The Soul Sacrifice of Roland Martin

Live by the word and die by the word

CNN contributor Roland Martin makes his living off of words.  A few of them led to his suspension from the network and an uncertain future.

While most of the country was watching the Super Bowl, Martin was merrily tweeting away providing a running commentary of the game, the commercials and anything else that popped in his head he figured might amuse his thousands of Twitter followers.

Soccer star David Beckham’s commercial with him stripped down to his skivvies appeared and next came the words that croaked Martin at CNN.

“If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham’s H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him!”

If all hell didn’t break loose a small enough piece did and with it the gay activist group, GLAAD, ripped Martin for encouraging anti-gay violence and demanded CNN fire him.   Martin later issued an apology, but with his standard sarcasm dripping from it.

“Let me address the issue that some in the LGBT community have raised regarding some of my Super Bowl tweets yesterday,” he wrote. “I made several cracks about soccer as I do all the time. I was not referring to sexuality directly or indirectly regarding the David Beckham ad, and I’m sorry folks took it otherwise.”

Roland Martin's troublesome Tweet

Got that LGBT community?   It’s not me, it’s you.   As an apology it was inadequate.   As far as saving Martin’s job with CNN, it was insufficient.

CNN suspended Martin indefinitely and issued a statement “Roland Martin’s tweets were regrettable and offensive.  Language that demeans is inconsistent with the values and culture of our organization, and is not tolerated. We have been giving careful consideration to this matter, and Roland will not be appearing on our air for the time being.”

Roland Martin is an experienced journalist and he knows journalists have to be accountable for their words.   He is also a Black man with a high-profile gig and there’s a hot spotlight on him.  He shouldn’t overshare on Twitter and while what he said was silly and sophomoric, I don’t think it was vicious or homophobic.

GLAAD did and they pounced.   They could have seen Martin’s remarks as a teaching moment opportunity to point out how words can be hurtful and homophobic speech creeps out when we least suspect it.

Nuh-uh.  That’s not how GLAAD rolls.  They’re in the business of collecting hides, not educating minds.  They howled for Martin’s head and CNN served it up on a silver platter (but not conservative commentator Dana Loesch who said she’d happily piss on dead Afghanis as U.S. troops have done).  The takeaway here is White gays have a stronger lobby than dead Afghanis.

GLAAD fires back at Martin.

I can’t say I know Roland Martin, but I’ve met him and sparred with him over other issues. Martin is passionate, articulate, smart and he fights for what he believes in. He is also caustic, patronizing, overbearing, and occasionally nasty.  Martin can be pleasant and charming when he wants, but get on his bad side (and it doesn’t take much to get there) and bring your lunch for an all day fight.

I don’t think Roland should be fired for his Tweets. He should be educated and learn how homophobia hurts. This is the proverbial “teaching moment” and rather than hang Mr. Martin out to dry,  GLAAD and other gay activists missed an opportunity to show Martin and the Black community that discrimination and insensitive speech is unacceptable no matter who does it.

Martin should have known as a Black man in a prominent position, the spotlight is always on and with social media you’re ALWAYS “on the record.”  I have never understood why some people can’t go to the john without reporting the details on Twitter, but some folks find these details riveting reading.

But there is a double standard here where a CNN conservative commentator can say she would piss on dead Afghanis and she isn’t suspended, but Rick Sanchez is fired for making insensitive remarks about Jews and Martin is suspended for offending gays.   Apparently, CNN is selective about what kind of speech crosses the line depending on what group is demeaned.

Martin objects to homosexuality based upon his religious upbringing and his 2006 article references how his wife ministers to gays to change their orientation.  I think that kind of ministering is crap, but I also recognize Martin and his wife believe the same way as other Black folks do.  That does not make it right. It does make it a reality.

Mr. Martin is no friend of mine. I don’t even much like the guy, but I do think he has the right to free speech. His employers at CNN have the right to hold him responsible for that speech–as long as everyone else is being held to that same standard and that is not the case.

Martin’s discriminatory words are being matched and trumped by GLAAD’s hectoring and CNN’s cave-in to a pressure group.   He was served up as a soul sacrifice on a silver platter to the altar of political correctness gone berserk.

Freedom of speech does not men freedom from taking responsibility for that speech.  Martin will have to do the same as Tracy Morgan, Mel Gibson, Michael Richards and everyone else who words have done a drive-by past their brain.  Martin is a man of strongly held and expressed opinion and sometimes those opinions come back to bite where it smarts.   I’m sure he will emerge from this externally chastised and internally unbowed.

