Childress explains sideline conversation

Vikings coach Brad Childress explained his side of a third-quarter sideline conversation with Brett Favre, at which time Childress considered replacing Favre with Tarvaris Jackson.

Brett Favre described a sideline conversation Sunday night with head coach Brad Childress as "heated." On Monday, Vikings coach Brad Childress called his conversation with Favre a "stream of consciousness."

"I'm watching what I'm watching, and I said, ‘Hey, you know what? I'm thinking about taking you out of the game here. I mean, you're getting your rear end kicked' through not a lot of fault of his own," Childress said. "As I'm watching that and as I'm watching that occur, I'm giving him a stream of consciousness. Obviously, he didn't want anything to do with that, which I certainly appreciate from his standpoint. From any quarterback. He wasn't like, OK, let me get my hat and put it on. That wasn't in his makeup. So I appreciate that from his standpoint."

The conversation happened with about 10 minutes left in the third quarter of a 26-7 loss, and the NBC broadcast caught a snippet of it, showing Childress and Favre talking and Favre pulling his arm away from Childress.

At the time, the Vikings held a 7-6 lead over the Panthers and Favre said he was looking to get the offense going, not take a seat on the sideline while Tarvaris Jackson went in for him.

Childress said he didn't view the conversation as heated and compared it to another talk he had with Favre during the Arizona game two weeks prior, another game that the Vikings lost on the road.

"This game is an emotional game, particularly when you're right in the middle of it. So I appreciate his wanting to stick to it," Childress said.

The head coach acknowledged that "in his stream of consciousness" he was contemplating whether or not Jackson would give the Vikings a better opportunity to win.

"I certainly was thinking about that. But more my stream was of the nature that (Favre is) taking a beating here. So I know the next part of that. But that wasn't part of it right then when I was speaking to him," Childress said.

Yet Childress also said his thoughts during that conversation didn't have anything to do with how Favre was playing. In the first half, Favre completed 6 of 7 passes for 49 yards.

On his first series of the second half, he completed one of three passes in a three-and-out drive, but in the next series he completed two of three passes for 33 yards, but he also took his third sack of the game.

"What I said was, ‘It has nothing to do with how you're playing. It has to do with what's happening to you out there.' Again, there's volatility and emotion involved," Childress said.

"… I knew it was going to stimulate some dialogue. I wasn't trying to get a goat. I was just telling him what I was seeing."

Childress said it wasn't a situation where Favre defied an order to come out of the game.

"Not at all. It was something that was talked through. I wish I could remember how it finished. It wasn't a, "So there!" It wasn't like that," he said.

What seemed to irritate Favre about the situation during his press conference Sunday night was that the Vikings were still winning when the conversation took place. They had a 7-6 lead that unraveled in the fourth quarter when the Panthers scored 20 unanswered points.

"Brad wanted to go in a different direction and I wanted to stay in the game," Favre said. "It's not 70-6, but we were up 7-6. I said, ‘I'm staying in the game. I'm playing.'"

Childress acknowledged that Favre was looking to win the game and indicated he wasn't concerned with taking hits.

"One of his replies last night was, ‘Hey, we're struggling, we need to win this game. That's what we need to do,'" Childress said. "We weren't thinking ahead to the Giants or the Bears or anything. He was staying in the moment. His competitive zeal was there, always."

Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.

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