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Jennings knows he isn't first ex-Packer to don purple

Mar 15, 2013 -- 8:42pm
Photo/Associated Press 
Greg Jennings saw his old quarterback, Brett Favre, as an opponent in 2009 and 2010.

GREEN BAY – Greg Jennings knew the list.

As the now-former Green Bay Packers wide receiver stood at a podium at Winter Park, in front of a purple background talking about his new team, the Minnesota Vikings, he flashed that smile folks around these parts had seen so many times in the last seven years.

Since joining the Packers as a second-round pick in 2006, Jennings had seen plenty of ex-Packers in purple: Safety Darren Sharper, kicker Ryan Longwell, and a certain future Hall of Fame quarterback. (And Robert Ferguson, and Javon Walker – although not Bryce Paup, Paul Coffman, Greg Koch or Esera Tuaolo, a few of the many others who’d crossed the border.)

In fact, in his introductory press conference Friday evening, Jennings was asked point-blank about what he’d seen Brett Favre go through and whether entered his mind as he mulled jumping to the Packers’ NFC North division rival.

“Concerns?” Jennings said, smiling. Later, he added, “It is a business, and this has happened before. I'm not the first Packer player to jump on this side."

No, he is not. In recent years, the Vikings have added or courted more than a few players from their rivals, having unsuccessfully tried to lure defensive end Aaron Kampman and fullback William Henderson in addition to signing Sharper, Longwell and Favre as free agents. No ex-Packers player donning the Vikings uniform generated a more over-the-top emotional response than Favre, who was traded to the New York Jets during the summer of 2008, then retired from the Jets, was released and spent the 2009 and 2010 seasons with the Vikings, getting Minnesota to the NFC Championship Game in his first season.

"It will be business as usual," Jennings said of what it will be like to play the Packers. "It will be a little more meaningful to get a win over those guys than anybody (else) on the schedule.”

As for why he chose the Vikings, Jennings said, "You’re looking for something that’s going to fit like a glove, something that you’re going to be comfortable. ... It was just a family feel. It felt comfortable. And that's what you're looking for. Be comfortable, be able to be yourself.”


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