The takeaway from this is other oppressed groups have learned well the tactics of Blacks during the Civil Rights era of protest and how to seize, hold the moral high ground and slap down the oppressor.  They have learned it so well they have turned the tables on the once oppressed whom they now consider are oppressing them.

This must be what they mean by poetic justice.

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What If They Played A Super Bowl and Nobody Cared?

Super Bowl Roman numeral what the hell ever.

Hey hey, hey! It’s Super Bowl Sunday!  The national holiday where you can eat too much, drink too much, hang out with friends, family and total strangers and overindulge while you settle back to watch what is billed as the greatest game of they year and more times than not turns out to be a pretty boring football games featuring the favorite teams of somebody else.

Two weeks ago, I suffered through my 49ers literally fumbling away their opportunity to punch their ticket to Indianapolis and win the right to square off against Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots.   Alas, Kyle “Butterfingers and Bad Knees” Williams literally couldn’t get out of his own way so the Niners are home and it’s the more lucky-than-good New York Giants would will square off against Captain America and the Mad Genius.

If I was a gracious loser and a good sport, I would say I wish both the Patriots and the Giants all the best and that they play a good, clean game, have fun, and may the better team emerge victorious.

Like HELL!

I would say that if I were a gracious loser and a good sport, but since I hate losing and I’m a bad sport, I will say I don’t give a rat’s ass which one of these teams wins or loses and I’m more interested in the commercial and whether Madonna will have a “wardrobe malfunction” and flash a 53-year-old boob during the halftime show.

The Material Mommy limbers up for The Big Game.

The horror…the horror…

Okay. That’s not true. Nobody wants to see the Material Mommy’s mammaries. However, I am more interested in the commercials than I give a rat’s ass about who wins the game.

If my Niners can’t win, I’m hoping the game ends in a 0-0 tie.  That would be fun.  It’s sort of liberating to have no rooting interest and not have to care who wins or loses.   As far as I’m concerned, I’m more interested in collecting my fantasy football winnings than I am what terrible medley of songs Madonna wheezes through or how Brady and Eli Manning are playing.

It’s not that I’m a sore loser as much as i am a disinterested spectator.   I’ll be at a buddy’s crib with a bunch of the fellas drinking a few beers, eating more chips and chicken wings than I should and hoping against hope the game isn’t breathtakingly boring and the commercials aren’t as forgettable as all the commercials from last year I’ve forgotten about now.

I might even watch some of the halftime if for no other reason than to watch Madonna power lift a few of her dancers or rip a football in half or something.

Just be ready to hustle granny and the kids out of the room if Justin Timberlake shows up.

Having a miserable time. Glad you're not here.

Dreaming Out of Season

One bad play does not a season make. But two...?

The ultimate high in the surprising 2011 San Francisco 49ers season came when QB Alex Smith threw a precisely timed pass to TE Vernon Davis for the winning touchdown with seconds left to beat the Saints was dubbed by the 49er faithful as “The Grab.”  It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon in ancient Candlestick Park with sunshine, clear skies and a warm, pleasant light growing in the hearts of every long-suffering fan.

The rainy, foggy and cold Sunday where two critical mistakes by a stand-in punt returner brought an ignoble finish to the season will live in 49ers history as “The Fumbles.”

It took me a few days to swallow the disappointment of the 49ers losing to the Giants 20-17 in overtime, but I’ve digested it now. The Giants deserve to go to the Super Bowl. They made the plays and caught the breaks. The 49ers didn’t and that’s why their season is over.

Now let’s talk about Kyle Williams, the guy who lost the two fumbles that cost the 49ers dearly. The player who so enraged some idiots they rushed to Twitter to make threats on his life.

After the game, my wife asked me if the Niners would cut Williams loose. I replied, “No, they won’t and no, they shouldn’t.”

“It was just one of those situations where I caught the ball, tried to head upfield, tried to make a play and it ended up for the worse,” Williams said.


W
illiams will forever be known and reviled as the goat who cost the 49ers a trip to the Super Bowl. In part that is true and that is something Williams, a second year player from Stanford, will have to own for some time. But football is a team sport and the 49ers lost that game as a team. One or two plays can dramatically alter the outcome of a game but a loss can be attributed to an entire 60 minutes worth of poor execution.

The 49ers offense converted only 1 out of 13 third downs. That’s terrible.

The 49ers wide receivers combined for one catch for three yards in five quarters and almost four hours of football. That’s worse that terrible.  That’s pathetic.

