On Sunday, Brett Favre hit Greg Jennings on a 16-yard slant for a touchdown as part of the Packers’ 23-16 win over the Minnesota Vikings in the dreaded Metrodome. It was the 421st of Favre’s career, which broke Dan Marino’s record of 420. The previous record-holder? Fran Tarkenton at 342. The next active player with a shot at breaking Favre’s new mark? Peyton Manning, who moved to 283 on Sunday. In between are John Elway (300), Warren Moon (291) and Johnny Unitas (290).
If Manning doesn’t catch Favre, it may be awhile before anyone else does. The next active players after Manning? Kerry Collins (a backup in Tennessee) and Steve McNair (starting in Baltimore), both at 174.
Also on Sunday, and lost in the hoopla surrounding the “home run” record, Favre surpassed Marino to become the all-time leader in pass attempts. Last week, in a 31-24 win over San Diego, Favre surpassed Marino for the lead in pass completions. And to claim the grandaddy of them all, passing yardage, Favre would need to finish this season with 3,861 yards; not unrealistic at all, as Favre was one of six QBs to surpass that mark in 2006. With two more INTs, he’ll tie George Blanda for the all-time lead in that dubious category, too. According to a story in the Journal-Sentinel, Blanda may actually get a bit misty when Favre inevitably breaks Blanda’s mark. Though Blanda’s record for most INTs in a season (42) is probably safe, even from Favre.
Thing is, Favre is far from done. He hit No. 422 later in the Vikings game and is showing no signs of slowing down. In fact, he’s showing signs of a reversal from the direction he’d been heading the past two seasons. Touchdowns were down, interceptions were up; it appeared Favre was fading quickly to black.
Perhaps it’s the youth around him re-energizing him, perhaps it’s playing within the confines of Mike McCarthy’s system … or maybe he just wants to antagonize Bubba for one more season. Whatever it is, it has Favre leading the league both in completions and attempts, and among the leaders in passer rating, yardage and TDs.
And the best part about it is he has to be mentioned seriously as an early contender for league MVP, which of course would be No. 4 for No. 4.
Packer fans, enjoy it while it lasts. Our quarterback makes a little more history every time he takes the field, and we’re blessed to watch it every week in our home market.