GREEN BAY, Wis. – They scampered about in No. 4 jerseys, two 9-year-olds named Ryan and Tyler with wild imaginations. What if their hero decided to make a surprise comeback? What if Brett Favre’s retirement was just a bad dream?
These guys were saying, ‘Maybe Brett will be here!’ ” said Tim Gersonde, referring to the son and nephew he recently drove two hours from Milwaukee to watch their first Packers minicamp practice. “I was like, ‘I don’t think so.’ ”
There was no sign of Favre on that mid-June morning, but speculation about the quarterback’s future continues to spread. Reports began to surface last week that Favre is contemplating a return, polarizing those from the fabled frozen tundra.
Some, like Gersonde, believe “it’s time to move on.” Others want Favre back despite his having walked away in early March.
Regardless, the Green Bay area has gotten a taste of life without Favre. And for many in this Packers-crazed community, it remains hard to swallow.
Kim Stocke even begins to cry when asked her reaction to Favre’s retirement. Dressed in a Favre T-shirt with a Green Bay helmet tattooed on her ankle, the Packers are this middle-aged Milwaukee school teacher’s world. Stocke has a “Packers room” full of team memorabilia, including Favre-signed articles she has purchased.
Trying to get Favre’s autograph herself wasn’t feasible, not with Stocke having a special-needs child. Stocke and her daughter Maggie watch every Packers game together. Wheelchair-bound and unable to speak because of cerebral palsy and retardation, Stocke says Maggie expresses her love for the Packers by “whooping and hollering” while she screams at the television.
For 16 seasons, Stocke and Favre shared a common bond through the Packers. Favre, too, could use football as an escape from his family issues such as wife Deanna’s battle with breast cancer and the sudden death of his father Irvin. “He just seems to be a person â€” a reachable person â€” where other sports figures kind of stand back,” Stocke said. “He and his wife have gotten up-close and personal (publicly). He was like a family member.”
Favre holds the same standing just blocks from where Stocke was attending minicamp practice. Brett Favre’s Steakhouse was not only a successful business venture but a place he would frequent while living in Green Bay. Steakhouse manager Daniel DeLorensi said he will never forget Favre’s reaction when arriving at the restaurant and finding his usual “Trophy Room” dining area filled.
“He said, ‘I’m a Southern boy. I can eat on the floor,’ ” said DeLorensi, who spotted Favre in the back holding a plate while sitting on the ground.
*****Farve needs to hang it up and stay retired. There comes a time when it is time to move on. The Green Packer fans have to realize there has been a changing of the guard and the Packers need to go with a new quarterback to give their team the best chance to compete in the future. Right now it’s time for Aaron Rodgers to take the Packers’ helm. If Farve wants to go to the Vikings let him go and then beat the life out of him when you play against him in the first game of the season.
If I were a Packer player and Farve went to the Vikings I would want to kill that guy when he took the field. Farve needs take his football and his cleats and go home. Any success he would have in 2008 would be short-lived. The party’s over and it’s time to call it a day. The Packers had this same problem when Bart Starr left and sometimes you just have to start over and re-build and now is that time and the Packers must do it in 2008 without Bart and Brett.*****
RICHMOND, Va. — Imprisoned quarterback Michael Vick filed for bankruptcy protection while serving time for federal dogfighting charges, saying he owes between $10 million and $50 million to creditors.
Vick filed Chapter 11 papers in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Newport News on Monday. The seven largest creditors listed in the court papers are owed a total of about $12.8 million.
Vick is serving a 23-month prison sentence at the U.S. Penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kan., after pleading guilty last year to bankrolling a dogfighting ring. He was subsequently suspended indefinitely without pay and lost all his major sponsors, including Nike. He also faces state charges related to dogfighting.
The suspended Atlanta Falcons quarterback “will seek to rebuild his life and career” upon his release, according to the filings.
*****I’m feeling no Pity or Pain for Michael Vick. The guy is a total idiot and they should give him 23 more months in prison for being Atlanta’s all-time #1 head case. Maybe they ought to put him in a pen or cage with those dogs and see how he holds up.*****
*****We utilized the services of FoxSports.com for this article*****