Short-Term and Long-Term
With Brett Favre, the 2009 Vikings will be better than they'd be with Tarvaris Jackson starting at QB, and no worse than they'd be with Sage Rosenfels starting at QB. And they have a chance to be much, much better with Favre than with Rosenfels.
But after 2009? Rosenfels? Jackson? Booty? Somebody else? We just don't know. I could see Booty being a later-round QB pick that gets the job after after a few years not playing at all. I could see Rosenfels or Jackson getting the job. I could see Childress bringing in another mediocre (or worse) veteran. But with any of these options, it's clear we've just pushed questions about the Viking QB position back yet another year.
To be fair, even if Favre didn't join the Vikings, questions about the Viking QB position might have been just as unanswered in 2010. But Rosenfels, Jackson, or Booty might have emerged (or still might if Favre gets hurt--who knows?). Now we're likely looking at 2009 being the year this team has geared up for a Super Bowl run, with questions again in 2010.
I said in May that Favre does not become a playoff X-Factor, citing his recent record:
Brett Favre's teams haven't won two playoff games during a single season since the 1997 season. In the 00s, Favre's teams have lost three home playoff games to seemingly inferior opponents, Favre has thrown two playoff overtime interceptions, and Favre has thrown multiple interceptions in four of his eight playoff starts.
But then, as I said earlier today, the '09 Vikings will be the best team Favre has had since the '97 Packers. I do think the Vikings with Brett Favre at QB can win a Super Bowl (but I think the Vikings can win the Super Bowl every year).
If they do, I'll experience an ecstasy that will leave me unconcerned with 2010. If they don't, then we'll be back speculating about just what this team is going to do with the most important position once again.
I'm an optimist on the Vikings: I'm always willing to believe that whatever they are doing is bringing them closer to winning a Super Bowl.
Where were you?
I was sitting in a car, waiting to go to Super Target to buy groceries and season three of Dexter. On KFAN, Paul Allen shared Mark Rosen's report that Favre was on his way to Minnesota (like, literally, on a plane). My wife and I shared our disappointment, and Paul Allen and Paul Charchian proceeded to berate Viking fans who were disappointed.
ESPN has already shown video of Favre wearing a Viking helmet throwing the ball during practice.
For many years I've been friends with Rob, a die-hard Packer fan and die-hard Brett Favre fan. And now we're sharing emails about the excitement of Favre, and he seems genuinely excited and sincere about rooting for the Vikings.
Two Viking players just had their fantasy potential skyrocket: Bernard Berrian and Sidney Rice. Favre loves to chuck it deep, and he's going to love seeing Berrian sprinting deep downfield. And Sidney Rice is the sort of athletic young receiver that I can see Favre connecting with frequently.
Get the DeLorean
Last week I was offered free tickets to the Vikings' preseason game this week. I turned them down: preseason football is dreadfully boring (I've attended two preseason games, and I stayed at one of them from beginning to end).
Help me out, older Viking fans
Have the Vikings ever had a QB with an arm as strong as Brett Favre, even at age 40? I remember in 1999 thinking I had never seen anybody throw such perfect hard, darting passes than Jeff George. Tommy Kramer was a gunner too, wasn't he?
But Favre can just blaze the ball, far, fast, and hard. That will be fun.
A new standard
My old standard about how sports change in ways that, if you knew it years before, you'd probably pass out from shock, was this 2004 Monday Night game between Seattle and Dallas. If my late-'90s self heard that one day Mike Holmgren would coach the Seattle Seahawks including Jerry Rice and Bill Parcells would coach the Dallas Cowboys featuring Vinny Testaverde and Keyshawn Johnson, my late-'90s self would have his brain shattered. But now if I turn on the TV, I'll see a story about Michael Vick backing up Donovan McNabb on the Philadelphia Eagles with the high likelihood that there will be times both players are on the field at the same time, and then I'll see video of Brett Favre throwing passes at a Minnesota Viking practice.