As a member of Mississippi State’s 2010 recruiting class, Dylan Favre packed video game-like statistics — nearly 5,600 yards passing and 63 touchdowns his senior season alone — into his smallish sub-6-0 frame. Those stats, though, were far down on the list of reasons his signing attracted more attention than it probably should’ve; his uncle, of course, is retired (probably) future NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre.
While the surname may have opened a few additional doors, the younger Favre actually set out to make his own set of footprints in which to walk before his collegiate career even began, opting for the Bulldogs over interest from, among others, his uncle’s alma mater Southern Miss.
After a freshman season Favre described as “the most miserable year of my life”, the sophomore quarterback is beginning to carve out his own niche on the football field. In MSU’s spring game last weekend, Favre hit on 17-of-26 passes for 199 yards with one touchdown and one interception, while also adding 41 yards on the ground. He also led his Maroon team on what turned out to be the game-winning drive with just over a minute left.
All in all, it was the perfect ending to what was a very solid and, yes, somewhat surprising set of spring sessions for Favre.
“To have the ball and a chance to drive the team down and take the lead was awesome,” Favre said according to the Biloxi Sun Herald. “You could not ask for more. It was a great opportunity for me. It was live, and I had a maroon jersey on and we had 36,000 in the stands.
“Overall, I think spring went well. I definitely improved from the first practice to the final practice. I would say I have to learn how to manage the game better and become more of a quarterback. I don’t have to score a touchdown every time I touch the ball.”
So, could there actually be a starting Favre on a football in 2011? While incumbent Chris Relf is back as a fifth-year senior, head coach Dan Mullen said the competition between Relf, Favre and Tyler Russell is “wide open” and too close to call right now, and may not be decided until the days leading up to the opener. Regardless, it appears Favre will be in the thick of things once summer camp opens and, until a starter is named, has to be considered a legitimate contender for the job.
“That may not be figured out until Sept. 1,” he said of officially settling on a starter. “But I think Dylan has the swagger and confidence to play. What he has to do is be a quarterback who utilizes the offense. He needs not to put the pressure on himself and let others make plays.”
All that said, it would be more than a little surprising if Relf weren’t under center when the ’11 season opened, with Russell and Favre — in that order — backing him up. Then again, with that surname involved, you just never really know what’s going to happen.