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Packers fans will forgive Favre, but when will Rodgers?

by | CBSSports.com National Columnist

The speaker is a member of the Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers. He wanted to do something few in Green Bay would ever attempt in the post-title glow: He wanted to defend Brett Favre. Slightly.

The fact the player wants to remain anonymous says almost as much as the quotations themselves. Favre remains, partly, a radioactive isotope being ripped as petty for still not yet contacting (as far as we know) quarterback Aaron Rodgers to congratulate him for his Super Bowl victory.

Aaron Rodgers hasn't forgotten how Brett Favre treated him in Green Bay. (Getty Images)  
Aaron Rodgers hasn't forgotten how Brett Favre treated him in Green Bay. (Getty Images)  
"This is one of those situations where Brett can't win," the player said. "If he calls Aaron it looks like he's grandstanding. If he doesn't, he seems like he's selfish and inconsiderate.

"I can tell you Brett wants to speak to Aaron. He really does and it's sincere. I don't know if they've spoken yet. I just know Brett wants to bury the hatchet."


"No question. The big issue is will Aaron want to take the call. That I don't know. The bitterness remains deep."

Is it possible such a phone call between the two men has taken place and no knows about it?

"Possible," he said, "but unlikely."

Hence, this is the final question from a grand moment in NFL history, the Packers winning another Super Bowl title: Will Green Bay's past quarterback hero in Favre, and its current and future one in Rodgers, ever be able to make amends?

At some point their paths will have to intersect, right? Can you have two Green Bay legends hating one another?

In the coming months and years the Packers organization will forgive Favre's arrogance and text obsessions and welcome him back to the Packers fold. Green Bay fans will do the same. So that leaves Favre and Rodgers.

If Rodgers does what many of us have been predicting for years, and that is lead the next generation of great throwers, then his path and Favre's could cross often.

That is the message friends of both Rodgers and Favre have been sending both men for months, and even since the Super Bowl. But the bitterness remains strong, as does the suspicion.

Rodgers, again, has a right to be angry with Favre. Rodgers discussed why in an interview one year ago when he said he phoned Favre to reach out to him and Favre never called back. That is true jerkiness right there.

I'm told that when the subject of ending his cold war with Rodgers is raised with Favre, Favre eventually asks, "What does Aaron think?" And I'm told that when Rodgers is asked about reconciling with Favre, Rodgers eventually asks, "What does Brett think?" And so it goes.

No one wants to make the first move and as far as I can tell no one has. (Though shouldn't that be Favre?)

The impasse remains this simple little conundrum. Favre is concerned any attempt by him to reach out to Rodgers will be seen as manipulative, and Rodgers still hurts from the way Favre treated him when the two played together.

So the Packers are stuck. You have a storied franchise with two storied players who can't stand one another.

It's not necessary or required they settle any differences, but wouldn't it be nice?

This relationship isn't as strained as the worst relationship two star quarterbacks ever had in Joe Montana and Steve Young. Montana was highly critical of Young, publicly portraying Young as someone trying to steal his job. When Montana went to Kansas City and played his old team with Young at the helm the two men refused to shake hands before the game (and after).

They've since become acquaintances, though not friends. That may be the best the Packers will get with Favre and Rodgers.

One day Favre will be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but before that the Packers will retire his number. Just a matter of time. That relationship between the team and fans will be healed.

Will Favre and Rodgers one day reach a peace accord assuming they already secretly haven't?

That's the big question.


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