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Brett Favre: 'I admit I was wrong for retiring early'

In interview on "In Depth with Graham Bensinger" airing this weekend, former NFL quarterback Brett Favre said he should not have retired early in 2008.
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In an interview on "In Depth with Graham Bensinger" airing this weekend, former NFL quarterback Brett Favre said he was wrong to retire from the Packers in March 2008.

Favre told Bensinger that when he announced his retirement at a press conference, he wasn't fully committed to his decision but made it because the organization needed to know.

"I should have stood my ground and not retired early," Favre said. "...Mike [McCarthy] wanted to know and that’s - as a head coach of a team or Ted Thompson’s job as a GM, I think, rightfully so, they need to know which direction they’re going to go in. But there was nothing in the rulebook that said I had to give them an answer until the day of the training camp."

Favre went on to be traded to the New York Jets, where he played for a season, before spending the final two years of his career with the Minnesota Vikings

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Bensinger asked Favre what advice he would give for Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, who is currently facing retirement rumors.

"I would ask him to ask himself, 'Okay, do you think you still could play at a high level?' No one else can answer that. Only he can. And if the answer is yes, what also I would say would be, 'Do you think there’s any chance in November of next year or the following off-season that you will say, regardless if I don’t play that I know I’m going to say what if? What if? If I went back, we would have won it. You know, what if I’d just went back for one more?’ If you say that, then you need to go back."

Favre was asked about his relationship with current Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who took over the position after Favre left Green Bay. Favre said he never felt threatened by Rodgers, but he knew there would be a day when Rodgers would become the starter.

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Favre said he feels he was a good mentor to Rodgers, but believes it's a misconception that the starting quarterback needs to be one to a backup.

"I think as a starter, my job’s hard enough to win ball games and be a leader," he said. "You're not a babysitter. And I'm not, by no means, talking about Aaron … Nowhere does it say that you have to take that guy under your wing and teach him the ropes."

On Tuesday, Favre told Fox Sports 1 that he feels Rodgers is "by far" the best quarterback in the NFL right now.

Favre is set to be inducted into the Packers Hall of Fame in July, which he said will "mean as much as anything I’ve accomplished in my career."

- Molly Geary