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Is Favre still one of the best?(espn.com)

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by umair, May 18, 2007.

  1. umair

    umair Cheesehead

    Aug 12, 2006

    Len Pasquarelli: From a solely statistical standpoint, Brett Favre certainly appears to be a quarterback whose physical skills are in decline. His 70.9 quarterback rating in 2005 was the worst of his career since becoming a starter, and the 72.7 rating he posted last season was the third-lowest. His 56.0 percent completion mark in 2006 was his poorest ever and the 2005 and 2006 seasons represented the first since he moved into the starting lineup in which he had not thrown more touchdowns than interceptions.

    Those, obviously, are key numbers. And here's another one: 38. Favre will turn 38 years old in October, at about the midway point of the season, and one has to wonder about the effects of oxidation on the NFL's all-time iron man.

    But all the numbers aside, including just a dozen wins the past two seasons, Favre arguably remains among the league's top 10 quarterbacks. The critics point to his dubious judgment at times, but Favre has always been a gambler and a risk-taker, a guy typically capable of making a big play out of nothing. In terms of arm strength, his velocity might not be what it was five years ago, but on those occasions when he throws the ball with timing on inside routes, the zip is still there.

    It's difficult to assess Favre in some ways, because the talent surrounding him has diminished, and that has played some role in his decline as well. The Packers have lost three starting offensive linemen the past three years, and deep-threat wide receiver Javon Walker has departed, too. Favre played most of 2005 without an injured Ahman Green and now the star tailback has exited in free agency. There's been a talent drain in Green Bay, and not much has been done to supplant the playmakers on offense. At this point in his career, Favre is still good enough to win. But not even a much younger Favre might have been able to singularly compensate for the defections on offense.

    Matt Mosley: In the interest of self-disclosure, I should probably start by saying that Brett Favre is my favorite quarterback, which led to some very questionable fantasy draft decisions earlier this decade. That's why it pains me to say that he's no longer among the top quarterbacks in the league. Sure, there are still flashes of his past brilliance, but the truth is that he's now a slightly above-average quarterback in the league.

    I could spend the next several paragraphs blaming this on Packers general manager Ted Thompson (not a bad idea), but for now, let's take a look at the facts.

    Even after bouncing back from an awful 2005 season in which he threw 20 touchdowns and 29 interceptions, Favre was by no means great last season. He threw 18 touchdowns and 18 interceptions, and his quarterback rating ranked 25th in the league -- one spot behind Chicago's Rex Grossman.

    Favre should be a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but when you talk about the league's top quarterbacks right now, he probably doesn't crack the top 10.

    His 56 percent completion percentage last season was caused, in part, by his team's horrendous start. The Packers were outscored 138-77 in their 1-4 start. The fact that Favre often makes poor decisions by trying to fit the ball into ridiculously tight spots is nothing new. It's just that he no longer has the ability -- or the offensive weapons -- to always dig his way out.

    In my mind, Favre is one of the greatest quarterbacks in league history. But as hard as it is to acknowledge, he's in the middle of the pack right now.

    John Clayton: Favre is still good enough to be a Pro Bowl quarterback. The question is whether he has the supporting cast to get him there.

    The NFC is wide open for top quarterback play. Though Favre may not be able to match the play of the two top AFC quarterbacks -- Peyton Manning and Tom Brady -- he can still compete with the best in the NFC. When he's healthy, Donovan McNabb is the NFC's best quarterback. Seattle's Matt Hasselbeck is a close second. But Favre's arm strength is exceptional, and getting back together with Mike McCarthy, who was his quarterbacks coach years ago, worked well last season. McCarthy helped Favre cut down his interceptions early in the season. Favre's completion percentage dropped to 56 in 2006, but that was largely because of the loss of receivers to injuries. Greg Jennings, one of the best rookie receivers of 2006, suffered a high ankle sprain at midseason, leaving Favre with few options. With a healthy receiving unit, Favre should be a 62 percent thrower again and have a chance for 20-25 touchdowns. That would put him in the top five in the NFC and among the best in the league. Favre still has it.

    Eric Allen: There's no doubt Favre has the ability to be a great player, but I think he pushes the envelope too much with his passes, and that leads to mistakes. For him to make the list of the best quarterbacks in the league, he would have to be a better game manager, and too often he hurts his team with poor downfield decisions. That said, he's still better than a lot of quarterbacks in the league. He's just not one of the best anymore.

    Joe Theismann: Favre still has the tools to be a top quarterback and he definitely has the mind-set and knowledge, but I'm not sure he has the weapons surrounding him to take him and this team to the next level. That's why he's not a top-five quarterback in this league anymore. The elite quarterbacks are able to put a team on their backs and lead it to the playoffs, even without great playmakers. Just look at Tom Brady last season. Favre is still an outstanding quarterback and a dangerous playmaker on the field, but I'm not sure he's in that upper echelon anymore.
  2. Raider Pride

    Raider Pride Cheesehead

    Jul 17, 2005
    The fact is Brett's skills have been declining.

    The fact is, his physical skills are now going to decline at a faster rate then they did two years ago because he is going to be 38 years of age in October.

    It is a fact. He will never be as good as he was, nor would anyone in his profession. It is simply the progression in his profession and the the decline of the human body due to age. No person can seriously argue against this fact.

    Brett is not a painter of art, he is not a writer who can develop his best work at 55 years of age because of mental development. Brett's only tools are his physical tools as far as being a top 10 QB in the NFL at the age of 38. His smarts and experience made him better from age 29 to 34 but after that it is all a decline.

    Life as a professional athlete is about rise and decline, and when the decline is unchangeable it is time to "GET READY" for change. NOTE: I Typed "GET READY FOR CHANGE."

    There is one person in the Packers Organization right now who has this figured out. He is not loved by many because of it, but he has it figured out.

    You all will thank him later.

  3. MassPackersFan

    MassPackersFan Cheesehead

    Apr 18, 2007
    His arm strength is pretty close to where it was. Full out running speed and quickness have decreased a lot. His shiftiness in the pocket is even better now I'd say. He doesn't scramble chaotically around anymore so much as elude the rush with his eyes down field or to the flat.
  4. PackFanInSC

    PackFanInSC Cheesehead

    Jul 29, 2006

    Being 38 myself, I am not sure if I should be worried. Should I start saving up to get my Rascal Scooter??

    Seriously, as we get older, our best advantage to keep up with the younger kids is our experience. We are to play (or work) smarter, not harder. What I don't seem to see as often is the incredible play fakes that you always used to see replayed during the mid-90s where the defense had no idea where the ball was. Maybe it is the playcalling, but I think Brett should use deception more often.
  5. cheesey

    cheesey Cheesehead

    Nov 24, 2005
    "Rascal scooter"......LOLOLOL!!!!
    Hey.......all atheletes hit the wall sooner or later. But i see that SO far, Favre still has the elusiveness that many QB's NEVER have. (Drew Bledsoe as an example) He still can give that little juke that freezes D linemen in their tracks, or leaves them grabbing for air. He also has the arm strength. Michael Jordan couldn't keep playing B-ball forever, and I know the day will come (sooner then later) that Favre won't be able to do what he has done for so long. It's just a fact of life in pro sports. But i STILL would take him over the majority of QB's in the NFL today.

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