Brett Favre has been informed he requires surgery on his left ankle to play the upcoming season for the Minnesota Vikings, and the quarterback is deliberating whether to have the procedure or simply to end his 19-year NFL career by retiring.
Favre, who would turn 41 during the 2010 season, told ESPN the ankle injury that he suffered three months ago in the NFC Championship Game against the New Orleans Saints continues to be swollen and painful. That prompted tests to determine why healing had not occurred and Favre sent the results of those scans to orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews, who told the quarterback his opinion that surgery is unavoidable.
"We have spoken,'' Favre said in an e-mail. "To play again, I would need the surgery, as I suspected. This decision would be easy if not for my teammates and the fans and the entire Vikings staff. One year truly felt like 10 -- much like Green Bay for many years. That's what I was missing in my heart I suppose, a sense of belonging.''
Favre said he must determine whether his affection for the Vikings and his belief they are capable of winning the Super Bowl overrides his disdain for surgery. Favre would not reveal the exact diagnosis or the prognosis on how long it would take to recover from the surgery. While it previously seemed Favre was almost certain to return to the Vikings, his comments Friday reveal a player who appears to be seriously conflicted.