Well, hey, at least this week we don't have to worry about getting an apology from the league office for the referees screwing up on the final play of the game, am I right? Am I right, ladies and gentlemen?
No, the only apologies this week should be coming from a Vikings' defense that should probably donate their paychecks to the charity of their choice. (I would have just said to not bother collecting their checks but, you know, season of giving and such.) The pass rush didn't get so much as a sniff of Drew Brees all afternoon, as he threw five touchdown passes to four different receivers and put up the first 400-yard passing performance against the Vikings' defense since. . .Matt Leinart? Yes, Matt Leinart in a 31-26 Vikings' victory over the Arizona Cardinals at the Metrodome on November 26, 2006.
The Vikings set the record that we've talked about this week today, as they had their ninth consecutive game without an interception, breaking the tie that they were in with the 1996 Atlanta Falcons and the 2009 St. Louis Rams going into this week's game. With the 40 passes Brees threw today, they have now gone 269 pass attempts since the last time they intercepted a pass.
In what could be record time, it would appear as though we've already gotten our "Project 2012" answer on Cedric Griffin, who was not inactive this afternoon, but also did not see the field. He was benched at the start of the game for Benny Sapp and Asher Allen, and even after Allen went off with "concussion-like symptoms" early in the game, Griffin remained on the sideline. Sapp and Marcus Sherels manned the corner spots and rookie Brandon Burton played in the nickel role. I don't know what sort of disagreement Griffin got into with coach Leslie Frazier or defensive coordinator Fred Pagac after the second series of the game against Detroit last week, but he hasn't seen the field since. It's going to be a huge upset if he's back in purple and gold next year, given today's events.
Christian Ponder was a mess today as well, and what's happening appears to be exactly what I feared when he was thrown to the lions after Donovan McNabb flopped. (Christian? Lions? Eh? Ah, what do you know from funny, anyway?) But it appears that he's completely shell shocked, and I don't want him turning into David Carr v2.0. Granted, with Charlie Johnson looking more and more like he's training to be a bullfighter than a starting left tackle and nobody else on the offensive line seeming all that interested in keeping the future of the franchise from getting killed, I'm not sure what else he can do.
But Ponder is, still, the future of the franchise at the quarterback position. All you folks out there that are still under the impression that the Minnesota Vikings would spend a top three pick on a quarterback in the 2012 Draft need to a) get your heads out of the sand, and b) take a look at all the other damn holes this team has to fill. The quarterback position isn't among this team's three biggest needs right now, and it's not even close. The three biggest needs the Minnesota Vikings have right now are (in whatever order you prefer) wide receiver, offensive line, and defensive back, and any high choice not spent on one of those three positions would be a complete waste of a pick.
Adrian Peterson was back today, too, picking up 60 yards on ten carries, but with the Vikings getting down the way they did, it was probably best for his workload to be limited, even though he was disappointed by that development after the game. Toby Gerhart was the recipient of both of Ponder's touchdown passes, and wound up being Minnesota's leading receiver on the afternoon. Yep, it was that sort of afternoon for us, ladies and gentlemen.
So, that's where we're at, ladies and gentlemen. If you're still talking about this one. . .and why on earth would you be. . .feel free to do so right here. Thanks to everyone that hung out in the Game Threads this afternoon, particularly those that stuck it out all the way to the end. . .at this point, we need to laugh to keep from crying, and most times the Game Threads allow us to do that.