Look Brett. Can I call you Brett? I hope so because it is kind of impossible for you to answer me.
Brett, I’m writing to you out of concern. Concern for your lack of sense in coming back. It seems as though you are lost and need some guidance. I, an avid sports fan and someone who has seen a good deal of transcendent athletes come back to not-so-spectacular results can provide you with that needed help. I watched Michael Jordan get outplayed by Larry Hughes. It hurts everyone.
I get why you came back to play…again. Really, I do. You want to keep playing because you feel as though your body is healthy enough to not only play but succeed and excel.
You think that you are as hungry as those kids straight out of college with nothing to their names and certainly no rings on their fingers.
You believe that you can still walk into a stadium and capture the attention of 80,000 screaming fans and do that little circle celebration after every touchdown you throw with the crowd chanting your name. And you know you would not be making $25 million as a farmer in Mississippi.
But there is a time for everything and it is not time for you to come back. There will never be an appropriate time for you to come back to the NFL. Your glory days have passed, and you are not the same quarterback you once were.
You are not even half of the quarterback you once were. You are probably in the neighborhood of 3/10. That is about the level of Gus Frerotte.
In a million years, did you think your quarterbacking skills would one day be compared to Gus Frerotte? It is happening right now.
Have you not done enough to two franchises? The Jets were so destroyed by your presence they had to fire their head coach after two winning seasons in the last three years, move up in the draft to get a stud quarterback prospect and were then forced to release you after they had erroneously believed you were sticking around. And of course, you cried at the retirement press conference. Like a little girl.
The Packers not only had to watch you throw away games (and on behalf of Eagles fans everywhere, thanks for that 2003 playoff game!) for three to four years past your prime, you strung them along every year until you actually did retire and, of course, cried at your press conference.
If they had an Academy Awards for press conferences, you would be like Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson combined into one person.
Now you sign with the Vikings? Is it just to spite those Packers who loved you for the better part of 15 years? Or to force Vikings to root for the very person they hated and despised for that same amount of time? It is probably worse than if Tom Brady suddenly signs on to the Giants or Jets after Bill Belichick casts him out of the team.
An unfortunate but entirely realistic possibility I do not want to think about too much for fear that it will actually happen.
And of course, the Vikings had to court you for what seems like forever now. You told them no in July and then suddenly back track once training camp is over.
So now you are an out of shape quarterback who also wants all the media attention? I am sure you are a darling in the Vikings locker room.
Frankly, you have been spoiled, Brett. You watch crybabies like Jay Cutler swapping teams because he was mentioned in trade talks and Michael Vick come back from jail time because of dog fighting to play for a team (and possibly get paid $5.6 million next year) and you think, hey, I am a pretty good guy who has never watched two dogs brutally attack each other while betting on the results, I can play again.
Speaking of the media, this saga is not going to endear you to any fans. People love the NFL partly because it is a team sport. The fact that you have monopolized coverage and basically relegated every team to just a mention in the middle of the hour probably pisses off a good contingent of fans.
Do we really need to know what your surgeon is doing or not doing and his evaluation of your arm? Do we really need to tell the media that you may or may not play?
I doubt Chris Mortenson has reliable sources in Mississippi. Again, I cannot speak from experience because my favorite team is the Eagles and I have probably watched 40924352 hours about Michael Vick and his redemption story. Did you know he cried “many” nights in prison? Well, now you do.
Brett, just think of all the things you could be doing if you were not about to play right now. You could be the token over-the-hill quarterback on a five-man announcing team who is hesitant to criticize anyone but quick to defend any friends and never make any definitive statements. You could even follow in the path of greats like Jimmy Johnson and Terry Bradshaw and gain a few pounds and be another one of those guys that loses it all by taking some diet supplement. The possibilities are endless, and frankly, better than what you are about to do.
But you are going to play and I do not have the heart to wish physical injury upon you or to hope that you are suddenly stricken by some illness that prevents you from playing football. That would be cruel and unusual and I am neither.
Of course, if you were to suffer a minor injury in one week and Sage Rosenfels comes in and suddenly turns into a Pro Bowl quarterback and management does not feel the need for you to come back I would not be particularly upset.
Or if you decide to throw 10 touchdowns and 35 interceptions en route to the statistically worst season in NFL history. Both possibilities are acceptable to me.
Brett, I know you may never read this, but I just ask one more thing of you. If the Eagles eventually call, just say no. They have enough trouble at quarterback already without you on there. And if I had to root for you and Michael Vick…it hurts just to think about that.
A concerned fan