The New Bird Vs Magic? Brett Favre Compares Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady to NBA Legends

Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers and Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots shake hands following the game at Lambeau Field on November 30, 2014 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers defeated the Patriots 26-21. Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Like the overwhelming majority of football fans, Brett Favre is eagerly awaiting the showdown between Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers this weekend.

Two of the greatest quarterbacks to have ever played the game will go head-to-head in Foxborough on Sunday night, when the New England Patriots host the Green Bay Packers.

Favre, whose name would feature along those of Rodgers and Brady in the conversation to determine the greatest signal caller of all times, compared the showdown between the two quarterbacks to one of the great rivalries in NBA history.

"Those type of matchups are really kind of what we look forward to as fans," he was quoted as saying by ESPN.

"And this is an epic matchup. Now, is it more than those two playing against each other? Absolutely, and as a coach you're stressing that. But it is fun to watch. From a fan's standpoint this is what you look forward to seeing—[Larry] Bird and Magic [Johnson], or a great hitter against a great pitcher."

Remarkably, while Brady made his NFL debut in 2000 and Rodgers is in the middle of his 14th season in the league, the duo have only crossed paths in 2014, when the latter inspired the Packers to a 26-21 at Lambeau Field.

Brady and Rodgers have largely been kept separated because of the once-every-four-years AFC-NFC divisional rotation but could and probably should have met at least on three other occasions. In 2006, Rodgers briefly appeared in the game at Lambeau Field in relief of Favre, only to break his foot and miss the remainder of the season.

Four years later, the Packers quarterback missed the trip to New England because of a concussion he suffered in the previous week against the Detroit Lions. In 2015, a mouthwatering meeting in Super Bowl XLIX appeared to be on the cards until the Packers squandered a 16-point lead and lost in overtime to the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship Game.

The relative rarity of the matchup only adds to expectations and Favre suggested both Rodgers and Brady were still at their peak, despite the fact the former will be 35 next month and the latter turned 41 before the beginning of the season.

"This is one of those games that the ratings will be sky high, and rightfully so," Favre, who spent 15 seasons with the Packers, explained.

"Both quarterbacks are as good as any that has ever played the game, and totally different in styles. I don't know who I'd give the nod to or the advantage to. Both teams, I'm sure, and both fan bases love their chances."

Aside from the fascinating showdown between Rodgers and Brady, Sunday's meeting carries plenty of other layers of intrigue with it.

The Patriots are runway leaders in the AFC East on the back of a five-game winning run but have flown relatively under radar by their own standards, largely because the Chiefs and the Rams have dominated the headlines.

The Packers, meanwhile, are 3-3-1 and in third place in a closely-contested NFC North, behind the 4-3 Bears and the 4-3-1 Vikings.