Wednesday July 29th, 2009

Minnesota coach Brad Childress, jilted at the altar Tuesday afternoon by Brett Favre telling him he wasn't going to play for the Vikings in 2009, said he had nothing against the quarterback for dragging the story out all offseason and then saying "no" on the eve of training camp.

"I'm not let down," Childress told SI.com Tuesday night. "Not at all. Brett was open with me all the way through this process, and so I can't be mad at him. He was honest with me."

Childress said he and Favre exchanged several text messages the last two days and then spoke this afternoon. That's when Favre told him he couldn't make the commitment to play for his third team in three years. "You've just got to be able to commit to this game," Childress said. "And there's a ramping-up process involved. You know, last year all of a sudden he's there in New York, and he's playing, and in October he's out of gas. This offseason he worked hard and he was in the best shape of the last five years. And his arm was coming around. But it's not just making the physical commitment. You also have to be committed deep down. And that was going to be hard for Brett."

When Childress and Favre spoke Tuesday afternoon, Favre sounded disappointed. Childress said to him: "What's that tone [of voice]? Come on. Nobody died here."

But clearly, Favre's decision is a blow to the Vikings, a team with a premiere defense and no certain answer at quarterback. Now Childress will head to training camp with incumbent quarterback Tarvaris Jackson, Sage Rosenfels and John David Booty, knowing that their office tried all offseason to upgrade the position.

Childress, however, doesn't think he has lost his quarterbacks or his team. "This doesn't say anything negative about Sage," said Childress, referring to the April acquisition from Houston. "We had a chance to go after a Hall of Fame quarterback who knows the division better than anybody, who's very comfortable in our offense ... What's the downside? There's no downside to competition as far as I'm concerned. It's the nature of the beast in this game. Our guards had to compete when Steve Hutchinson got here. Our defensive ends had to compete when Jared Allen got here. So no, I'm not sorry we went after Favre."

BANKS: A fitting end to Favre era

KING: Favre fools us again

KING: Same story: It's over ... for now

PERLOFF: Please don't go, Brett

GALLERY: Favre's greatest moments

VAULT: Favre on SI covers

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