Hero one day, goat the next. Welcome to the NFL, Kyle Williams

QB Alex Smith, who looked like a stud in the previous week’s shoot-out with the Saints looked pretty ordinary against the G-men. His two touchdown passes to TE Vernon Davis were things of beauty, but as Greg Cosell in his NFL Flims blog called out Smith for his “tentative and uncertain pocket play. “

Cosell said, “Smith was reluctant to let it loose on routes and throws that were not only well designed, but were open…One of the attributes that separates high level quarterback play in big games and critical moments is the willingness to make stick throws into smaller windows. Smith did that with confidence against the Saints. In the NFC Championship game, he was hesitant and cautious on throws that were clearly defined.  Simply put, Smith left a lot of plays on the field against the Giants. While Williams publicly shouldered the burden of defeat, it was his quarterback who failed to deliver on the promise he had shown a week earlier.”

In this season where a franchise that had once been the NFL’s Gold Standard of a successful football organization on and off the field, made an unexpected return to glory, no player benefited more from the coaching of Jim Harbaugh than Alex Smith. The former overall Number One pick looked destined to be a bust. Under the tutelage of Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Greg Roman, they made Smith an effective game manager who didn’t throw interceptions and didn’t make the critical mistake at the critical time.

Against the Saints, Smith proved he could not only manage a game, but with his feet and his arm, he could make crucial plays and win games as well. Smith didn’t throw any interceptions against the Giants, but he couldn’t get the 49ers in the end zone either when they needed to. Smith played it safe and the difference between his lack of comfort with his wide receivers and Eli Manning’s confidence with his group is like that between night and day.

I really believe Kyle Williams will make plays for the 49ers as he learns how to play the position. During the season Williams caught 20 passes for 211 yards and three td’s . Those aren’t flashy numbers, but Williams is fast and can stretch a defense vertically. I have no doubt as a slot receiver and in a four receiver package, Williams will eventually shine.

With this depressing loss the Niners become just another one out of 30 teams not good enough to get to the Super Bowl  with deficiencies and have needs that must be met.

No position needs upgrading more than wide receiver for the 49ers. Michael Crabtree, the first round pick three years ago is a solid Number Two receiver. He lacks the speed or big grab ability to be a consistent Number One. There will be free agent talent available that meets that need. Vincent Jackson, Dwayne Bowe, Marcus Colston, and DeSean Jackson may be available if the Niners want to bid for their services.

The Niners may not have the bank available to sign a big name free agent. They have several free agents of their own they need to resign including Smith. They may have to look past the premier group of receivers for some gems remaining after the initial buying spree or trade up in the NFL Draft hoping to grab a young and speedy receiver.

I like the place the 49ers are in going in to the off-season. After their first playoff appearance since 2003, they have holes to plug, but this year it’s going to be about adding talent, not blowing up the roster and starting over.

“Everyone in here told me to keep my head up, it’s not on me,” Williams said. “You hate to be the last guy that had the ball, to give it up in that fashion and lose a game of this magnitude. It is what it is. We’re going to move forward as a team. I couldn’t be happier with the teammates I have in here.”

I agree. For far too long after the 16th game the typical Niner fan had to sigh in disappointment and disgust, “Well, there’s always next season.” This year we can say “I can’t wait for next season.” Our Super Bowl dreams are merely delayed, not deferred.   We’re dreaming out of season.

At the risk of echoing Sarah Palin, the San Francisco 49ers don’t need to rebuild.  They need to reload.

Who's got it better than us? Well, there's the Giants...

Saving the Best for Last: The 49ers Shock the Saints

"I am a 49er. Hear me roar!"

The hero of the day in the San Francisco 49ers victory over the New Orleans Saints was tight end Vernon Davis who caught the game winning score from much maligned quarterback Alex Smith.  The 36-32 downing of the high-octane Saints gave the 49ers their first playoff win in nine years and punched their ticket for an appearance in the NFC Championship.

Head coach Jim Harbaugh and the front office deserve all the credit for making the 49ers this year’s most unlikely Super Bowl contender.  Some credit should go to Mike Singletary, the man Harbaugh replaced for being responsible for getting Davis to drop the diva act and tap into his incredible potential.

For a while Davis looked to be just another in long list of first round failures for the Niners.  Nobody questioned if Davis had the talent.  The question was whether he would ever pull his head out of his ass and tap into it..  Singletary was not a good coach.  What he was was an excellent motivator.  Davis was motivated by Singletary and Harbaugh coached him up.

