Stephen A. Smith - Brett Favre

The only thing more ridiculous than falsely claiming the media has ignored the Brett Favre scandal, is Favre claiming to be the victim of a media smear campaign.

While the media has covered Favre’s alleged involvement in a Mississippi welfare case over the last month, the former NFL quarterback has been silent until recently. Earlier this week, Favre finally addressed the allegations against him by providing a statement to Fox News Digital to declare his innocence.

“I have been unjustly smeared in the media,” Favre said in his statement to Fox News Digital. “I have done nothing wrong, and it is past time to set the record straight.”

Thursday morning, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith slammed Favre’s attempt at blaming the media for covering the allegations that have been reported as a mode of self-defense.

“Your argument is that the media has smeared you? That’s what you come with, after hiding for weeks!” Smith ranted on First Take. “We haven’t seen you anywhere! But then when you speak, it’s that you’ve gotten smeared. Really? Man, nobody’s trying to hear that…to say that, ‘oh it’s the media smearing you,’ it’s just cowardly, man. It’s just cowardly.”

Mississippi nonprofit executive Nancy New has pled guilty to felony counts relating to the embezzlement case which misallocated $77 million in funds from the Federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. Last month, a text exchange from 2017 between Favre and New was released that implied the former NFL quarterback was aware he would be improperly receiving some of those misallocated funds.

While Favre claims he did not know where the funds were coming from, that doesn’t take away from the fact that he appeared to know they were not being used as intended. Despite the damning evidence against him, Favre remained silent for nearly one month before finally accusing the media of a smear campaign as his first line of defense.

“We got First Take here, right? I understand why you wouldn’t want to show up on First Take and sit across from me and Molly [Qerim] to answer these questions,” Smith continued. “But you’ve got your own show! You could have gone on a microphone and spoke on your own show, brother didn’t show up!”

SiriusXM put Favre’s show on hold last month, so it wasn’t the quarterback’s sole inclination to just not show up. Smith made that clarification later in First Take. But that doesn’t take away from the sentiment that Favre had plenty of time to choose a platform and a soft-landing spot to either speak or release a written statement in the last month.

[First Take]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to