Thursday, Aug. 7 at 1 p.m. ET

Packers Trade Brett Favre to the Jets

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Mark Maske
Washington Post Staff Columnist
Thursday, August 7, 2008; 1:00 PM

Washington Post columnist and NFL Insider blogger Mark Maske will be online Thursday, Aug. 7 at 1 p.m. ET to discuss the trade of quarterback Brett Favre to the New York Jets.

A transcript follows.

Mark writes the NFL Insider blog, and is the author of the new book War Without Death: A Year of Extreme Competition in Pro Football's NFC East.

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washingtonpost.com: Mark should be logging in shortly.

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New York: Mark, let me get out there first. This is a great trade for the Jets. Chad Pennnington, God love him, has no arm. None. Favre is at worst no worse than Pennington. And Woody Johnson has all of the money in the world (the "Johnson" is as in "Johnson and Johnson") and nobody should care how much money Favre makes. There is no downside to this move whatsoever. Even if the upside is tiny, it's better than nothing.

Mark Maske: I would say this is a great trade for the Jets in terms of making them relevant in the NFL and in New York. They will definitely be worth watching. It's also a great trade for the NFL to have Favre in New York. But I'm not sure it will work out spectacularly from a football standpoint. Favre has very little familiarity with this coaching staff. He will have to learn an entirely new offensive system and here we are only a few weeks before the season.

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Silver Spring, Md.: Just what we need -- another self-centered petulant athlete -- no matter how great Favre's career has been, his name is mud in my book now.

Mark Maske: I think a lot of people feel the same way you do. This entire episode has been a quite a stain on Favre's legacy, and I think it also has affected the way many people look at the Packers.

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DC Cheesehead: Reports out of Green Bay are that the Packers tried to trade Brett to the Jets last week, but Brett refused to talk to the Jets (or Tampa Bay, for that matter). Why?

Was he really holding out to be released so he could sign with the Vikings?

Mark Maske: I think the only reason that Favre went to GB earlier this week was because he thought the road to Minnesota went through Green Bay. I think he definitely believed he could pressure the Packers into releasing him or trading him to where he wanted to go, and that was Minnesota. When the Packers didn't budge, he was left with the choice of playing for the Jets or not playing at all.

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Washington, D.C.: Seems like the trade to the Jets happened very quickly, without a lot of thought on Brett's part. What are the chances Brett hasn't realized what he's gotten himself into: new teammates, coaches, fans, conference, and location, and now after a few weeks Brett will realize he made a mistake and should have stayed retired? Do you think Brett really thought this trade through, or just wanted to get on the playing field and took any deal?

Mark Maske: Obviously you can never rule anything out with this guy. But clearly he wants to play this season, and his only alternative at this moment is to play for the Jets. I don't know about long-term, but I would assume he would see this season through in New York.

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Philadelphia: The biggest winner of this trade will be Chicago, when they snatch up soon to be released Pennington and finally get a quarterback.

Mark Maske: I think that's a very good possibility. You also have to wonder if the Vikings might make a run at him after not getting Favre. If it's not one of those two teams, he's looking at joining a rebuilding team like Atlanta, Miami or Kansas City, or going somewhere as a backup.

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Washington, D.C.: Has no one else noticed that Favre has turned into an interception machine when it comes to playoff games? He has killed his team so many times in the playoffs, notwithstanding that he plays "with such a love of the game, yada yada." Big mistake by the Jets.

Mark Maske: I'm sure the Jets would be overjoyed if Favre gets a chance to throw a few interceptions in the playoffs this season. This is a team that had 4 wins last season, and without Favre, there was little or no reason to think the had any chance of reaching the playoffs.

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Packer stockholder in Silver Spring: Thanks for this chat! Once the regular season starts, what impact will this circus have on the Pack? Can the team shrug it off, will the media harp on this story when things go wrong, or both?

Mark Maske: Clearly that depends on how Aaron Rodgers plays, especially early in the season. If he gets off to a slow start, all you will hear is how things would have been with Favre. If he plays reasonable well, you'll see people in Green Bay willing to let this go.

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Concord, N.H.: What effect is this incident going to have on how Favre is viewed, post-career? I admire the man's competitive will and refusal to be shepherded out into the pasture before he's ready to quit...but I have to wonder if it will be worth it to play another year or two of football. He'd have to bring his team at least to the playoffs without looking like an old fool.

Mark Maske: I'd say you make a very good point. People will always remember this episode about Favre. He was viewed so favorably before this, and now public opinion about him and who is at fault in this whole episode is very much split.