While Smith-to-Davis isn’t a moment as iconic as Montana-to-Clark, give them time.  They had to endure a lot of crap to get to this moment of glory.

My wife and I are 49ers fans going back to “The Catch” which occurred 30 years ago this weekend.

Today we witnessed “The Catch II” or “The Grab” as some have dubbed Smith’s TD pass to Davis. Whatever the hell you want to call it after nearly nine years or wandering in the NFL wilderness, it feels really good to return to being a relevant team again..

I respect the Saints and I’m not going to lie: I expected them to win.  I felt the Niners had a chance to throw some blows and go toe-to-toe with the Saints’ explosive offense.  Drew Brees is crazy good, but I also thought if the Niners had to deal with the Saints, that was fine.  They had to deal with us too.

If this had been in the Superdome, I’m not sure the Niners would have won.  They worked hard to secure that home field advantage over the Saints and it paid off in full.

The cherry on top is how satisfying it is that this the Saints/49ers was merely supposed to be the opening act for the main event of Tom Brady vs. Tim “Touched By An Angel.”  Tebow in primetime.   Nobody pimped this game harder than ESPN. They have been riding Tebow’s dick even more than they were Brett Favre.  I didn’t think that was possible, but ESPN’s saturation coverage and endless hero worship proved it was.

Joke’s on you, ESPN.  There was only one football game that was Must See TV and it wasn’t in Foxboro.  Brady demolished Denver and sent Tebow packing until he can plan his resurrection next September.

I have nothing against Tim Tebow personally.  He seems like an earnest young man who loves playing football and giving the glory to Jesus Christ, but I watch football because I enjoy the sport.  I don’t want anyone’s religious beliefs up in my face.

Anyone remember Reggie White? He was religious, very conservative and after the game he would gather with players from both teams and pray. But White didn’t make a show of his faith. Tebow does and that’s annoying as hell.

It only took seven years for Alex Smith to get San Francisco to fall in love with him.

Oh yeah, one more thing. Reggie White was one of the greatest of all time at his position and a Hall of Famer. The only way Tebow gets in the Hall of Fame is if he waits in line and buys a ticket.

Enough about losers that are not longer relevant.  The Niners are moving on and the Saints and Broncos are cleaning out their lockers.  For the past nine years it’s been the other way around.   I don’t know who the Niners will match up against next Sunday, but I know they’re playing and that is something I haven’t been able to say since they were rolling up Super Bowl wins.

These 49ers are not the 49ers teams of Montana and Young.  They lean on playing stout defense, capitalizing on the other team’s mistakes while minimizing their own turnovers.   Frank Gore pounding the rock between the tackles is how Harbaugh prefers it instead of Alex Smith strafing secondaries with his arm.   It’s not glamorous and it sure ain’t sexy.  Sometimes it’s even a little bit boring.

But it’s damn efficient even if it runs counter to how the Packers, Patriots and the Saints do things.  Those teams were supposed to be contending for a Super Bowl ring.  The 49ers were supposed to be happy if they finished with a .500 record.  Nobody could have predicted this kind of success and nobody did.

Anyone who tell you they saw it coming is lying their ass off.

Standing On the Verge of the Super Bowl

A little ground and pound never hurt nobody.

…and then there were three.

Nope, I’m not talking about a Genesis album (though there is one playing as I type this).   There’s three games left in the 2010 NFL season.   The two conference championships between the Packers vs. Bears and the Jets vs. Steelers followed by the Super Bowl.   Notice I did not include the Pro Bowl that occurs between the championships and the Super Bowl.   Nobody cares about the Pro Bowl.

I’m hoping these will be some good games this  Sunday.   They could be the last we will be seeing for a while.

On the horizon is the great possibility of a lockout of the players by the owners in there’s not a new collective bargaining agreement in place by March 4.    Both the owners and the players union are dug in to their respective positions and playing the blame game.   There are no negotiations going on between the two sides.

I won’t get into the specifics because frankly I don’t much care.   There are a series of articles on the National Football Post that explains the reasons for the conflict in great detail.    For my part,   I am not choosing between the players and the owners.   I do not know which side is right or wrong.    I just want my NFL football next fall.

How I get it and who the winners and losers are is irrelevant to me.    When I’m sitting in front of my TV with a cold beverage in one hand and the remote in the other I just want to be able to kick back and chill for three hours.    Millionaires fighting with billionaires over money doesn’t hold my interest.

