell phone that was issued to him by the Packers. Naturally, I was a bit worried about this. I probably shouldn't have been, but I was.
Then I woke up this morning, and I find a comment from Robert Rence pointing to a story that Kevin Seifert put out this morning saying that
A media report in Green Bay is refuting an earlier report that Brett Favre used a Packers-issued cell phone to talk to Minnesota Vikings coach Brad Childress and assistant coach Darrell Bevell.
The Green Bay Press-Gazette, citing two sources -- one in the NFL, another close to Favre -- reported that Favre does not have a team-issued cell phone.
"One-hundred percent, without a doubt, no Packers-issued phone," the source close to Favre said, according to the report.
Hmmmmm. . .if I might channel Ed Grimley for a moment, this whole situation seems just a little bit curious, I must say.
So, the Packers didn't issue Brett Favre a cell phone. . .but they've somehow managed to procure Brett Favre's phone records to be able to prove that he was making contact with the Minnesota Vikings somehow, and that they also know that he was sending text messages to members of the Vikings' coaching staff. I wonder how exactly that is.
For starters, there's no way that the Packers could know the content of any text messages that Favre was sending to anybody. Why? Because according to David Clevenger, a spokesperson for Verizon Wireless:
"We keep (text messages) for a very short time — days," said David Clevenger, Verizon's executive director of media relations for the Midwest region. "Then, we clean out our computers. We have 68 million customers, and we wouldn't be able to keep all their text messages. We have no reason to do it. There's no way they (the Packers) would be able to go back and pull up what was said (in the texts)."
But, the owners of the phone are able to see where the texts were sent, much like an itemized bill details every call made and received.
"If they own the phone, then they have the right to do that," Clevenger said.
Clevenger also said Verizon only began making text message destination numbers accessible to owners in May.
However, as we've already established, the Packers did NOT, in fact, own said telephone. Which leads me back to the previous question. . .how, exactly, did the Packers know what Favre was doing with a phone that the Packers have no connection with?
Apparently, Ted Thompson would have you believe that while he was in the middle of a heated dispute with the Packers front office, Brett Favre willingly turned over his personal phone records. . .the same personal phone records that would, potentially, be a smoking gun pointing towards his desire to play for the Minnesota Vikings. Now, believe me, I've questioned Favre's intelligence before, but even I can't believe that he would be this stupid. Honestly, this would be "guy from Star Trek wearing the red shirt that volunteers to beam down to the planet with Kirk, Spock, and McCoy" levels of stupid.
Then again, Ted Thompson IS smarter than we are. . .if you don't believe me, I'm sure you could ask him.
So, if Brett Favre didn't willingly turn his phone records over to the Packers' front office. . .and, again, there's absolutely no reason to think that he would. . .then one could reasonably draw the conclusion that the Green Bay front office received the records through slightly more nefarious means. If they got them from the cell phone provider, be it Verizon or any other company. . .well, that's where this little ditty comes into play. It's a federal statute concerning the "Interception and Disclosure of Wire, Oral, or Electronic Communications." If the Packers got Brett Favre's phone records from any source not named "Brett Favre," they're in violation of said statute.
(Props to GFViking at Purple Thoughts for bringing the statute to everyone's attention.)
If this is true, then to borrow a line from a song. . .what Ted Thompson needs is a good defense, 'cause he'll be feeling like a criminal. (No word on whether he'll not he'll need to be redeemed for the one he's sinned against. . .or if that's all he ever knew of love. I'll stop now.)
Wouldn't it be sweet to see this whole tampering charade. . .and if you think it's anything other than a charade at this point, then you're in need of some sort of special test. . .end with Ted Thompson being brought up on federal charges?
Seriously, I'd love to see exactly what kind of "proof" the Packers have here, and how they went about acquiring it. Brad Childress certainly doesn't appear to be worried. I don't see any reason for anyone to be worried. The story from the Green Bay side seemingly changes every day in an effort for ol' Ted Thompson to save face. In the end, I'm guessing that it will fail miserably.
Oh, hey, did I mention that Training Camp officially starts tomorrow and all of our draft picks are signed and ready to report on time? Thank goodness for that. The sooner the league comes out and reassures us that the Vikings did absolutely nothing wrong. . .which is the only reasonable conclusion that any reasonable person could draw. . .the better it will be for everybody. Except for the Green Bay Packers. And Ted Thompson. And hey, when it comes to that, who cares?
That's all for now, folks. . .might be back with more later on tonight, and if not, we'll see you back here tomorrow.