Favre Chokes Up at Make-A-Wish Honor
Next game: Sunday, December 9 vs. Oakland
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- One of the NFL's certified tough guys just couldn't keep it together on Thursday.
Brett Favre was overcome with emotion during a short ceremony to present him with an award from the Make-A-Wish foundation. Favre was sharing the stage with 9-year-old Anna Walentowski, a "wish kid" Favre met three years ago.
"It's great to see her doing so well and looking so cute," Favre said. "I think it was three years ago, so my wish is granted."
Favre paused, and his voice cracked.
After apologizing for the interruption, Favre paused again to collect himself and gave the girl a hug.
Anna was in poor health when Favre first met her in 2004. She was diagnosed with Alexander Disease, a neurological disorder with a discouraging prognosis. With treatment, her condition appears to be improving.
Favre said that while the Walentowski family has a long road ahead of them, it gives him "tremendous" hope that she is doing better today.
"(It's) such a wish for me to see Anna doing better, and my hope is that all these kids can do better," Favre said. "We know that's not always the case, but I'm just so happy to see her standing beside me."
Favre said he wasn't entirely comfortable with being honored for his work with the Make-A-Wish foundation, which arranges celebrity meetings and other wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions.
"I get embarrassed doing this right now," Favre said. "It was great to meet Anna the first time around, and there was no cameras, besides family's cameras."
Favre was one of eight recipients of the Make-A-Wish foundation's Chris Greicius Celebrity Awards, which are named in honor of the 7-year-old boy whose 1980 wish to be a police officer inspired the foundation's creation.
RODGERS' RECOVERY: Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers is frustrated that a hamstring injury is keeping him out of practice this week. But with Favre recovering steadily from his bruised elbow and separated shoulder, at least he isn't missing out on a chance to start against Oakland on Sunday.
Rodgers performed admirably after Favre left last Thursday's game in Dallas, his first extended on-field action this season. But he injured his hamstring on the final play of practice on Tuesday -- the first time he's ever hurt a hamstring.
"This is the first I've ever strained a muscle below my waist," Rodgers said. "I've strained some obliques. Yeah, it's frustrating, because I keep myself in great shape, I run the scout team all the time, and the running I do every week in scout team is way more than what I did the other night. So it's unfortunate, but you've just got to roll with it and try and get healthy."
Rodgers said last week that he was happy that the team had kept only two quarterbacks on the roster this season, giving him extra practice time during the week. At the time, Rodgers didn't know the Packers were going to sign Craig Nall as their No. 3 quarterback over the weekend.
"I didn't, but I'm glad they brought Craig in," said Rodgers, speaking while Nall was sitting in the locker next to him. "I actually like him."
NOTES: Favre took about 70 percent of the passing plays in practice on Thursday and is still expected to start on Sunday. "I'm comfortable with Brett," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. "I think Brett's going to be fine for Sunday. I'm not taking anything out or eliminating anything that I would normally ask him to do." ... The Packers continued to shuffle their young guards in practice on Thursday, and McCarthy said he expected to determine his starters before Friday's practice. "That's something for our a.m. staff meeting, because I want to make sure those guys get the reps for tomorrow's practice," McCarthy said. ... McCarthy said he expected defensive end Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila (ankle) to play on Sunday, but the status of cornerback Charles Woodson (toe) remains up in the air. "He's picked up his pace in rehab, he's gone through his normal workouts as far as what he does on the treadmill and those types of things," McCarthy said. "So there's a lot of improvement there." ... Tackles Chad Clifton (knee) and Mark Tauscher (ankle) fully participated in practice on Thursday.
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)