INDIANAPOLIS -- I sense a few folks at ESPN are going to be jealous about this one.
Brett Favre's first public comments since the night the Vikings season ended with a loss to New Orleans in the NFC title game won't come on the world-wide sports leader and they certainly won't be made to any Twin Cities media outlet. Instead, Favre will appear a week from today on the Jay Leno show on NBC. (Locally, that would be KARE, Ch. 11.) Leno's other guest that night will be Matthew McConaughey.
Hopefully, no one is surprised about any of this.
Last June, Favre broke a months-long silence by appearing on the debut of Joe Buck's show on HBO in New York. This time Favre will be among Leno's guests during the talk-show host's much-hyped return to the 10:35 p.m. slot. (Heck, if Conan could have landed Favre maybe he would still be around.)
NBC, like every other network, knows Favre is the rare athlete that can move the meter with more than just sports fans. That's why they were probably more than happy to agree to fly Favre and Co. on a private plane to L.A.
Obviously, the Vikings and their fans will watch with interest to get any hint on if Favre plans to return for a 20th season. It would be foolish to think Favre will announce any type of decision on the show but he likely will drop some solid hints about which way he's leaning.
Favre's appearance will be taped earlier in the day in Los Angeles, but it will run just as the league's new year is beginning. (Free agency starts at 11:01 p.m. next Thursday.) As we wrote today, the Vikings will be largely non-players in unrestricted free agency, so Favre going on Leno actually will give fans some good fodder.
Vikings officials, meanwhile, have made it clear they have put no timetable on Favre for when he needs to make up his mind about 2010. As a result, one has to figure the folks at Winter Park will be watching Favre's appearance with as much interest as their fan base.