Loyalty in sports falls under the oxymoron category these days.
You can blame teams for not ponying up enough cash to keep their players. You can blame certain players for being greedy. One thing is for certain, money ALWAYS trumps loyalty in the pro ranks.
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Ask Cleveland Cavaliers fans about LeBron on the Heat. Ask Orioles fans about Mike Mussina on the Yankees. Ask Patriots fans about Adam Vinatieri on the Colts. Ask Magic fans (are their Magic fans?) about Shaq on the Lakers. Ask Lakers fans about Derek Fisher on the Thunder. Ask Browns fans about the late Art Modell.
There are certain transactions in sports that shouldn’t happen, but always do, simply because cash and ego always rule.
On the same day, two of the biggest icons in the history of the NFL’s black and blue division (basically THE DIVISION in pro football), the NFC North, are being tugged one way or another.
Packers legend Brett Favre, who un-retired to land on the Jets, but wanted to play in Minnesota all along and eventually did, is being invited back into the organization. When he signed with the Vikings in August of 2009, ESPN speculated that Favre wouldn’t be welcomed back into Green Bay until 25 years down the line or so. Well, it’s 2013 by my watch and Packers CEO Mark Murphy said this week that he hopes to have Favre “back involved in the organization soon.” This will inevitably lead to Favre taking a “consulting” role with Green Bay which will eventually lead to him spurning the Packers front office in five years for a “special assistant to the assistant of the GM” role with the Lions.
While fences are being mended in Green Bay, Chicago Bears fans are refreshing their Adam Schefter Twitter feed non-stop today in hopes of good news (i.e. Urlacher going to a team on the East or West coast instead of a division rival), which will likely end in ugly news. Vikings head coach Leslie Frasier said on NFL Network’s NFL AM show Wednesday morning that Minnesota was not currently pursuing Bears icon Brian Urlacher. This was contrary to many reports Tuesday that Urlacher was closing in on a deal with the Vikings. Should we believe Frasier? Probably not. But there is just one thing certain in this ordeal: Urlacher won’t be back with the Bears.
Follow Metro Boston columnist and sports editor Matt Burke on Twitter @BurkeMetroBOS