Rodgers and Favre share stage at NFL Honors ceremony

Feb. 2, 2013

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Brett Favre, left, and Aaron Rodgers present the comeback player of the year award at the 2nd Annual NFL Honors on Saturday in New Orleans. / AP


Aaron Rodgers and Brett Favre haven’t always had the warmest of relationships, but that could be changing.

The history between the Green Bay Packers’ MVP quarterbacks made for a slight surprise — and some light-hearted comedy — on Saturday night when both Rodgers and Favre took the stage at the NFL Honors award ceremony to present the league’s comeback player of the year award.

Before giving the award to Denver quarterback Peyton Manning, however, the two delivered a few playful quips during their introductory dialogue.

It started with Favre leading in with a quick line of “You know Aaron everyone loves it when a great player makes a comeback.”

Rodgers quickly responded by saying, “Well, not always. Sometimes they wish great players would just retire and stay retired,” jokingly knocking Favre’s indecisiveness after his retirement following the 2007 and 2008 seasons.

Favre, who finished his career in 2010 with the rival Minnesota Vikings, laughed along with the audience before saying, “Good to see you, too, Aaron.”

The two then shared a handshake and partial hug with Rodgers adding, “That was awkward.”

While likely scripted, the dialogue between the two quarterbacks illustrates what’s been a rocky relationship between the two since Rodgers supplanted Favre as the Packers’ quarterback with Favre’s first retirement.

When Favre opted for an 11th-hour return at the start of the 2008 preseason, the Packers chose to move forward Rodgers, which led to a few verbal jabs thrown from the three-time NFL MVP toward his successor over the next few years.

Favre has never really bad-mouthed Rodgers but laced some of his appraisals of Rodgers' work with a certain level of passive-aggressiveness, including a comment in October 2011 when asked about Rodgers’ early successes.

“I'm going to be honest, I was not surprised. The biggest surprise to me would be that he didn't do it sooner,” said Favre, who also mentioned the caliber of team Rodgers inherited when pointing out his strengths.

While Rodgers has mainly kept his comments about working with Favre to a minimum, he has spoken on how the two no longer have a relationship despite being relatively close during their three seasons together in Green Bay.

Moments after receiving the award, however, Manning quickly referenced how happy he was to see Favre and Rodgers together on stage while also alluding to 2012 first-overall pick Andrew Luck replacing him in Indianapolis this year.

“What an honor it is to receive this award from two of the best quarterbacks of all time,” Manning said. “It sure is great to see the two of them up here together. It’s great for football. I feel pretty confident me and Andrew Luck will be up here presenting this award together.”

Favre is in New Orleans to be a part of the NFL Network’s pregame coverage scheduled for Sunday morning. Both he and Rodgers posed for a photo backstage in a tweet from NFL public relations representative Brian McCarthy.

Packers linebacker Clay Matthews was also on hand, giving out the award for defensive rookie of the year, which went to Carolina linebacker Luke Kuechly. The field also included Packers’ cornerback Casey Hayward, who finished third in the balloting after having six interceptions this season.

The league’s MVP in 2012, Rodgers was also up for the NFL MVP and offensive player of the year, which were both awarded to Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson. and follow him on Twitter @WesHod.

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