If Brett Favre plans to show for the Green Bay Packers' training camp, he'll need permission from the NFL. And as of Friday afternoon there was no sign he had petitioned the league for reinstatement.
A person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press that the letter, which must be filed with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, had not been received as of late Friday afternoon. The person requested anonymity because league and team officials were withholding comment until Favre actually filed his letter.
The step is considered a formality, but an important one: Favre can't return until Goodell receives and approves the request.
The NFL Network reported Friday morning that Favre told Packers general manager Ted Thompson he plans to report to training camp and could file his reinstatement letter as early as Friday, a move perhaps designed to force the team to quickly trade the three-time MVP.
Speculation on a potential new home for Favre has centered on Tampa Bay, but the New York Jets also are emerging as a potential trade partner for the Packers. Jets quarterback Chad Pennington said Friday that general manager Mike Tannenbaum told him the team has talked to the Packers about Favre.
It didn't sound like Tannenbaum assured Pennington that the Jets aren't interested.
"Bottom line, an organization has to take a look at every player available in this league. Period," Pennington said. "A general manager and a head coach is going to do everything they can do to make their team as good as they can make it. That's their job."
Tannenbaum would not confirm conversations with the Packers.
Pennington, who already is competing with Kellen Clemens for the starting job in Jets camp, said he wasn't overreacting to the Jets' potential trade for Favre.
"My whole focus is on this camp," Pennington said. "Winning this starting quarterback battle, so I don't really have any thoughts. It's part of the business: speculation, calls, one organization calling another about players. There's nothing to be said. As a player, you never react until it's actually done."
Earlier Friday, Jets coach Eric Mangini dodged questions about the team's interest in Favre.
"I'm happy with the quarterbacks we have and we look at a lot of different scenarios every night," Mangini said. "And trust me when I tell you that we look into a lot of different scenarios every night. It's just normal operating procedure for us."
That's just about the only thing normal in the ongoing saga surrounding Favre's football future. And if he follows through with his intention to show up to camp, Favre would likely become an even bigger distraction to a team that's spent the past several offseasons dealing with his constant waffling on whether to retire.
The Packers committed to moving on with Aaron Rodgers after Favre retired in early March, led them to believe he was coming back in late March, then decided to stay retired &
until he apparently changed his mind once again in recent weeks.
Packers players are scheduled to move into their dorm rooms on Saturday, and their first team meeting is scheduled for Sunday morning. Their first practice is Monday morning.
Team officials did not immediately return telephone calls from The Associated Press. Packers coach Mike McCarthy is scheduled to address the media on Saturday.
In an interview with Fox News last week, Favre said it was "tempting" to show up to Packers camp to call the Packers' "bluff."
But, Favre added: "I don't want to go back there just to stick it to them."
Packers president and CEO Mark Murphy reiterated Thursday that if Favre were to return to the Packers, it would be in "a different role" &
presumably not as the starter.
"But what's going to happen if that occurs, we'll have to look and see the situation at the time," Murphy said, speaking with reporters after Thursday's Packers shareholders meeting. "That's a little bit of a technicality. But I guess there's two questions. We have said we would welcome him back. But whether he will come back is another question. And a lot of it goes back to, we want to work with Brett, and be fair to him and help give him what he wants,"
Once Favre's request to be reinstated is approved by the commissioner, the Packers must place him on their active roster or release him. Thompson has said the team has no plans to release Favre.
The Packers have filed tampering charges against the Minnesota Vikings, suspecting that interest from their division rival was the main reason Favre suddenly changed his mind on retirement.
Favre's rights belong to the Packers until his contract expires after the 2010 season.
Favre ripped Thompson during the interview for being untruthful with him on a series of personnel moves in recent years. But Murphy said Thursday he didn't think a potential return by Favre would cause tension within the team.
"I don't think so," Murphy said. "We have such respect for Brett and what he's meant to this organization, there will be no tension. But that's a call that Ted and Mike have to make."
AP Sports Writer Dennis Waszak Jr. contributed to this report from Hempstead, N.Y.
Favre has work to do