Vikings’ Favre plans to play if healthy (AP)

Aug 4th, 2010 | By sportsnews | Category: Sports

MANKATO, Minnesota (AP)—Brett Favre(notes) might play this season after all, with
officials saying the quarterback plans to return for the Minnesota Vikings if
his surgically repaired ankle allows it.

Vikings offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and Favre’s agent, Bus Cook,
both said Wednesday that the veteran quarterback plans to play if he is healthy.
He had surgery on the ankle in May.

Bevell has been close friends with Favre since he was his quarterbacks coach
with the Green Bay Packers.

“I know it’s a decision that he wrestles with,” Bevell said after
Wednesday morning’s practice as Favre was throwing the ball around with high
school students in Mississippi. “He’s a great player. He’s a great competitor.
He mulls things over. He’s an emotional guy. So he thinks things through long
and hard and takes his time with his decision. So I’m not surprised that things
started to come out. We just have to wait and see.”

Bevell said he has spoken to the 40-year-old quarterback recently, but not
in the last 24 hours. He said it’s been his understanding that if Favre’s ankle
heals well enough, he will return to play for the Vikings this season.

“That’s what I’ve been getting all along,” Bevell said.

Cook said Favre will visit his surgeon, Dr. James Andrews, next week for an
evaluation.

“He’s working out really hard and everything seems to indicate that if he
is healthy and can contribute and play at the level that he has become
accustomed to, he will play,” Cook said.

The two-year contract Favre signed last year calls for him to make $13
million this season and Cook said he has not begun negotiations on any
adjustments to the contract.

Outside Oak Grove High School in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Favre told
reporters his decision is “not about the money.” He also said he has been in
touch with the team and “they know what’s going on with me.”

On Tuesday, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated
Press that Favre had contacted teammates and team officials to tell them his
ankle was not healing and that he wasn’t going to return for a second season in
Minnesota. Tight end Visanthe Shiancoe(notes) confirmed the report, saying Favre “told
a couple guys on our team he’s going to retire.”

Shiancoe said Wednesday he still had not heard from Favre directly and
declined further comment.

Like the rest of the league, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said he was
taking a “wait and hear” approach to the latest twist in the Favre saga.

“Brett Favre is great for our game. And I think the passion he has for the
game is extraordinary,” he said. “I think we all love to see him play, but we
want him to do what’s best for him at the end of the day.”

Favre has considered retiring every summer since 2002. It led to an ugly
parting with the Packers that got him traded from Green Bay to the Jets in 2008.
After a so-so season in New York, he announced his retirement in early 2009 for
the second time, then reconsidered and signed with the Vikings.

He had one of his best seasons last year, with career bests in completion
percentage (68.4), quarterback rating (107.2) and fewest interceptions (7),
while throwing for 33 TDs and 4,202 yards to lead the Vikings (12-4) to an NFC
North title. He hurt his left ankle in the NFC championship loss to the New
Orleans Saints
and had arthroscopic surgery in May.

“He is an emotional guy. He does tell you how he’s feeling. He is very
honest,” Bevell said. “That’s what I love about him and that’s what a lot of
people love about him. Sometimes it serves him well, sometimes it doesn’t.”

AP Sports Writer Howard Fendrich in Washington and AP freelancer Tyler
Cleveland in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, contributed to this report.

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