"Brett is someone that I always held in the highest regard, first as a young person who grew up in Wisconsin, and then as a fellow NFL quarterback. His style of play was as unique as it was effective. I admired his skills, his leadership, and especially his love for playing the game. You knew he was having fun when he played, and that made him fun to watch.
"He set the standard at the position for a long time, and I wish him and his family nothing but the best."
Philadelphia Eagles head coach and former Packers quarterbacks coach Andy Reid:
On whether he was surprised about Packers QB Brett Favre's decision to retire:
"No, I wasn't. I kind of knew it was going to come one of these years here, fairly quickly. He's been playing a long time. He sure ended on a high note. He had an unbelievable year. It might be, statistically, the best one he's ever had. What a way to go out."
On when he realized how good Favre could be:
"Well he thought he was good right away. That's what made him so good. He was fearless when he was on the football field. He was a coach's kid; he was raised around the game and understood the game. He loved to play. That fearless, reckless-abandon style was what drove him to greatness. It started from the first game he played in with the Packers."
On whether he thinks Favre is actually retired, or if he might make a comeback:
"I don't know; I haven't talked to him. I know I'm standing in front of a lot of cameras right here, figuring it must be over. It has to come to an end sometime. I'm not going to tell you he can't still play; it looks like he still has a couple more years in him. The ball is coming out as fast as it ever has."
On whether it was an adjustment for the coaching staff to harness his wild playmaking ability:
"He always said not to watch him if you wanted to see how you're supposed to throw the football. Technically, he's not very good. But, the end result was a little bit like Arnold Palmer—it's not the prettiest swing in the world, but when the club head hit the ball, it was the best. That's kind of how [Favre] was. When that ball came out of his hand, it was the best."
Seattle Seahawks head coach and former Packers head coach Mike Holmgren:
Seahawks Head Coach Mike Holmgren: "Brett's career accomplishments will be measured among the greats of the game for the balance of time. He truly was as gifted a player as I have ever seen, and as proud and amazed as I am of what Brett has accomplished on the playing field. The thing that impresses me the most is what kind of a man and leader he has become off the field since I have known him. I have taken great joy in watching him develop as a person and father — perhaps even more so — than as a coach watching his quarterback."
Bears coach Lovie Smith:
"I think this announcement comes about 17 years too late and I don't know if I will completely believe it until Green Bay opens the season without No. 4 lining up under center. In all seriousness, no one has given more to our game than Brett Favre. I have spent the better part of my NFL coaching career working on game plans to beat him. There is no player I respect more. He is one of the all-time greats to ever play in the NFL. He was a tremendous leader and the ultimate competitor on Sundays. I wish him and his family the very best."
Vikings offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, who spent three years as Packers quality control, then three years as the team's quarterbacks coach:
"There's a lot you could say about his playing career, but everybody will say those things. ... I was able to have insight into the other side of him — what a great guy he is, how he treated players, how great he was to be around.
"Brett Favre is a competitive guy ... He knew I had his best interests in mind. I'm not going to say that there weren't some run-ins, but he was all ears, and he was always willing to listen."
Marv Levy, Pro Football Hall of Fame coach, who stepped down after two years as Buffalo Bills general manager after last season:
"He was the prototypical gunslinger type. He's the type of guy where, 'Oh, what's he throwing into that crowd for?' But he had intuition, toughness, resilience. It helped to have a good cast around him, which he often did. Those are all qualities which good quarterbacks have."
Seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong:
"If people say to me, 'Who are the athletes you respect the most?' I would tell you that I respect Andre Agassi and Brett Favre the most because they were guys that played through pain, played through misery."
Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle:
"I've said many times it's a lot easier to govern this state when the Packers are winning than when they're losing. And with Brett Favre, they have won a lot more than they have lost, and they have done it with great style."
Brett Favre's brother, Scott Favre:
"He just felt like it was time to go out. He's been lucky. He's been injury free, and it's time to go out on top. Basically, you know he didn't win a Super Bowl (this year), but he went out playing good. And that's probably a peace of mind for him to show people that he could still play when people thought he was done."
Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer:
"As a fellow player, I have nothing but the utmost respect for Brett. He's one of the quarterbacks I watched a lot and really looked up to as a young teenager and through college. As great a passer as he was, the thing I really admired was his toughness. His record for most consecutive starts will never be broken. It's one of the most amazing records in sports. I guarantee you, he gets an immense amount of respect from every quarterback in the NFL for that record."
ESPN Monday Night Football analyst Ron Jaworski:
"The number one trait that Brett Favre had was anticipation, and I think it's key to any successful quarterback, but as I watched Brett through 17 years of playing this game, the ball went out of his hands quickly. He knew where to go with the football before the receivers would make their break. … The great anticipation and understanding of that West Coast offense really was the key to his consistent success."
ESPN Monday Night Countdown analyst Steve Young:
"What I remember about Brett Favre most is his ability to put the ball in the end zone throwing touchdown passes. I myself learned a lot through the 90s of his ability to take a receiver that's not even open and putting the ball in a spot where that guy can catch the football, and, instead of kicking field goals, Brett Favre was throwing touchdowns when most weren't."
NFL Live analyst Mark Schlereth:
"Brett Favre, still, he's a guy that goes out and has a blast playing the game, and you could see that this year. You could see the childlike exuberance that he brought to the game every week, week in and week out. I understand the mental anguish that you have to go through and how tough it is to prepare every season, but all those other factors I thought would lean and push him to playing one more year."
Monday Night Football commentator and Pardon the Interruption co-host Tony Kornheiser:
"He's a creature of habit. He's the Dalmatian at the firehouse, and during the summer this is what he's done for so long – his whole life, play football. He can walk right in and do it again, so I do think it's possible that he would want to come back. … Today's early March. Let's see how he feels after taking a few months off."
Pardon the Interruption co-host Michael Wilbon:
"Brett Favre plays in a place where it's different. It's not just an American big city. It's an American village where football is the most important thing they have."
Senior NFL analyst Chris Mortensen:
"There was nothing else left for him to do. He made that clear. He set all the records, and I think in the end it was all about winning and the stress and duress of trying to win and trying to actually live in his own shadow."