Some other thoughts standing on the verge of the Super Bowl:

  • It was the same old song and dance for the Winbush brothers as all three of our teams, the Browns (5-11) , 49ers (6-10) and the Raiders (8-8) finished the season in their usual positions:  out of the playoffs.   All three teams shit-canned their crappy coaches and will enter 2011 with new leadership and  high hopes for a return to respectability.     IF there is a 2011 season.
  • With the 49ers in their usual post-season place (watching from the cheap seats like everyone else), I have no rooting interest in who ends up in the Super Bowl.    I’m a little sick of the Steelers, but I find them a bit less annoying than the Jets.    No team in the league swaggers more than the Jets and has accomplished less.    So they beat Peyton Manning and Tom Brady in respective weeks.   Good for them.   After all the mad shit they talked leading up to the Patriots game last week it would have been an embarrassment if they had lost.  Fortunately, they did not and spared me the annoyance of the “Bill Belichick is a super genius and Tom Brady is Jesus” storyline.   Tired of it and don’t wanna hear it anymore.
  • Speaking of Brady, Belichick and the Patriots, what profits a team to go 14-2 during the regular season (with one of those losses being served up by the lowly Browns) only to get punked in their first game of the playoffs.     The Hoodie had two weeks to work his magic against the Jets, a team they had smoked 45-3 back in December.   If I were a Patriots fan I’d have to ask myself, “What in the hell is going on here?”
  • I have beau coup respect for Brady as one of the NFL’s élite quarterbacks, but I cannot stand the way the league protects him from a defensive player even looking at him cross-eyed.    One of the worst moments of the season came when Brady whined to the officials and they threw a penalty flag on the Ravens due to his goading.   Mike Freeman of CBS Sports wrote a column that nailed how protecting Brady goes beyond the five big boys on his offensive line:

It was October of last year in Foxborough. The Patriots and Baltimore Ravens were playing in one of the more-hard fought games of the year. In it, Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was pummeled repeatedly, by my count, a minimum of five times. The last hit on Flacco led to a roughing penalty.

Brady was hit only twice and both times the Ravens were called for roughing the passer. One hit was borderline and the other looked legal. The penalties called on Baltimore were key because they extended both drives and led to Patriots scores.

This is the interesting part. On one of the Brady hits a game official was standing almost directly next to Brady. He watched the hit. The official did nothing … until Brady angrily expressed his displeasure to the official.

Brady claimed the hit was a penalty and then about one second after he complained the official threw the flag. I wouldn’t have believed it had I not witnessed the scene with my own two eyes. It looked clearly as if Brady’s complaining had influenced the call.

The Ravens were generally incensed over the two calls and, later specifically how Brady basically goaded the official into throwing a flag.

“Without totally going off the wall here, it is embarrassing to the game,” Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis said afterward. “Brady is good enough to make his own plays, let him make the play. When you have two great teams that are going at it, let them go at it. Both of their touchdown drives had personal fouls that kept drives alive. Did that win or lose the game? No, but it got them 14 points.”

 

"Hey ref! HE'S TOUCHING ME!!! Doesn't he know I'm Tom Brady?"

 

  • Hard hits are part of the game and when you take the hitting out of it it’s just flag football.    Network executives and the fans pay big money to watch Tom Brady vs. Payton Manning, not their scrub backups,  Brian Hoyer vs. Curtis Painter.   I get that you can’t demand the big money for scrubs, but it’s getting so even knocking a quarterback down is going to get the laundry flying.   It’s not football anymore when it gets to that point.
  • I think it was a good season, but not a great one.   I saw a few exciting games, but a lot of boring ones plagued by risk-free play-calling and unimaginative offense.   Then again, I am a 49ers fan, so I should be used to that kind of thing.   The most fun game was the Browns vs. Saints game with the Brownies pulling out all the stops with trick plays and fake punts.   It was absolutely nuts, but hell, when you’re a bad football team like the Browns, do you have to be boring too?   No you do not, and if more coaches would unclench and take the leash off their players, the NFL would be a lot more exciting than it is.   Too many running plays up the middle for three yards may be safe, but it is boring as fuck to sit there and watch.

The day of the Super Bowl has become an unofficial national holiday.   President Obama says he’ll be there in Dallas to watch his beloved Bears if they beat the Packers this Sunday (sorry Mr. President, but I don’t think they will).   I’m taking the day off and plan on being armed with plenty of food and drink as I settle in to watch  a lot of  expensive commercials, an over-hyped game, and typically a putrid halftime show.  Prince dancing in high heels and playing an electric guitar in the rain was one of the best performances in recent memory while last year’s appearance by what’s left of The Who was god-awful as the two original members who haven’t dropped dead yet wheezed through a sorry-ass show.

