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Brett Favre says that he loved playing in the NFL but that the game took a physical toll and he won't return, even though league sources told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter that the St. Louis Rams reached out to his agent.
"It's flattering, but you know there's no way I'm going to do that," Favre said in an interview with Sports Talk 570 powered by ESPN in Washington.
The Rams lost Sam Bradford to season-ending knee surgery earlier this week.
Rams coach Jeff Fisher was asked Thursday afternoon whether his team reached out to Favre's agent.
"During the process I didn't disclose any information and I feel no need to disclose information after the process," Fisher said. "That's how we are. That's consistent with our policy and our philosophy."
Asked if that was a denial, Fisher said: "It's I don't talk about the process."
Favre wouldn't say which team or teams reached out to his agent, Bus Cook, but the 44-year-old made it clear that he is enjoying spending time with his family -- including his 3-year-old grandson -- and doesn't feel physically able to compete in the NFL. In fact, when asked about concussions, he expressed fear that he has been affected.
"I don't remember my daughter playing soccer, playing youth soccer, one summer," he said. "I don't remember that. I got a pretty good memory, and I have a tendency like we all do to say, 'Where are my glasses?' and they're on your head. This was pretty shocking to me that I couldn't remember my daughter playing youth soccer, just one summer, I think. I remember her playing basketball, I remember her playing volleyball, so I kind of think maybe she only played a game or two. I think she played eight. So that's a little bit scary to me. For the first time in 44 years, that put a little fear in me."
He said he has considered seeing a doctor about the issue but doesn't know how much can be done at this point. He said he tries to stay in shape these days, not to play football but to be able to spend time with his family. He said it's a challenge.
"I think after 20 years God only knows the toll," he said of football.
Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Ryan Pickett, one of the few players remaining in Green Bay that played with Favre, said he saw the report on the Rams' interest earlier on ESPN.
|Brett Favre, who last played in 2010 with the Vikings, made it clear in a radio interview Thursday that he's retired for good.|
"I didn't know what to think about that. I mean he's been out of football for a couple of years, so I was shocked. That's crazy," he said.
Favre said he watches NFL games, but not many, and doesn't ever think he could play quarterback better at this point than the players currently in the league.
This season, he has been coaching a high school football team and may continue to do it, but he stressed he's not trying to just hang around the game. He said he enjoys teaching kids and it's something to pass the time. He added that he doesn't feel the need to be around a pro team or be very involved in analysis of the NFL.
"The NFL was everything I thought it would be and then some. It was tough, it was fun, it was rewarding," he said. "But I thought I didn't need to stick around, I didn't need to be a part of it to feel like I still had a purpose in life."
Favre, who hasn't played in the league since 2010, said he's "content" with his life away from the game.
"My family took a backseat for 20 years. My 14-year-old daughter plays volleyball and is in the ninth grade and will be playing again the next three years. I've taken trips that I never thought I'd take. I've gone to Yellowstone, and I've gone to Glacier National Park. ... We've gone down to the Bahamas, we've done things that really everybody in my family just kind of waited for."
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, only one player since the 1970 AFL/NFL merger has missed more than two NFL seasons and come back to play at age 40 or older: Steve DeBerg with the Atlanta Falcons in 1998 (age 44).
The Rams ended up signing veteran quarterback Brady Quinn, who had been released by the New York Jets earlier this week, and brought back Austin Davis, who spent the 2012 season and the 2013 preseason with the team. Both quarterbacks will back up Kellen Clemens, who will get his first start this season when the Rams host the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night.
Davis, who, like Favre, played at the University of Southern Mississippi, holds most of the school's passing records. He also has Cook as his agent.
Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman said Thursday he feels like he missed out on a golden opportunity, a one-time chance to play against Favre on Monday.
"Man, that would have been so cool, just to say I did it," Sherman said. "I would have loved that, just to have the opportunity to play against him one time."
And what if he came up with an interception off Favre?
"Oh, that football would have been up on my mantel,'' Sherman said.
ESPN.com Rams reporter Nick Wagoner, ESPN.com Packers reporter Rob Demovsky and ESPN.com Seahawks reporter Terry Blount contributed to this report.