September 20, 2010
We all knew it would eventually happen. A 40-year-old quarterback, no matter his skill or toughness, is going to hit a wall, strictly set by the human body and how far it can or can't go.
Brett Favre(notes) is currently realizing that he isn't 20 anymore. Sure, he can tell us all he wants that it's just about football, and he can rock jeans that make him look like he's heading into his junior year at USC, but the clock stops for no man, even if that man is No. 4.
The Vikings are now 0-2, and while not all the blame can land on Favre, a lot of it can for Sunday's loss to the Dolphins. He threw three interceptions at home, never looked to have any feel in the pocket, and struggled to make the right decision at any point during the 14-10 loss, highlighted by a fumble in the third quarter in his own end zone that Miami recovered for a score.
This isn't just a question of if Favre should be their starting quarterback, it's more of a question of what happens to him if he isn't. Favre is infamous for skipping workouts and camps that he doesn't see necessary, so what are his thoughts on sitting on the sideline for the first time since 1991?
No matter how much power Favre carries around the Vikings locker room, he will be pulled if he has another game or two like the last one, even by someone like Brad Childress, who handles Favre the same way an art enthusiast would handle moving the "Mona Lisa" to another wall in the Louvre. So far this year he has one touchdown to four interceptions, and continues to take plays away from the Vikings' best player, a running back by the name of Adrian Peterson.
Peterson, the type of guy that never seems to speak up when he isn't getting the touches, has to be as frustrated as anyone out there. In 2008, when Peterson was the main main in Minnesota, he had 10 regular season games with 100 yards or more rushing.
Last season, when Favre joined the group, Peterson only had three games with more than 100 yards rushing, but when he carried for 97 yards or more in regular season games, the Vikings went 5-0. This is the first instance when Favre actually ruined a great Peterson performance, and you can blame that as much on the coaching as you can on the guy wearing No. 4.
At some point, someone is going to have to make the executive decision to give arguably the best runner in the league the ball more than they do, and let him make things happen like he did on Sunday in Miami (and no, I refuse to blame AP for not getting in the end zone at the end of the fourth quarter. Let him get outside the tackles on second or third down and he is most likely going to make someone miss or run someone over. Why they're running it straight up the middle like that is beyond me. It's almost like Childress forgot his play sheet on the way to the stadium and just wrote four plays on his arm and hoped they'd fool the Dolphins.)
It isn't a pretty picture in Minnesota right now, and a lot of the unrest lies with their star quarterback, that seems to always make things a bit more interesting than they need to be. If he gets pulled, should we expect him to pout his way out of another organization and into a different one, like he did with Green Bay and New York?
If he's pulled for another play caller, it would be an interesting end to a career that has never truly been that normal.
Brett, just take it from my uncle, who tells me these words at least twice a week -- getting old really, really sucks.
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