Minnesota Vikings coach Brad Childress called into a Minneapolis radio station Wednesday morning to shoot down a report that the team has given quarterback Brett Favre a deadline to decide whether or not to come out of retirement.
"Absolutely not," Childress told KFAN while driving to the Vikings' headquarters at Winter Park. "Maybe by Deanna (Favre's wife) or somebody like that, but certainly not from me. Not even -- not even close. Don't know where that would have dropped out of the sky from."
Asked if the report was fabricated, Childress said: "I don't know how you guys in that industry go about your sourcing. 'A source that a source said.' I don't know. It's questionable. Very questionable."
ESPN reported Monday that the Vikings had given Favre a deadline of this week to make up his mind about joining the team or staying in retirement. The network reported Tuesday night that the Vikings had temporarily suspended their pursuit of the future Hall of Fame quarterback.
Childress, who said he never made any trips to Mississippi to visit Favre despite several reports that he had -- "I can tell you that I haven't been to Mississippi since I was recruiting an athlete in Jackson back in the '80s." -- downplayed his and his team's interest in the quarterback.
"I think you would have to say that it was overstated when I'm making a trip to Hattiesburg and I'm reading the crawl across ESPN from my office at Winter Park," Childress said. "I would think that might be a slight stretch of the truth.
"I always thought that David Copperfield was a great magician, but I haven't been able to do that one yet."
However, when asked about Favre's state of health, particularly the right shoulder that reportedly was surgically repaired last month, Childress intimated that he would be interested in receiving a personal look at the quarterback in a workout.
"If, in fact, he's had that surgery, I'm real anxious to see what he has left in that cannon because he had a pretty good arm, as we all know," Childress said.
As for any effect the Favre talk has had on Sage Rosenfels and Tarvaris Jackson, the two quarterbacks expected to compete for the Vikings' starting job, Childress said he can't worry about that too much because his job is to make the team better.
"I've talked to Sage and Tarvaris, and they're competitors," Childress said. "Do they like any of the conversations? Absolutely not. But they know this: I'm charged with adding and subtracting players from this team to make us better. ... If this is going to make us better down the road and it has a chance to happen, then I'm going to take care of the Minnesota Vikings."