For those who haven't heard, the Packers will be retiring quarterback Brett Favre's jersey during the Monday Night Football opener, and ESPN is planning a little bit of coverage.
Zulgad wrote about a couple former Packers, Ryan Longwell and Robert Ferguson, who now play for the Vikings. They both had some nice things to say about Favre, and it sounds like they're appreciative of the front-row seat they'll have September 8.
“It’ll be good for the simple fact that they are retiring his jersey, he left the game on his own terms,” Ferguson said. “There are a lot of things that are positive about the way he retired. I’m happy for him and happy to see him go into the second chapter of his life.”That's all fine and dandy, but I'm left curious about where Longwell was going with this comment about the beginning of the Aaron Rodgers era:
...“Obviously, you’re a football fan before you start playing this game,” Longwell said. “I think in the all the years that I put in with Brett and played with him it’s pretty neat to be there for an event like that. Whether you’re on the opposing team or not, it’s going to be pretty neat. “It will be pretty crazy. I think the fans will be excited about Brett’s situation, I think they’ll be a little uneasy about their quarterback situation, but I think it’s a great opportunity for us at the same time.”
“It’s very tough. I saw so many guys come in and try to replace legends over there,” Longwell said. “He’s (Favre) probably a top three or four legend in the whole organization ever. Aaron’s got the mind to do it, he’s got the tools to do it. The media situation over there is different than anywhere else. He’s just got to withstand that.”Please don't take this the wrong way. I think the reporters in Green Bay and Milwaukee are very fair and even-handed. They ask the right questions and almost always offer good information to the readers, viewers, and listeners.
I'm not saying the media in southern Wisconsin isn't tough. They're not pansies down there. However, Longwell is intimating here that the "media situation" in Green Bay/Milwaukee is somehow difficult to deal with.
I read this quote, and I'm led to believe Longwell thinks dealing with Bob McGinn is like a guillotine compared to Patrick Reusse and Tom Powers. And I think Longwell's out of his freaking mind if he honestly believes that.
Here is the game story from the Packers' NFC Championship loss to the Giants. If the roles were reversed, and it was an underdog Green Bay team going into Giants Stadium to steal a conference title, the New York media would have never let it go. Tom Coughlin would have been answering questions about his job security at his postgame press conference.
In Green Bay, you get the consoling hand on your shoulder.
Honestly, Aaron Rodgers probably couldn't ask for a better city in which to take over the job of a Hall of Fame player. More than anywhere else, the fans and media will rally behind Rodgers from the get-go, instead of waiting to skewer him the first time he throws a bad interception.