If it wasn't about the money, if it was simply about trying to get one more ring, Brett Favre would be wearing a horseshoe on his helmet right now. It's not Favre's fault, it's mostly Bill Polian's fault, but the Colts could have avoided an awful 0-2 start, and could have created the craziest media storm in NFL history, by opting with an old Brett Favre over an old Kerry Collins.
Is it too late? The Colts don't have a young quarterback worth trying out right now. Curtis Painter has shown everyone from Jim Irsay to Rex Ryan that he's not an NFL starting quarterback, and Kerry Collins has been nothing short of awful in his first two starts as the Colts QB. The Colts roster right now has a lot of veterans and young players who can win now, but an 0-3 start will be tough to come back from, even in the AFC South.
But if you bring in Brett Favre now, thing could start to get better. Unless Peyton Manning has a miraculous recovery the Colts are going to lose to the Steelers on Sunday and fall to 0-3, but after that the Colts schedule softens up. @ Tampa Bay, vs Kansas City, @ Cincinnati, @ New Orleans, @ Tennessee, vs Atlanta, vs Jacksonville, takes the Colts into their bye week. With Kerry Collins you're looking at best a 2-5 record in those games, taking the colts to 2-8 and eliminated from the playoffs before Thanksgiving. With Favre, 5-2, 4-3 is more likely, putting the Colts at .500 or close to it around Thanksgiving, and right in the middle of an AFC playoff race that should be wide open at the bottom.
Colts fans seem up to it, and they paid 750 million to build Lucas Oil Stadium and have filled it every game it's been open. Indiana sports fans have too much high school and college basketball, as well as a lot of college football to worry about, so much so that rooting for a losing team in a down year isn't something they're interested in doing. No teams fans are interested in the sort of futility that the Collins/Caldwell Colts have presented.
A lot of people have said Favre would be bad for the Colts and pointed out reasons like PR issues. What PR issues? Last I checked the Colts were one of the most well respected franchises in the NFL, and considered to be the single most Christian franchise in professional sports. If by "PR issues" people mean the hiring of Jim Tressel, then I guess the Raiders, Seahawks, Dolphins, Panthers, and every other franchise has some serious "PR issues" to deal with right now.
The other things I heard were money, better QB options, and locker room issues. As for money, the Colts gave Kerry Collins $4 million this year and still remained $8 million under. Favre can't expect 2010 salary numbers, so I'm pretty sure the Colts could have, and still can afford him. As for better QB options; Carson Palmer would require the trading of a second round pick, and David Garrard is still not better than an old Brett Favre. Finally, is Brett Favre really a bad locker room guy? I know Thomas Jones complained about him, but other than that I never really heard anything bad about him. I know that guys like Jared Allen loved him, and the Packers players always respected him.
Favre is the only hope in Indianapolis right now. It's the only hope for the 2011 Colts, the only hope for Jim Caldwell's job, and a move that could help Bill Polian restore some of the general managing respect that he has rapidly lost since the Colts Super Bowl XLI victory.
That is unless the Colts don't want to win this year, which may very well be a possibility. Drafting at the bottom of a decades worth of drafts have left the Colts with a thin roster of talent, and perhaps Polian understands that the only way the Colts win again in this Manning window is with a team made up of the talented veterans he already has, and top flight young talent. Similar to the Shanahan, Elway, Davis Broncos of the late 1990's.