Brett Favre never played a snap as a SEC quarterback, but the Southern Miss product may have learned one of the most valuable lesson of his football life from former Auburn coach Pat Dye anyway.
Long-time NFL writer Peter King released his final “Monday Morning Quarterback” article for Sports Illustrated on Monday, and buried beneath three decades worth of thank yous and thoughtful anecdotes was a gem of a story about what the Hall of Fame quarterback had shared with King during a telephone call on Saturday.
Favre told King of a recent stay at Dye’s home in Alabama as the Green Bay Packers star participated in one of Auburn legend Bo Jackson’s charity bike rides. During his time with Dye, Favre appeared to get a glimpse into the future of what life is like for a retired football hero in his late 70s. And it appeared to humble him in a way that may impact him for the rest of his life.
King shared the story beautifully:
“Favre did a charity bike ride for Bo Jackson at Auburn, and retired Auburn football coach Pat Dye insisted Favre stay at Dye’s house. Dye took Favre for a house tour. He saw all the trophies and framed pictures, and listened to Dye tell his stories. When the 78-year-old Dye showed him the memorabilia, he said, “Here’s the stuff that really doesn’t matter.”
Favre said to me on Saturday night: “And it hit me. Someday, if I’m lucky, I’m gonna be 78 years old, and the crowd’s not going to be cheering anymore. The roar of the stadium will be long gone. Hopefully, like Pat, I’ll go out and plant a Japanese maple on my property and just live life. Talk to my family, my friends. That was a moment, with Pat, where I thought, ‘So that’s what it’s going to be like.’ And it’s good.”
Dye’s coaching days are well in the rear-view mirror, but it’s pretty clear he’s not done teaching football players valuable lessons. Well done, Coach Dye.