One thing Favre may not be able to avoid, however, is the talk from head coach Brad Childress. The speech talk is one he gives to many players who are going back to face their old team, letting them know they shouldn't try to do too much.
"You know, I always have to do that, typically when you go back to somebody's home town or team that they've been with before. I'm always mindful of that," Childress told NFL Network this week. "It doesn't make a difference how many times we go there, I always kind of sidle up to them sometime during the week and say, ‘Do I need to have the old speech with you? Let's not try to get out of body. Let's make sure we've got it quieted down.' I'm sure I'll do the same with him."
Of course, Favre's level of anticipation could be off the charts as Monday Night Football approaches and his long-time team, the Green Bay Packers, get set to enter the Metrodome, home site of his team for the last six weeks. Revenge is an oft-cited motive among national media outlets playing the angle that Favre wants to stick it to Packers general manager Ted Thompson for not simply releasing Favre when he decided to come out of retirement in the summer of 2008. Instead, Thompson prevented Favre from going to the Vikings by trading his rights to the New York Jets and putting a "poison pill" in the trade agreement that would make it too costly for the Jets to turn around and trade him to the Vikings.
Earlier this week, Childress took a Biblical approach when asked about his desire to see Favre in purple a year sooner than it happened.
"The good Lord tells us not to covet other people's goods. No I didn't covet him because he was property of the Packers," Childress said.
Whether or not people believe that, they know how much rides on the Monday night game. A win would keep the Vikings in sole possession of first place. A Vikings loss would make both teams 3-1 with the Packers having the early head-to-head advantage. The Bears could also move to 3-1 with a win on Sunday.
From an individual standpoint, a Vikings win would complete Favre's around-the-league tour. He would become the only quarterback to beat all 32 current teams in the league.
He will also become the first quarterback to play at least 16 years for one team and to later start against that team.
Favre certainly comes into the game with early-season momentum, thanks to a 32-yard, game-winning touchdown pass on Sunday to wide receiver Greg Lewis with two seconds to play that gave the Vikings a 27-24 win over San Francisco.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first game-winning touchdown pass ever thrown by Favre in the last 10 seconds of the fourth quarter. It was also the longest game-winning TD pass in the NFL in the last 10 seconds of the fourth quarter since Dec. 8, 2002, when Tim Couch tossed a 50-yarder to Quincy Morgan to give the Browns a 21-20 win at Jacksonville.
"I think the thing that struck me about how he handled that … he's an equal-opportunity thrower," Childress told NFL Network, referring to the fact that it was Lewis' first catch as a Viking in his first game active with the team. "If you're open, he's going to throw to you. It doesn't make any difference if it's the last play – Greg Lewis just got here two weeks ago – or the first play. … I knew he would find the guys that are open against their coverage, but our line did a nice job of keeping him clean."
In fact, the NFC North has two of the eight teams that fit that mold. The 2006 Chicago Bears reached Super Bowl XLI when they did it and the 2007 Packers reached the NFC Championship Game.