Yes, after two or three showers and a seemingly endless series of Disney movies, I feel that I've finally cleansed myself of the fact that I wasted three hours of my life last night hoping that a team completely devoid of talent, coaching, heart, guts, or pride could give us a hand by knocking off the Chicago Bears.
Trust me. . .it will never happen again. And I trust that all of you will join me in that.
So, after last night's game, I was a bit on the dejected side. Not entirely pleased with the way things had gone, obviously, because this now suddenly feels like an all too familiar situation for those of us that have followed the Vikings for any length of time. Then I turned on ESPN. . .yes, I know, I should have known better. . .and got to listen to Trent Dilfer, in all his infinite wisdom, declare the Vikings to be "done." In doing so, he cited the Vikings' "recent history."
Well, in looking at "recent history," maybe Mr. Dilfer should have taken a glimpse at our "recent history" against the New York Football Giants.
The Vikings have played the Giants in two of the past three seasons, once in 2005 and once in 2007. Both of those games were played at the Meadowlands rather than in the comfy confines of the Metrodome. The Vikings won both of those games. . .the 2005 game was a bit of a fluke, as the Vikings won 24-21 by returning a kickoff (Koren Robinson), a punt (Mewelde Moore), and an interception (Darren Sharper) for touchdowns. In 2007, the 4-6 Vikings. . .who didn't have Bernard Berrian or Jared Allen on the team, and had Adrian Peterson on the sidelines nursing his knee injury. . .rolled into the Meadowlands to take on the 7-3 Giants. . .
-With Michael Strahan (who definitely won't play Sunday)
-With Osi Umenyiora (who definitely won't play Sunday)
-With a healthy Justin Tuck (who likely won't play Sunday)
-With a healthy Fred Robbins (who likely won't play Sunday)
-With Plaxico Burress (who definitely won't play Sunday)
-With Jeremy Shockey (who will play Sunday. . .but not for the Giants)
-With a heck of a lot more to play for than they have right now
And the Vikings throttled them to the tune of 41-17. Tarvaris Jackson hit Sidney Rice with a 60-yard touchdown bomb on the second play of the game, and Minnesota never looked back.
Giants' quarterback Eli Manning has had two games in his career where he's thrown four interceptions in a game. Anyone care to take a stab at which team both of those games came against? Well, if you're a Viking fan, you already know that both of those games for Eli came against the Beloved Purple in the two games mentioned above. In his two career games against Minnesota. . .and, again, keep in mind that these were both Giants home games. . .Manning has completed 44 passes in 97 attempts (a 45.3% completion rate), thrown for 564 yards, and has thrown 2 TD passes against 8 interceptions, giving him an overall QB rating of a robust 36.6. And it's not as if the Vikings' pass defense or their pass rush was particularly good in either of those years. . .Eli was just sort of flinging the ball towards anything in a white jersey. I'm not sure what Leslie Frazier did in last year's game to unsettle Manning the way that he did, but I think he can come up with something to rattle him again this time around, too.
I'm not sure who Tom Coughlin is going to be resting on Sunday afternoon. . .I'm pretty sure that Tuck, Robbins, WR Domenik Hixon, and RB Brandon Jacobs won't be seeing much (if any) time for the Giants. . .but as for the rest of the Giants, you know what?
Bring them on. Bring them ALL on.
We shouldn't be wanting our playoff hopes to hinge on who the Giants are or aren't going to be playing, or if airport security in Houston will find and remove the horseshoes that are currently jammed in the rear ends of every member of the Chicago Bears. No, if this team wants to make the playoffs, then they should go out there knowing that they have everything to play for against a team that has nothing to play for, and they should win the damn football game.
And, as crazy as it sounds, and as much as we Viking fans aren't used to this sort of thing. . .I think that's what they're going to do.