Tron Legacy opens Friday and it’s indescribable how excited I am for it.  But it’s somehow only the second most talked about legacy being discussed these days.  After missing his first start in 18 years on Monday night despite God’s intervention at the MetroDome Sunday morning, Brett Favre’s career may or may not be over. I believe he’s got three games left in him.  Regardless, it’s time to begin shopping memoirs. When it comes to Favre’s legacy, I’ll quote the 43rd, George W. (Don’t read too much into it.) Historians who live the moment have always got their prejudice. Something about Brett Favre brings out the extremes in people.  I saw both extremes in 2007 and this fall.  In 2007 couldn’t stand him.

Back then Brett Favre was rattling off a career season in Green Bay because a head coach had finally holstered the gunslinger but I rolled my eyes at the adulation over Favre.

Some were calling him the greatest quarterback of all-time. Quite honestly, I thought he was overrated. A byproduct of his jovial persona and childlike enthusiasm.

Sure he’d just broken a litany of Dan Marino’s records but he was reckless, undisciplined and broke an interception record at 37 it took George Blanda 48 years to set. Some call him a riverboat gambler, I know him as the human equivalent of  one of Siegfried and Roy’s white tigers. He could be your teams savior one moment  and the next moment pull a complete 180 and maul your season. Green Bay and Minnesota found out late in January of 2008 and 2010.

Then came, the move to New York and the hype he carried came along with him. Around that time, the tide of opinion surrounding him changed for everyone including me.

Yesterday, Bomani Jones actually called Favre’s 297 game streak narcissistic. His logic? Because there’s no way that in 18 years, there wasn’t a backup who could perform better than a banged up Favre. By that same thought process, Kirk Gibson was an egotistical jerk for hitting a walk off homerun with two outs left in Game One of the ’88 World Series and then limping around the bases.

As for the retirement threats Favre shouldn’t have walked away in 2007 for the same reason I knew he wouldn’t walk away after the NFC Championship. He didn’t walk away from either season in a blaze of glory. Instead he would have retired with regret over his final throws. I’d imagine he can now sleep better without the what if scenarios.

Part of the vitriol rests on Favre’ surgically repaired shoulders, the rest on the media. I remember the ridiculous speculation about whether Favre would return to the team during the Week 5 bye week so his streak could continue. I thought that was the most ridiculous theory I’d ever heard. None of that came from Favre but the misinformation created more national antipathy for him

For me at least, the change of scenery enhanced his legacy. The extremes changed so drastically, I’ve had to take up defending Favre.  At each stop, his teams offenses improved exponentially. Had it not been for a torn biceps tendon injury, he would have been a New York Jet through 2010. The Jets were 8-3 until he suffered the injury.

Last season in Minnesota, he had a career year and stood virtually untouched behind a moat, fortress and an offensive line.

This season he’s taken more shots than 50 Cent and gotten jittery but he’s earned the right to limp away in my eyes.  (The whole Jenn Sterger saga presumably involved a completely different type of limp. By the way, the media wants to remain classy towards this journalist but anyone who’s followed Jen Sterger’s rise from her discovery at a Florida State game five years ago to her MAXIM shoots knows she’s not a “journalist”. She even tiptoed the line of extortion better than Stephon Marbury by threatening to cooperate with the NFL unless Favre settled out of court with her.)

Watch the Vikings  past Monday night game and tell me they were a better team without Favre.  You can’t. The Vikings eventually resorted to Joe Webb, a rookie they originally drafted as a tightend.

At 41, he’s lost the aura but that’s okay. Most guys lose it at 31 along with their hair follicles. His just lost the color. The average lifespan of a gunslinger in the wild west was 27. He’s far outlived his career expectancy.

Over 20 years he earned the right to create a little drama and while he’s not top five in my book over the past three years he’s earned my respect.