When Brett Favre Picked a New Team Just to Torment Aaron Rodgers' Packers

May 03, 2019 - 3:23 pm

Picture this: Tom Brady coming out of retirement with the Buffalo Bills and gleefully slinging touchdown passes on a Sunday afternoon visit to face the New England Patriots in Foxboro. 

Or Ben Roethlisberger making a point of having a second act with the Baltimore Ravens. Eli Manning taking the Philadelphia Eagles to the playoffs. 

If it sounds outlandish, rewind just 10 years to 2009, when legendary Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre, after his second "retirement" and dramatic un-retirement, signed with the Minnesota Vikings. 

Favre was motivated by "his burning desire to join a Packers division rival for some cold-blooded revenge," as chronicled in the first season of the "SportsWars" podcast, available on the RADIO.COM app, which covers the contentious relationship between Favre and his replacement in Green Bay, Aaron Rodgers.

The six-episode debut season covers each player's rise to NFL stardom, their uneasy coexistence with the Packers and their eventual truce. 

Episode 6 focuses on the 2009 season and its aftermath. Favre played for the New York Jets in 2008, but the Packers weren't on the schedule. In Week 4 in 2009, in his first meeting against his former team, Favre's Vikings beat Rodgers' Packers, 30-23, on Monday Night Football.

But even more of a spectacle was the Vikings' Week 8 trip to Lambeau Field. "SportsWars" recounts a mock funeral staged for Favre in Green Bay with three hearses, "one to carry Brett's body, one to carry Brett's ego, and one to carry Brett away from here." Then the 40-year-old Favre proceeded to throw four touchdown passes to Rodgers' three in a 38-26 victory.

Both quarterbacks led their teams to the playoffs. The Packers were knocked out in the first round; Favre brought the Vikings to the brink of the Super Bowl before throwing a back-breaking late interception in the conference title game against the New Orleans Saints.

By 2010, Favre and Rodgers had changed roles for good. Favre was humiliated by a sexual harassment scandal and had his streak of 321 straight starts come to an end. Rodgers' Packers thrashed the Vikings, 31-3, in Week 11 en route to winning the Super Bowl. Rodgers captured his first MVP award the following season.

Season 2 of "SportsWars," featuring the iconic tennis rivalry between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, debuts later this month.