On Monday afternoon, news of 72 year old Bill Cosby’s death shocked the nation.  Apparently, it shocked even Bill Cosby who has now endured four of his own death hoaxes this week (Five if you include the movie “Ghost Dad”).  However, as the hoax was slowly debunked, the Internet backtracked.

Conversely, part of me feels like Cosby has been the mastermind behind his own death hoaxes as a method of reminding the public he’s still here and not senile.  In fact, his first tweet after his brush with news of his death included a promotion of his new IPhone App.

Which brings me back to Brett Favre.  What is the over/under on Favre retirements versus premature Cosby memorials.  I’m sure everyone would like to know who would show up to their own funeral and what they’d say.  Well this is the best Brett Favre could do.  Brett savors listening to his own career post mortem from the confines of his ranch.  That may be why he sent such an ambiguous text to his teammates.  “This is it”?  I’ve sent that text 50 times over the last three weeks for every A-Rod at bat.

Brett’s had this planned on his Mayan calendar for 19 years, King James style.  If you’d like to get a hint of what his off-season plans were, you simply have to rewind the clock to February to his first public appearance after the season ended on Jay Leno.  Jay Leno knows a little something about retirements.  More than most.  Ask Conan O’Brien.  That’s why I didn’t buy the report.

At some point, he’ll come to the realization that he owes the Vikings another season after costing them Donovan McNabb, or Curt Schilling’s surgeon will develop another revolutionary surgery which he’ll perform on Favre who’ll make his triumphant announcement in September.  Every time Brett Favre has retired in the past, he’s returned with a completely different logo on his helmet.  At least this time, there’s no potential of him ending up in a Raiders uniform–right?

Throughout the day,  just like Cosby and the Internet, the media did the Moonwalk on their Favre retirement sources.  And today, Favre officially rolled back the stone from his grave by telling Ed Werder that he’ll still play if healthy.

But what took them so long?  All day yesterday, I expected Favre or his agent Bus Cook to deny or confirm his retirement.  Instead they remained silent for 24 hours.  I know Mississippi isn’t exactly the avant garde of modern civilization but just as easily as he quoted Michael Jackson in his “This is it” retirement text, he could have borrowed from the Governator-“I’ll be back”.  It was probably a ploy to squeeze a few million dollars out of Minnesota’s wallet.

Sports Illustrated’s Peter King believes Favre won’t make a decision until after the Vikings Week 4 bye, which begs the question.  Is Favre simply concerned with maintaining his consecutive games started streak?  If it was a matter of waiting out the ankle he’d return to the team, which would allow him to collect his $14 million dollar salary as he passed GO and rest the ankle on his own timetable.  They’ve made it abundantly clear there is no pressure to put him and his surgically repaired ankle through the rigors of training camp.  So why would he potentially wait until after the bye?  Because if he returns and his ankle isn’t healthy by the regular season he may have to watch Tarvaris Jackson start ahead of him and bring his eternal streak to a halt in his final season.

Brett Favre’s saga has more twists and turns than an R. Kelly video.  He’s the master of suspense.  However, he’s lacking originality.  Favre retiring is like watching a Tony Scott Film (Pelham 123, Last Boy Scout, Enemy of the State, True Romance, Domino, Crimson Tide, Beverly Hills Cop II, etc.) with a shootout in the climax.

DEVELOPING STORY: Hours after speaking to Dr. James Andrews, Favre visits hair specialist and 70’s fashion icon Walt Frazier to discuss color rejuvenation after head coach Brad Childress tells him “”No play 4 Mr. Grey!” The former NBA All-Star and Just For Men spokesman promised young, natural hair color in time for the season opener.

In 2008, I compared him to Derek Zoolander because of his inability to let go and his thirst for retribution led me to call out his similarities to Beatrix Kiddo.  Favre relishes kidnapping an entire organization and being responsible for the most high profile kidnapping since the Lindbergh baby.  John Walsh should be reporting from Vikings training camp, not Adam Schefter.  In fact, I was advanced Walsh’s transcript for an upcoming ESPN special.

JOHN WALSH: This is John Walsh and the National Football League needs your help finding the Minnesota Vikings and their ruthless kidnapper.  Once a proud franchise, a crazed gunslinger has kidnapped the Minnesota Vikings.  The Vikings were last seen being eliminated by the Philadelphia Eagles in the Wild Card Round of the 2008 Playoffs at home.  We need (points at screen) YOUR help freeing them from their captor.  The suspect.  A grizzly bearded Mississippi native named Brett Favre.  Brett Favre has a record longer than most of the offenders we’ve caught thanks to your tips.  He’s the NFL’s career leader in pass attempts, completions, touchdowns, yards, consecutive starts, interceptions AND now finishes first all-time in retirement announcements.  He is approximately 6 foot 2, 222 pounds and walks gingerly on his left ankle.