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Waldorf, MD: Is it a fair assumption that the Packers really, truly think they have their guy for the next 10 seasons in Aaron Rodgers, or did this whole thing happen because the front office/coaches and Favre simply couldn't co-exist anymore?

Mark Maske: As of a week ago, I would have said the Packers had simply decided to move on with Rodgers. Until that point, they had been completely unwavering in that position. But then Favre showed up in Green Bay, and the Packers were willing to let bygones be bygones and to allow Favre to compete with Rodgers for the starting job. So clearly, they knew they would have been a better team this season with Favre than with Rodgers. So it came down to Favre not being able to coexist with the Packers much more than the Packers not being able or willing to try and coexist with him.

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Anonymous: Does this mean we can now quit hearing about Farve for at least a week?

Mark Maske: No, actually I'm currently in a car driving to BWI to try and get to Cleveland to cover the press conference that's scheduled for Favre at 6 p.m. You will continue to hear plenty about this story for days and weeks to come. So many people tell me they're sick of the Favre story, and yet there's a huge response every time we write about it or do a chat like this.

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Baltimore, MD: Do you think the Jets really intend to pay Favre $12 million this year? Or do you think they'd insist on him renegotiating? And if they attempt to renegotiate, doesn't that leave open the possibility that Favre would refuse the renegotiation, force the Jets to release him, and open the way for a team like Minnesota to sign him for a song?

Mark Maske: At the moment, the Jets seem prepared to take on his contract as-is. By cutting Pennington, they will have the salary cap room to be able to put his entire 12 million salary on the books. They could renegotiate his contract in the future, but for now it doesn't appear that it's a necessity.

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Bristow, Va.: Brett Favre to the Jets -- it does not make them a playoff team. There are 10 other teams in the AFC that are better than the Jets. They have no shot of getting past the Patriots for the East title which means they are staring at competing for the Wild Card spots -- the Jaguars, Texans, Broncos, Titans and Browns are all in line for those and probably will finish with better records than the Jets.

Or am I wrong on this?

Mark Maske: I would agree that they are a playoff long-shot at best, given the strength and depth of the AFC. But they also have a heck of a lot better chance than they did 24 hours ago. And at least now, there's a reason to pay attention to them.

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Providence, RI: Hi there -- As a New Englander, I'm curious how you think this will affect the AFC East... it should be interesting to have Farve playing against Brady more often, right? Thanks!

Mark Maske: It certainly will add a little boost to the Patriots-Jets rivalry, as if that was necessary. I don't see the Jets being on equal footing with the Patriots as a team, but Favre won't be afraid to speak his mind about Belichick and the Patriots and that will give those games that much more intrigue.

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New York: There's now a fascinating dynamic with the Jets. The starting QB is years older than both of his "bosses," his Head Coach as his General Manager. Has this ever happened before?

Mark Maske: Clearly you had that dynamic with Vinny Testeverde as well. The thing that interests me most about this, however, is that Favre has no real connection to anyone in the Jets organization. He really is starting over. He'll be in a new offensive system, and I think the adjustment will be a lot tougher from a football perspective than some people realize.

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Washington, D.C.: How good will the Jets receivers be at adjusting to having Favre as their starting quarterback? They are used to having soft Pennington passes. Favre is known to break receivers' fingers.

Mark Maske: I don't think that to be a major issue. A ball that is thrown accurately is easier to catch, no matter how hard it is thrown, than some of the passes that were thrown their way by Pennington and Clemens.

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Rockville, MD: I don't think it affects Brett's legacy. Jerry Rice played for the raiders, seahawks & tried for the broncos. Everyone remembers him as a 49er. If Aaron Rodgers never turns into a good QB & they miss the playoffs this year, GB management will look like fools for years.

Mark Maske: I don't think simply playing for another team affects his legacy. I do think the way he has handled the entire thing has affected his legacy. Remember, the Packers were willing to take him back this week. He is the one who told the Packers that he couldn't put everything that happened behind him and pick up where things left off last season.

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Rockville, MD: How much of a honeymoon does Aaron Rodgers get as QB for the Pack? During the skins-colts game, they showed footage of him missing throws at a Packer scrimmage (as well as Brett landing in GB).

Mark Maske: He gets none. At the practices I attended this week in Green Bay, the fans were chanting Favre's name. He is in a very, very difficult situation and will get no slack if he doesn't play well.

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Mark Maske: Sorry I had to cut this short, but I'm about to get on a plane. Thanks for the questions, I'll see you at the next chat.

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Editor's Note: washingtonpost.com moderators retain editorial control over Discussions and choose the most relevant questions for guests and hosts; guests and hosts can decline to answer questions. washingtonpost.com is not responsible for any content posted by third parties.


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