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Favre will need ankle surgery before he plays again

Somewhere behind those Wranglers lies a swollen left ankle. In an e-mail exchange with ESPN's Ed Werder, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre told the reporter he will need ankle surgery if he wants to play football next season.

Favre turns 41 in October and will have to decide whether he's up for a 20th NFL season. He led the Vikings to a 12-4 record, and NFC North Division title and the NFC championship game, where Minnesota lost in overtime to eventual Super Bowl champion News Orleans.

Favre's surgeon, Dr. James Andrews, told the quarterback surgery is unavoidable if he wants to play.

"We have spoken," Favre said in an e-mail to Werder. "To play again, I would need the surgery, as I suspected. This decision would be easy if not for my teammates and the fans and the entire Vikings staff. One year truly felt like 10 -- much like Green Bay for many years. That's what I was missing in my heart I suppose, a sense of belonging."

Favre passed for 4,202 yards and 33 touchdowns, with seven interceptions in 2009.