GREEN BAY, Wis. -- He's afraid of getting booed. He's not afraid of getting booed.
Whichever it is -- and depending on who you believe, it could be either -- the only way to find out how fans will react to former Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre is to actually bring him back to Lambeau Field.
That's what made it surprising recently to hear Packers president Mark Murphy say the team won’t retire Favre’s No. 4 this season.
In fact, after saying the team and Favre tried to get together for an appearance last season, Murphy said he was not even sure whether Favre will make an appearance in 2014.
If Favre is not concerned about how fans will receive him, which is what he said Monday during an appearance on ESPN 1000 in Chicago, then why delay things any further?
The longer this goes on, the more of an issue it could become.
The time is right to bring back Favre -- if not to retire his jersey this season, then at least to the Packers' family by way of an appearance and introduction during a game at Lambeau. Then retire his jersey and put him in the Packers Hall of Fame in 2015 before he goes into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2016.
Those who are still smarting over Favre's decision in 2008 to unretire and try to force his way back on to the team, or his decision in 2009 to play for the rival Minnesota Vikings, are going to boo whether it's this season or next or the one after that.
Time won't change that, even if it has changed things between Favre and the organization, according to him.
"I do believe time heals wounds in a lot of ways," Favre said Monday in his radio interview. "I'm fine with coming back. I know it's going to be a great ceremony when we are going to do it. It's just a matter of when. From my end, everything’s good."