MISCELLANEOUS MISSISSIPPI COP (with country drawl): ‘Dis whole incident began after Brett’s previous employer in Green Bay outsourced his job to a yung ‘un.  And since then Brett’s gone stark raving mad.  First time he faked his retirement, everyone thought it was just a phase.  Little did we know it would become an annual event.

ERIC MANGINI: He settled in New York and while there he terrorized our organization and was the root of more firings than a California arsonist.  In the midst of those firings he faked his retirement a second time.  Assuming his career was dead, the Jets released his rights and fired me.  My Jets coaching career was his first victim.  Last I heard, he had moved on to Minnesota.

JOHN WALSH: It was in New York where Brett Favre hatched his escape to the Packers NFC North purple gang rivals and plotted his revenge on Green Bay.   And finally, in Week 8, he returned to Lambeau Field and took his frustrations out on the Packers by throwing for four touchdown passes ad making himself the first NFL quarterback with a victory over all 32 teams.

JOHN WALSH: Even Brett Favre’s former allies are beginning to be turned off by his repetitive retiring.  In a brutally honest interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinal, ex-Packers safety and former teammate of Favre, Leroy Butler said this:

LEROY BUTLER: Everybody in Minnesota knows that Brett Favre is running that organization, “Brett is a chip, Super Bowl or bust, all in, So you knew Brett was a diva, you knew Brett wanted it his own way, you knew this all along. It was just a matter of time before it happened. If I’m Percy Harvin, and I have a question on a route or a play, I’m going right to Brett Favre,”  he told the paper.   “If I’m Adrian Peterson and I’m not getting the carries I want, I don’t go to Childress or (OC Darrell) Bevell, I go to Brett Favre.  He’s running the team.  All this falls on Brett.

JOHN MADDEN: This is tough to talk about because, well you know,  I loved Jet Favre.  That’s part of Brett’s operation you know. Lemme break it down for ya. You know, H-H-H-He retires, (while performing wild hand gestures) starts strong–rejuvenates your fan base with his childlike love for the game.  You know, throwin’ snowballs, and once you’ve become comfortable with his affable persona–(POW!) you know, he pulls the rug out from beneath you.  Usually he’ll do it with an ill advised flick of the wrist on his last pass of the season and (BOOM!) those snowballs he’s throwin’ turn into interceptions.  Green Bay took him 17 years to pull off his scheme.  He’s become more proficient through the years.  It only took him a season to run this con in Minnesota and New Jersey.

JOHN WALSH: After months of silence, activity has suddenly picked up.  Just last weekend, Favre abducted head coach Brad Childress who was visiting to retrieve Favre and took him on an impromptu hunting trip at his 400 acre ranch that some believe may have been a thinly veiled threat towards the organization.

BRAD CHILDRESS: We come back through the gate (at Favre’s ranch.) Deanna is in the back seat. I’m in the front seat. Brett’s driving. We start to slow down on the driveway.  I go, ‘What the hell is that?’   This thing kind of shows up and looks like it’s going to hit the car.  Brett goes, ‘It’s an armadillo.”

I know what an opossum looks like.  You go to the zoo to see an armadillo.  I said, ‘It’s a what?’  Then I said to him, ‘that’s the thing with the armor on the back, right?’  He goes, ‘yeah, those damn things tear the heck out of the grass.”

Now he’s accelerated the car toward the house and he says, “I’m going to get that SOB.  I thought I got rid of him.  They eat grubs.  Just tear the heck out of the grass.’

He lets Deanna out of the car.  We jump in his truck.  He’s got two guns in the back seat of his truck.  We go back down the road to find the thing.   He pulls out a flashlight.  It’s like a police flashlight.  I say, ‘that much light comes out of that flashlight?’

He’s looking over here, over there.  We look over and now it’s crossed the creek and coming over the road.  He grabs his gun and goes, “boom, boom, boom.”  Then he goes, “goshdangit.” Now he’s thinking about whether to set a trap.  Now he’s got the armadillo in his head.” (wipes tears from eyes)

JOHN WALSH: After throwing another devastating pick in the Conference Championship Game for the SECOND time in THREE years, the trail’s gone cold.   This is the last known interview video evidence of Favre addressing a “return”  from his three day football hiatus before presumably fleeing to Hattiesburg.  Now he may be extorting the Vikings for another $3-6 million  in base salary next season.

“Favre has many resources to go on the run with including his agent Bus Cook, his wife Deanna, ESPN’s Ed Werder as well as assets in the form of $200 million in career earnings so he is a flight risk.  Favre has been spotted in and around high school football practices around the state of Mississippi wearing a sleaveless t-shirt and a tattered hat.  Favre has admittedly developed an addiction to painkillers in the past and we fear with his ankle injury he may turn back to abusing pills.
Zygi Wilf and the Minnesota Vikings need your help.  If you have any information that could lead to the capture and re-signing of this man:

Call 612-33-VIKES right away to speak with a season tickets sales representative.  Under no circumstances are you to contact Green Bay authorities.  Remember, his right arm is EXTREMELY DANGEROUS.