As a long-time Green Bay Packers star (and short-term Minnesota Vikings standout), Brett Favre handed the Chicago Bears their fair share of losses over the years. In fact, to describe Favre as a thorn-in-the-side feels like I’m selling him short.
But what if I told you that something Favre did while sticking it to the Bears all those years might finally come in handy and help Chicago’s football team win some games moving forward?
Aaron Nagler covers the Green Bay Packers for PackersNews.com and unearthed some interesting video of Favre explaining to Jon Gruden (who was at one time Favre’s position coach in Green Bay) how he came up with run-pass option plays while fooling around in practice:
Here's Favre telling Gruden how he came up with RPOs in GB because he was bored in practice and how he ran them in a game before telling Mike Sherman because he wanted to prove that they would work before being told not to. pic.twitter.com/QehChLkWrO
— Aaron Nagler (@AaronNagler) June 10, 2018
RPOs are expected to be a staple of Matt Nagy’s offense in Chicago, as they were in Kansas City. And if you’re a believer in the concept that the apple never falls too far from the tree, then it won’t take long to follow the links here. Nagy worked for Andy Reid in Kansas City and Philadelphia. Reid worked with Gruden while coaching Favre in Green Bay. Boom, that was easy enough. Good coaches take good plays from each other all the time, and getting help from a Hall of Fame player can only help matters.
Favre’s implementation of RPOs don’t look exactly like they did back when he was messing aroudn with them, but think about what they are intended to do. RPOs are designed to give the quarterback an option of handing it off to a running back or throwing a quick, open pass depending on what he sees from the defense after the snap.
This isn’t a brand new idea by any stretch. In fact, the concept has always been there … and it’s never not killed the Bears. I’ve literally lost count of how many times Favre (or Aaron Rodgers, for that matter) has ditched the original run play to throw a quick slant that turns into a chunk play. It’s as if the Bears defense has no idea how to defend a play they have been going up against twice a year for nearly two decades.
No wonder new tight end Trey Burton called the plays unguardable, because that’s exactly what they have been. Bears fans have had an up-close-and-personal look at how indefensible these plays can be. The only difference now is that they’ll be running them, and with a few additional wrinkles from the Bears’ new coaching staff.
So thanks, Brett. After all these years, you owed us one.