Three weeks after Brett Favre told Brad Childress that he had decided to remain retired, the future Hall of Fame quarterback reversed course and jumped at an offer from the Vikings coach to join the team.
Favre was so anxious to get on the field that only three days and 2½ practices after signing a two-year, $25 million contract, he played two series in the Vikings' 17-13 preseason victory over the Kansas City Chiefs at the Metrodome.
It quickly became clear that while Favre might have had little interest in spending two weeks at training camp in Mankato, Minn., it definitely would have benefited him.
Favre's familiarity with the West Coast system run by the Vikings is not in question. He spent 16 seasons directing a similar offense with the Green Bay Packers and at one point this offseason claimed he could teach it.
The issue for Favre is that he's going to quickly need to get himself in game shape and also familiarize himself with a group of offensive players with whom he has no past experience.
Favre might know what Bernard Berrian, Percy Harvin, Visanthe Shiancoe, Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor are supposed to do, but what he doesn't know are the nuances of how they will execute their assignments.
That's the reason Childress wanted Favre at training camp in the first place. The experience might not be pleasant - few professional athletes probably enjoy living in a college dorm room - but the on- and off-the-field work that is accomplished can be key for laying the groundwork for success once the regular-season starts.
Instead, Favre is going to have to go into hurry up mode in getting prepared for the 2009 season. He looked rusty against the Chiefs, completing 1 of 4 passes for 4 yards. That came as no surprise given that he hadn't participated in actual game-like action since the end of last season when he was with the New York Jets.
"I am probably more concerned right now with just getting my legs in shape," Favre said after the Chiefs game. "They are a little bit sore the last few days just from dropping back and just doing things that you just can't get until you start practicing. My arm is not in game shape. It is just hard to simulate."
Favre did spend the offseason throwing to a group of high school receivers in Hattiesburg, Miss., after undergoing surgery to repair the biceps tendon in his throwing arm. But that came with him wearing shorts and a T-shirt, a baseball cap, sun glasses and a wrist watch.
There were no shoulder pads and certainly no pass rush. Against the Chiefs, Favre took two hits, including one on his seventh and final play when linebacker Corey Mays came through untouched on a blitz.
Favre was able to get up from that hit, as he has so many times before. That doesn't mean there aren't going to be concerns about Favre's health.
He will turn 40 years old on Oct. 10 and in addition to having had surgery this offseason, he also revealed during his introductory news conference that he has a tear in the rotator cuff in his throwing arm.
How big of a factor that will be remains to be seen, but it would seem foolish to dismiss the injury, given Favre's age and how his arm bothered him in the second half of last season as the Jets struggled to a 1-4 finish during his one year in New York.
"It felt a little odd after so many years of being on the other side," Favre said. "I thought it was a welcome reception [by the crowd]. I know in the long run it will be judged by wins and losses. I am well aware of that. This is a tough place to play. It's nice to be on the other side."
"I tell you the most exciting week was when we won the division last year and hopefully we can build on that," said Wilf, who bought the team in 2005. "Like we always said, we want to make our team better and whoever we bring in, including Brett, I think our team will be better. So, we look forward to a great season and we want to repeat as division champs. We have a lot to look forward to and a lot to fight for."
QUOTE TO NOTE: "It's special. I've been watching the guy since I was in elementary school. To be able to be on the same team with him and for him to bring that passion that he plays with, he's just a good guy, funny guy, he's a good teammate." - RB Adrian Peterson on getting the chance to play with Brett Favre.