Colts owner tweets he's in Hattiesburg
HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay posted on his Twitter account that he was in Brett Favre's hometown, but the quarterback's agent says he has not heard of any interest from the team.
The Colts owner might have just been taking his Twitter followers for a ride. The team said Monday it was "99.5 percent" sure that Irsay was not in Hattiesburg on Sunday.
The 41-year-old Favre retired in the offseason after a 20-year career and lives in Hattiesburg, but Irsay appears to be sniffing around because Peyton Manning had neck surgery in May and hasn't played in the preseason, casting doubt on his availability for the start of the season. Manning has played in 227 consecutive games.
"Brad, I'm in Hattiesburg ... is it right or left at the Firechief?" Irsay tweeted Sunday, presumably referring to former Minnesota Vikings coach Brad Childress, who traveled to Mississippi last July when he tried to convince Favre to return for the 2010 season.
Last Colts QB To Start Not Named Peyton
Peyton Manning has started every regular-season (208) and postseason (19) game for the Colts since being drafted in 1998. The last QB not named Peyton Manning to start a regular-season game for the Colts was current 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh (pictured, in a 39-28 loss at Minnesota on Dec. 21, 1997).
Favre's longtime agent Bus Cook said he hadn't spoken with the former quarterback in a few days, but the "last time I saw him he was on his tractor mowing the back forty."
"I'm in Mississippi,down at the crossroads....looking 4 that deal Mr. Johnson cut so many years ago," Irsay wrote in another tweet.
Southern legend has it that blues musician Robert Johnson, who wrote the song "Cross Road Blues," sold his soul to the devil in trade for prowess on the guitar.
Though Favre has repeatedly said he's retired during the offseason, any Colts interest would make some sense because of the delicate nature of Manning's injury. That's a scary proposition for the Colts, who have little experience behind him.
"I certainly want to be out there, and it's hard to keep track of the hours I've spent in rehab," Manning said on Saturday. "I was short-changed a little bit by the lockout and I'm going to need every bit of the next two weeks, and then I can give you more of an update with where I am."
Curtis Painter has started both preseason games, completing 8 of 16 passes for 95 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. In Friday night's 16-3 loss to Washington, Painter managed only one first down and couldn't get the offense past its 29 despite playing the entire first half.
Painter hasn't played in a regular-season game since 2009.
On Saturday, Irsay acknowledged on his Twitter feed that the Colts might not have their four-time MVP quarterback at the start of the season. Manning signed a five-year, $90 million contract in July after the 4½-month lockout ended.
Favre is a three-time MVP and has thrown for more than 71,000 yards and 500 touchdowns, winning a Super Bowl with the Green Bay Packers along the way. But the famous gunslinger began to show some serious wear in 2010 with the Minnesota Vikings, throwing for 2,509 yards, 11 touchdowns and 19 interceptions in an injury-plagued season.
He also was dogged by allegations that he sent lewd photos and messages to a game-day hostess when both worked for the Jets in 2008, and was fined $50,000 by the NFL for failing to cooperate with the investigation.
But with Favre, anything seems possible. He retired with the Packers in 2008 and New York Jets in 2009 before deciding to continue playing. Favre has kept a low profile during the offseason, saying at a football camp at the University of Southern Mississippi that he wasn't sure of his future plans, though he insisted he was done playing football.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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