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Favre tells the Jets he's hanging up the cleats, really

The New York Jets confirmed this morning that quarterback Brett Favre has told them he'll retire.

Team owner Woody Johnson said he spoke with Favre this morning (Wednesday).

"I had a great conversation with Brett this morning. Considering that he came from a totally different environment and joined our team during training camp, his performance last season was extraordinary," said Johnson in a statement on the Jets' Web site.

"Brett, Deanna and his family will always be a part of the Jets family," he added.

Jets' General Manager Mike Tannenbaum said in a statement that he appreciated what Favre brought to the team.

"When we acquired Brett, we knew we would get everything he had. He took the time to mentor younger players and his competitiveness and enthusiasm at practice and during games was contagious," Tannenbaum said.

Favre himself has told ESPN he would not meet with reporters, like he did last March when he cried at his first retirement announcement.

That was before he un-retired, and accused Packers' General Manager Ted Thompson of pushing him out the door.

However, a media conference call is expected at 5 p.m. with the future hall-of-famer.

When Favre tried to return to Packer training camp in August, the team traded him to New York for a conditional draft pick.

The 39-year-old quarterback told ESPN's Ed Werder he had no regrets about finishing his 18-year NFL career in the Big Apple, instead of with the Packers - where he won a Super Bowl and three MVP awards over 16 seasons.

Favre completed 343 passes for 3,472 yards for the Jets last season, with 22 touchdown passes and 22 interceptions. His quarterback rating was a mediocre 81.

Favre was the toast-of-the-town in New York for awhile until the Jets lost their final five games and missed the playoffs. That got coach Eric Mangini fired.

Today, Favre went out of his way to praise Mangini and Jets ownership.

Favre also praised teammates Thomas Jones and Kerry Rhodes by name after both publicly criticized him following the Jets' late-season collapse. ESPN also said Favre's agent informally talked with the Jets about simply releasing him and the Jets, "respectfully declined."

It would have let Favre sign with a team like Minnesota, one of Green Bay's biggest rivals. Favre reportedly wanted to follow his ex-teammates Ryan Longwell, Robert Ferguson, and Darren Sharper to the Vikings a year ago. Thompson fought that off.

ESPN said Favre told them in late December he would probably retire instead of trying to recover from a bad shoulder.