I need a Brett Favre chopper shot, stat!
-- The Smelly Car, "Seinfeld"
There are news stories. And then there are news stories.
If ESPN is any guide, then Brett Favre's (yawn) return to football to play for the Minnesota Vikings is President Obama's inauguration, Michael Jackson's death and 9-11 rolled into one.
While home for a half hour at lunch, all of ESPN's channels were going wall-to-wall with Favre coverage. In a span of 15 minutes, the network replayed Favre's interview with Ed Werder following his "retirement" from the New York Jets twice, had trotted out former teammate/Packer wide receiver Antonio Freeman for comment, brought on Michele Tafoya so she could tell the story of how while in a Minneapolis grocery store "people began screaming in the aisles" like it was Beatlemania, and showed about a zillion shots of Favre exiting an airplane in St. Paul and making the rounds in an SUV.
I NEED A HELICOPTER SHOT OF FAVRE, STAT! IS THAT HIM STOPPING TO TAKE A LEAK IN THE MEN'S ROOM? GET ON IT NOW, PEOPLE, NOW!
We're used to this in Green Bay. I mean, we're a TV blog for chrissakes and we felt compelled to post something on Favre today. But c'mon, ESPN. Act like you've been there before.
Anyway, for TV related purposes, let's just throw out this little nugget since most of the crazies are already lathered up on our Packers News site.
According to my research (thanks Wikipedia!), the highest-rated "Monday Night Football" telecast on ABC was the Miami Dolphins' victory over the previously-undefeated Chicago Bears on December 2, 1985, which drew a Nielsen rating of 29.6 and a share of 46. The highest-rated "MNF" game on ESPN, and the highest-rated program in U.S. cable television history to date, was the Dallas Cowboys' defeat of the Philadelphia Eagles on September 15, 2008, with a rating of 13.3.
Two safe bets: From now until October, Rachel Nichols will be living in a tent outside Vikings headquarters and Favre's first game against the Packers in Minnesota on Oct. 5 will shatter the "MNF" record.
Whether you're sick of Favre or not, football fans have to love how this ongoing drama is gonna play out on a big screen TV. Just keep some perspective about it and avoid any major injuries when the communal jersey burn takes place in front of Favre's Steakhouse, OK?
-- Thomas Rozwadowski, firstname.lastname@example.org