Shutdown Corner - NFL

The Tweets came hot and heavy Tuesday morning when the buzz started that Brett Favre(notes) was, in fact, staying retired this time. Judd Zulgad of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune was first on the news, reporting on his Twitter account that Favre was telling teammates Monday night that he was done with football.

The reason this time? An ankle injury he suffered in the Minnesota Vikings' NFC Championship game loss to the New Orleans Saints. Zulgad then reported that the Vikings feel that the situation is "fluid," and the team may up the ante by increasing his $13 million salary in 2010. Of course, he'd have to report to pick up that money.

The Associated Press has jumped in with more:

A person with knowledge of the situation tells The Associated Press that Brett Favre has informed the Vikings he will not return to Minnesota for a second season.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Tuesday because the team had not made an official announcement. The person says the 40-year-old Favre called coach Brad Childress to say his injured ankle is not responding as well to surgery and rehabilitation as he had hoped.

But as Zulgad wrote, keep in mind who and when this is. Last year, we heard the same sad story from the same sad Brett Favre — only last year, it happened in late July. From SI's Peter King:

"It's hard to admit I'm not 25 anymore,'' Brett Favre said late Tuesday night, when what he'd done began to sink in. He still sounded stunned that a few hours earlier he'd called Minnesota coach Brad Childress and shunned his dream job: quarterback on a team with a great defense and the best running back in football, with coaches who run a scheme he could operate falling out of bed.

"I passed up the greatest chance I could have had right now, and it hurts,'' Favre said. "By saying no, I know I'm leaving an incredible opportunity on the table, and that opportunity is not coming back.''

In truth, Favre knows nothing of the sort. What he does know is that if he changes his mind again, the Vikings will welcome him back with open arms. While it's possible that the ankle-related retirement story is real, it's also entirely possible that in a week dominated by Albert Haynesworth(notes), the Hall of Fame, and a rush of training camp stories, Favre's own internal Media-ometer went off, telling him that he hasn't been talked about enough in recent days.

That's sure to change now — when Favre makes his supposed announcement, and again in a few weeks, when he's just as likely to rise, as Lazarus from the dead, and grace us once again with his presence.

Rich Eisen, to the Batmobile!

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