By S.C. Zuba
Lots of things annoy me in sports.
Well, to be fair, lots of things annoy me in general. Traffic annoys me. Cats annoy me. Talking on the phone annoys me. People who don’t understand the concept of personal space annoy me.
I could go on and on and on and on—but I won’t.
Well, maybe just a little.
Bandwagon Blackhawks fans annoy me (even though I, too, am guilty). LeBron James annoys me. Seeing the video of James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade’s welcoming ceremony in Miami annoys me.
Carlos Zambrano annoys me. White Sox’s radio broadcaster Darrin “D.J.” Jackson annoys me. Most Cubs fans annoy me. ESPN’s NFL analyst Mark Schlereth’s biased reporting annoys me. Seriously, Mark, the Bears aren’t always bad. Lovie Smith’s inability to answer a question annoys me beyond belief.
As I said, many things annoy me. One person, however, transcends the annoyance of all other things and people in sports. He is on a separate level—one reserved for only the most obnoxious and appalling figures.
He is Brett Favre.
What a joke.
I’d rather sit in the bleachers at Wrigley Field and listen to a Cubs fan go on and on about how THIS is their year than listen to another report about Favre.
I’d rather go out to lunch with LeBron James and listen to him try to justify taking his talents to South Beach.
I’d rather watch a televised football game on the NFL Network.
I’d rather the Big Ten stick with their current division names of “Legends” and “Leaders.”
Heck, I’d even rather watch a Bears game with Schlereth in the booth and listen to him give me countless reasons about why the Bears are—and always will be—bad.
To be completely honest, there is nothing in sports that annoys me quite like Favre. I want him to go away. Please, go away. Please, don’t come back. Then, please don’t come back again. Then, please don’t come back again.
After Favre retired the first time, I respected him. It’s obvious he’s one of the game’s greatest and most durable quarterbacks of all-time. He’s broken every record (both good and bad), and there’s nothing left for him to accomplish on the football field.
So, why is he still taking the field?
What bothers me most about Favre is the way he handcuffs his teams during the offseason. Brett, if you’re going to play, show up to the meetings, show up to the camps, stop acting like a diva who is better than everyone else and just play the game of football.
Don’t make the Vikings send a private jet to pick you up. Don’t wait until three weeks before the season starts to make your decision to return.
But most of all, Brett, don’t lie to the entire sports world.
Favre did not break his streak of consecutive starts because of an injury. Don’t be fooled—not for one second.
Favre’s unprecedented record of 297 consecutive starts ended because of a public relations stunt. Favre and his people knew a suspension was likely coming from the league because of Favre’s violation of the NFL’s personal conduct policy, so they ended the streak before a suspension could.
It just makes sense. Favre’s streak would be forever tarnished if it ended because of the alleged exchanges between Favre and former Jets employee Jenn Sterger. So, he ended it before the league could.
What a joke. What a disgrace. What a “role model.”
Favre should have walked away as a Packer. That should have been it, no more, no less. He ruined his legacy, tarnished his public perception as a good ol’ hardworking country boy.
He’s a joke, and he annoys me.
In a world full of annoyances, Brett Favre wins every time.
Share your thoughts with S.C. Zuba via e-mail at email@example.com.
From the Dec. 29-Jan. 4, 2011 issue