The way that networks, newspapers and radio stations are covering Brett Favre is almost more interesting than him playing for the Jets this season. There had been rumors that the Jets were being extremely selective about who Favre interviewed with and now NY Daily News has a shaft by shaft account of the situation….
While their reaction is reminiscent of the Secret Service swooping in to protect the President, it should come as no surprise. When Favre arrived at Jets camp, a rule was immediately set: He would give no one-on-one interviews.
Last week, the Jets’ stated policy concerning Favre was altered. The “policy” now seemed to be highly selective and exercised at the Jets’ discretion.
On Monday, Favre did a one-on-one telephone interview with ESPN-1050’s Michael Kay. ESPN-1050 is the radio home of the Jets (WABC-AM airs Jets games, too). ESPN-1050 promoted the interview as Favre’s first “exclusive” one-on-one since joining the Jets. The next day Favre went on WFAN with Mike (Napoleon Solo) Francesa.
While Favre likely did not get paid for the ESPN-1050 interview, this was definitely a form of checkbook chatter. ESPN-1050 got the spot because of its partnership with the Jets. Unfortunately, the interview was a snoozefest with Favre basically repeating much of what he had said since arriving at the Jets Hofstra bunker.
Yes, Jets scribes were shafted here, but the organization had a good excuse. This was just business. The Jets were taking care of a partner. The real kick in the butt came Tuesday when Francesa planted his fanny inside a tent at Hofstra.
WFAN is the radio home of the NFL champion Giants, but there sat Favre yakking live one-on-one with Francesa (seen also on YES). Even Eric Mangini hung around, playing the role of Favre’s wingman.
Gang Green operatives breaking their own rule for business purposes is one thing, but allowing Francesa to access Favre gave those covering the team every right to be ticked and also feel like rented mules. Before you say “Who cares,” realize this: The beat writers are an essential link between fans and a team. When an organization deprives them of one-on-one access, they are depriving you of original information, too.
Very Interesting. I can completely understand giving ESPN 1050 the first interview following the trade, but the WFAN is baffling. Raissman, who wrote the piece, even goes on to say that the Jets have also yet to grant its local TV partner, SNY, and sitdown with Favre. How would you feel if you were SNY and a Giants radio station in WFAN got an interview before you did? I’d be pretty upset.
Also, Newsday’s Neil Best has a collection of quotes from various announcers in regards to Favre coverage this year. It’s a really good look into their thinking, so check it out. Here’s a small sample….
“We should be paying part of his salary.”- Jim Nantz
“I’m hoping it’s more play action. I hope he’s holding the ball more, dropping deeper. I want to see him throw it down the field more because everyone says ‘gunslinger, great arm,’ but Green Bay led the league in short passes.”- Phil Simms
“He’s certainly given a shot in the arm to this city. It’s been great. It seems like it’s all we talk about on the radio.”- Boomer Esiason
“As far as adapting to terminology and plays, if there’s anybody in the league who can do it, it’s him, because of the experience he’s had. Football is football. You read coverages. Coverages don’t change much. It’s just the approach to the offense.”- Dan Marino
“It’s like being dropped in the middle of Japan, trying to speak that language and you have to figure it out for yourself … You might see some ugly picks early in the year. You might see early throws that look like he doesn’t know what he’s doing. It’s because he doesn’t.”- Rich Gannon
It’s a shame that Gannon probably won’t to get to call any Favre game this year (#1 and 2 teams will get all of them) because he seems to be the only analyst being realistic. Good for him. CBS will be banking on him early in the season, so it will be interesting to see how Nantz, Simms, etc. cover him. I’m not rooting for Favre to have a bad season, but rather hoping that CBS doesn’t sugarcoat things if he does.
Brett Favre, Jets run quarterback sneak on media (NY Daily News)
CBS hoping to bank on Jets’ Brett Favre bonanza (Newsday)