Not that I’m expecting this year’s act , the overexposed/under talented Black Eyed Peas to be any better.   Hoping for the best.  Preparing for the worst.

Way too old to rock n' roll.

The Unhappy Ending.

"Argh! Urgh! Oh, the agony! Gimme a bullet to bite on..."

As storylines go, the Favre fairy tale has been great for the NFL as his iconic stature elevates him far above any other player.  He  holds enough records to swagger right into the Hall of Fame as soon as he’s eligible.  IF he ever retires.

The problem is the ending Favre seems to have envisioned for himself:  Another Super Bowl victory with him being raised upon the shoulders of his teammates in triumph and  his legacy as the greatest quarterback ever to play in the game  established beyond doubt keeps getting interrupted by his own awful playoff performances.

Whether or not he comes back again, can we finally face the undisputed truth that Brett Favre is the most overrated and overhyped professional athlete in the history of sports?   When the game is biggest, Favre plays small.   When it matters most, Favre saves his worst for last.

You can’t take away from Favre the great regular season he had in a Vikings uniform.    After one lousy year with the New York Jets, Favre unretired and rebounded in fine style throwing 33 touchdowns against only seven interceptions during the regular season.

Which is great if you had Favre in your fantasy football pool.  After slicing and dicing the Dallas Cowgirls for four TDs  in the second round of the playoffs, Roger Goodell was fantasizing of a Favre vs. Manning match-up pitting the Jedi Master against the younger upstart making a strong bid to prove he, not Favre, is the One.   Alas, this scenario was vaporized by Favre’s reckless ramblin’ gamblin’ ways.   This all has to look very familiar to jilted Packer fans.

Favre’s  shabby 3-8 playoff record over the last decade what makes Favre only a very good quarterback instead of one of the all time greatest.

Here’s a guy who is a choke artist but benefited from a greater  hype-to-production ration than any other professional athlete living.  After 19 seasons he still has as many Super Bowl wins as Trent Dlifer, Brad Johnson and Jeff Hostettler: ONE.   Favre owns a ton of records from his years of hanging around the league (The Vikings being his fourth team) but so what it he’s thrown for more touchdowns than anyone else.  He’s also thrown more interceptions than anyone else and usually in the biggest games.

Favre’s last three playoff games have all ended exactly the same way: Eagles: interception. Giants: interception. Saints: interception. See a trend here?   His only Super Bowl win came 13 years ago.  You would think someone so great wouldn’t take so long to get another one.

Already the apologists are blaming Vikings coach Brad Childress for a 12-men on the field penalty following a time-out and superstar running back Adrian Peterson fumbling on the 4-yard line in the first quarter.  Both were dumb mistakes, but Favre’s was the killer.

Any kid who hopes to play on Sundays for big cash,  learns early never to throw the ball across your body and late over the middle.   Not in pee-wee football.   Not in high school.  Not in college.   Not in the NFL.   Not ever.

Yet there’s Favre, almost two decades in the league with the same piss-poor mechanics and throwing some of the worst interceptions ever seen at critical moments.

"Should I stay or should I go? Should I go or should I stay? Decisions...decisions."

Favre is good enough to get a team close enough to see the mountaintop, but not good enough to actually scale it.

In 2008, ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio was one of the rare sportswriters to say the emperor wore no clothes and blasted holes in the myth of Favre as  football messiah saying, “…no matter how many dumb passes he threw and how many playoff games he lost, Favre remains immune to criticism.”

Indeed, a decade after his last moments of glory, the football hype machine continues to paint Favre as a hallowed icon of Americana, a symbol of all that is right with sports, a Wild West gun-slinging good ol’ boy. There’s Brett on the farm! There’s Brett with his family! There’s Brett on the cover of Sports Illustrated! There’s Brett throwing another overtime interception!

Favre was among the best in the game, once upon a time. Those days are long gone. Only the idolatry remains.

There’s no buyer’s remorse by the Vikings on the decision to sign Favre.  It was the smart move.   He made them interesting and except for one brain-dead throw, stood on the verge of taking the team all the way to the Super Bowl.

It was a great run.  A compelling storyline.  Favre was getting beaten up by the Saints pass rush.  He dragged himself off the field and dragged himself back on the field limping and grimacing in pain.  Gritty Brett will not let his team down.  Hollywood couldn’t have written a better, if somewhat corny, script.

But Brett screwed the pooch and blew it all.  That’s Brett being Brett.   That’s what he does.