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Favre Stays Retired

UPDATED (7:17 p.m.)...

Quarterback Brett Favre has decided to remain retired rather than playing this season for the Minnesota Vikings, the team has announced.

After Favre informed the club of his decision, Vikings Coach Brad Childress said in a written statement on the team's website: "It was a rare and unique opportunity to consider adding not only a future Hall of Fame quarterback but one that is very familiar with our system and division. That does not detract from the team that we have. As we have consistently communicated, we feel good about our team and they have put forth a tremendous effort this offseason preparing for the season ahead. With this behind us, we look forward to getting to Mankato and getting training camp under way."

The Vikings are scheduled to report to training camp Thursday and Favre had promised a decision by then.

Favre told ESPN: "It was the hardest decision I've ever made. I didn't feel like physically I could play at a level that was acceptable... I had to be careful not to commit for the wrong reasons. They were telling me, 'You went through all this, you had the surgery and you've got to finish it off.' But I have legitimate reasons for my decision. I'm 39 with a lot of sacks to my name."

Favre's decision was first reported by the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Many people around the league had expected Favre to come out of retirement for a second offseason in a row.

He underwent surgery for a partially torn biceps tendon, which plagued him last season while he was with the New York Jets, and was working out regularly at a high school near his home in Mississippi.

Vikings officials were monitoring those workouts. Playing for the Vikings would have enabled him to play his former team, the Green Bay Packers, twice this season, and might have given him an opportunity to contend for another Super Bowl appearance.

Favre had said at one point that his decision would depend upon the progress of his rehabilitation.

However, there were reports in recent days that Favre had conflicted feelings about another comeback, wondering whether he could play another season and maintain a level of performance that he considered acceptable.

Without Favre, the Vikings plan to have Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels compete for their starting job at quarterback.

Favre was only the league's 21st-rated passer last season while with the Jets, throwing 22 interceptions to go with his 22 touchdown passes. He and the team played poorly down the stretch, and the Jets missed the playoffs and fired Eric Mangini as their coach. Several Jets players were publicly critical of Favre after the season.

If Favre, who turns 40 in October, does remain retired, he will finish his career with 65,127 passing yards, 464 touchdowns and 310 interceptions.

He spent 16 seasons with the Packers before leaving the franchise unceremoniously last summer. Favre retired following a highly successful 2007 season in which he played well and the Packers reached the NFC title game before losing in overtime. The Packers made plans to move on with Aaron Rodgers as their starter at quarterback. Favre changed his mind and decided to continue playing but clashed with the organization, and General Manager Ted Thompson in particular, over his proposed return, and the Packers traded him to the Jets.

Favre announced another retirement earlier this offseason. But the Jets released him off their reserve-retired list following an NFL draft in which they traded up to select potential replacement Mark Sanchez, and Favre began toying with another return.

The Vikings had been his team of choice last offseason but the Packers wouldn't allow him to go to a division rival. This time, Favre was a free agent and could sign with any team of his choosing. The Vikings could have surrounded Favre with gifted tailback Adrian Peterson, a solid offensive line and a reliable defense, and he was familiar with the coaching staff and the offensive system. Many observers in and around the sport considered another Favre un-retirement a virtual lock, and some Vikings teammates reportedly were in contact with Favre to urge him to play.

Favre and the Vikings reportedly had a one-year, approximately $10 million contract agreement in place if Favre had opted to play.

By Mark Maske  |  July 28, 2009; 5:33 PM ET  | Category:  Vikings Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Good. I hope(but very much doubt it) that's the last we'll hear about Favre! For the past 4-5 years we've heard "is he going to retire, will he return". ENOUGH ALREADY, AND GOOD RIDDANCE!!

Posted by: WilliamConway | July 29, 2009 12:47 PM

Doh! I was really looking forward to seeing Brett play one more year, but he would have looked silly in purple anyway...

Posted by: ozpunk | July 28, 2009 11:50 PM

I read this to mean they wouldn't let the diva skip 2-a-days.
Can the drama end now, please?

Posted by: minorthread | July 28, 2009 8:47 PM

It as an ill-advised move for Favre to come out of retirement with the Packers. It seems like going out at the top doesn't have the same appeal it once did.

Posted by: signof4 | July 28, 2009 8:22 PM

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