Before joining Vikings, Brett Favre almost landed with the Bucs

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Brett Favre
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Brett Favre /

The former Minnesota Vikings quarterback almost suited up for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

For good and for bad, the two years Brett Favre spent with the Minnesota Vikings will be remembered forever. Before he ended up with the Vikings, however, Favre almost landed with a former division rival of the purple and gold.

Prior to joining Minnesota’s roster in 2009, Favre spent an uneventful year with the New York Jets. The Jets acquired the Hall of Fame quarterback a few weeks before the start of the 2008 regular season in a trade with the Green Bay Packers.

Unsurprisingly, New York was not the only team involved in trade talks with the Packers about Favre in 2008. Favre’s old friend, Jon Gruden, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were apparently very close to making a deal with Green Bay to acquire the veteran quarterback.

Brett Favre in a Minnesota Vikings uniform might not exist if he landed in Tampa

A trade that would have sent Favre from the Packers to the Bucs in 2008 was reportedly so close that a bunch of Tampa Bay’s coaches went out at night to celebrate after they believed the Hall of Famer was about to become part of their roster.

But obviously, that’s not how things happened. In the end, Green Bay chose to trade Favre to a team that was in a different conference and wasn’t on their 2008 schedule in the Jets.

After the Bucs were unable to acquire the former Vikings quarterback, they ended up missing the playoffs in 2008 and that turned out to be Gruden’s last season as the team’s head coach. One has to imagine that things probably would’ve turned out differently for Gruden and Tampa Bay in 2008 if Favre was starting under center for them.

Gruden and Favre first worked together when the former Bucs head coach was an assistant with the Packers from 1992 to 1994. When he left Green Bay, Gruden continued to use an offensive scheme (west coast) that produced three straight MVPs for Favre in the mid-1990s.

If the veteran quarterback ended up in Tampa, he likely wouldn’t have had a hard time adjusting to their offense. A stint with the Bucs and Gruden could have possibly looked similar to the season Favre had with Minnesota in 2009 when he threw for 4,202 yards, 33 touchdowns, and seven interceptions.

If Favre actually did get dealt to the Bucs in 2008, it’s hard to imagine him still signing with the Vikings just a year later. Luckily for Minnesota, the trade with Tampa Bay fell through and the Hall of Fame signal-caller ended up in New York, which then led to him landing with the purple and gold in 2009.