NFL | Vikings sign Brett Favre to 2-year, $25 million contract
Hundreds of fans flocked to the Minnesota Vikings' practice complex Tuesday, awaiting his arrival. Satellite trucks and cameras were across...
MINNEAPOLIS — Hundreds of fans flocked to the Minnesota Vikings' practice complex Tuesday, awaiting his arrival. Satellite trucks and cameras were across the street from Winter Park. Security was stationed in the parking lot and on the roof. A helicopter hovered.
Brett Favre was a Viking.
The 39-year-old quarterback signed a two-year, $25 million contract that includes $12 million guaranteed this season.
Coach Brad Childress ended a summer of anticipation when he drove into the parking lot, with Favre in the passenger seat. An Eden Prairie police officer tried to maintain control. It was of little use.
Three weeks after the three-time league most valuable player told Childress he had decided to remain retired — and nearly four months after Favre-to-the-Vikings talk began — the player some consider to be the final piece to making the team a Super Bowl contender was on board.
Favre, a villain to many Minnesota fans during his 16 seasons in Green Bay, seems to be a conquering hero to all those craving No. 4 purple jerseys. Slightly more than an hour after his arrival, Favre was on the practice field. He played for the New York Jets last season — after ending what he said was retirement — and had surgery on the biceps tendon in his throwing (right) arm in May.
At a news conference, Favre said, "All I want to do is win. That's all I came back for, is to win. There's nothing like it. For guys who have played this game, and sports in general, former players, guys in the latter part of their careers, they'll tell you it's tough. There's no substitute for playing on Sundays."
Childress, entering the fourth season of a five-year contract, is in a similar boat when it comes to craving victories. The Vikings have improved from 6-10 to 8-8 to 10-6 in Childress' first three seasons and last season won the NFC North before bowing out with a first-round playoff loss to Philadelphia. But Childress' teams have seldom been set at quarterback.
Favre found out after his May surgery he had a tear in his rotator cuff, but was told by noted surgeon James Andrews he should be able to play.
Favre is expected to play in the Vikings' exhibition home opener against Kansas City on Friday.
When the Jets released Favre from their reserve/retired list in late April, rumors began to swirl he was headed to the Vikings. The Vikings had been Favre's top choice last summer, but the Green Bay Packers weren't going to allow that to happen. It became more than rumors when the Vikings confirmed interest in Favre.
Favre, who holds numerous league passing records, surprised many with his decision to remain at home in Hattiesburg, Miss. It was equally surprising to find out Tuesday that one of Vikings owner Zygi Wilf's private planes was in Hattiesburg to pick up Favre and deliver him to Childress, who was waiting in St. Paul.
That came after Childress placed a call to Favre on Monday.
"I can be persistent at times," Childress said.
• Quarterback Alex Brink, 24, a former Washington State Cougar, rejoined the Houston Texans, who released him in June. Brink is to work as Houston's third quarterback while Rex Grossman recovers from a hamstring injury.
• League officials are looking into the events that landed Oakland defensive assistant Randy Hanson in the hospital with a jaw injury and Raiders coach Tom Cable on the hot seat for his alleged role as the attacker in an incident that reportedly took place Aug. 5 in Napa, Calif.
Cable, a former Snohomish High School player, told media: "Nothing happened."
• Oakland receiver Chaz Schilens broke a bone in his left foot while running a route in practice.
• Denver receiver Brandon Marshall, who has said he is unhappy with his contract and wants either a raise or a trade, is annoyed with the way the team handled his acquittal on misdemeanor battery charges last week, a person close to him told The Associated Press.
The Denver Post reported players were told by a member of the Broncos' public-relations staff not to say they were happy for Marshall but instead to say it was good for the organization the issue was behind them.
• Tampa Bay will open the season without safety Tanard Jackson, who apologized for his four-game suspension for violating the league's substance-abuse policy.
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UPDATE - 07:23 AM
NFL, union resume labor talks at mediator's office