First off I will set the scene: 3 years down the road, the 2016 season:
The previously 3 seasons has fared pretty well: 2013 season: 11-5, 2014 season: 10-6, 2015: 12-4. Vikings making the playoffs in both 2013 and 2015, but just missing out of a wildcard spot in 2014. In 2013 they go one-and-done, but end up in the NFC championsship game in 2015, but end up losing to the would be superbowl champions: Washington Redkins. For the stats guys out there: Peterson has rushed for; 2013: 1895, 2014: 2078, 2015: 1975.
Then enter the 2016 season: Expectations are high and a deep playoff run is expected. But to everybody surprise Minnesota Vikings stumble out of the gate and prior to their bye week in week 7 they are 1-5 with their lone victory goming against Detroit lions, the optimism is low and fans are calling for Fraizer's head. Even though their record says 1-5 each of their losses was within 4 points. Spielman still stand by Fraizer and vikings start to deliver. In week 8 just after the bye week Vikings are facing the 6-0 saints* who are riding Drew Brees hot hand. So far in the season Drew hasn't had a game with less than 300 yards, and not a passer rating below 105.
Vikings put the heat on Drew all game long, but he still manage to put some points on the board. However Peterson won't allow the Saints* to win. Vikigns win a close game 30-27.
From this point on vikings catch fire and win 7 or the next 8 games. Everything falls into place and vikings still have a chance to sneak into the playoffs.
In the seaons finally vikings are going against the Green Bay Packers and as in 2012 Packers have a chance at a higher seed (#1) if they win. And just as in 2012 Peterson has a chance of rushing into history, as he has 1870 yards, 235 yards shy of Dickerson. 236 is a tall order, but not impossible for Adrian Peterson. As usual Packers offense is high scoring and flying but Peterson takes matters in his own hands and singlehandedly destroys the packers with 275 yards rushing. In comparison Ponder just throws for 185, but manages to score 4 Touchdowns, 3 passing and a QB sneak. Adrian just manages a single score but vikings end up winning in overtime on a 55 yards field goal by Blair Walsh. final score 38-35.
Vikings face of against Atlanta Falcons, many not even expecting it to be a contested game since Falcons just got their QB Matt Ryan back after a 4 game injury and their only losses comming in that span. A 12-4 team who had the chance at going undeafeted pryor to Matt's ankle injury. For once it's the defense dominating the game and the score at half time is 6-8 to vikings with 2 field goals each and a safety by Harrison Smith. Falcons receive the ball in the 2nd half and runs up tempo no huddle that caught the Defense a bit off gaurd and quickly scores. The score now being 14-8 after a succesfull 2 point conversion. Peterson didn't get going at all in the first half had troulbe from the beginning of the 2nd with an early fumble, luckily recovered by Rhett Ellison. The defenses once again take over the game and with just 3 minutes left in the game vikigns are once again in control of the ball at their own 13 yard line. After a couple of runs for no gain and a loss of 2 vikings are facing 3-12 at the 11. Vikigns get creative on offense and throws a shuffle screenpass in the backfield to Cordarrelle Patterson who picks up 27 yards with a couple of razzle dazzle moves. 2 minutes warning, vikings with the ball at 38. Ponder is effectiv moving the ball down the field and with 15 ticks left on the clock vikings are at the atlanta 2 with no timeouts left and lining up with 3 wideouts (Patterson, Jennings and Childs), 1 te (Rudolph) and Adrian Peterson in the backfield. Kyle is lined up wide right and childs in the slots. Vikings fool everybody and run the ball with AD and he just manages to leap over the pile into the endzone. vikings win 15-14.
Divisional Playoff round:
Vikings against Green Bay Packers. Packers are eager to get revenge, but this game is nothing near close. Peterson and Ponder hit the ground running and doesn't look bad since gaining a 14-0 lead just 7 minutes into the game. Ponder ends with 27-32, 329 yards and 3 TDs, while Peterson goes off for 172, and 2 TDs. Josh Robinson has a pick six to seal the game and the final score: 17-42.
NFC Championsship game.
Minnesota Vikings versus the New Orleaons Saints*. since being beaten by the Vikings, the Saints* hadn't lost a single game and went 15-1 to be the #1 seed. Vikings receive the opening kickoff and Patterson is looking to break one, getting through the first wave of defenders, but the kicker non the less not only takes Patterson down, but forces a fumble at the vikings 45, recovered by Saints*. They go marcihng in and Drew Brees hit Jimmy graham for a 32 yard TD down the middle. Vikings next possesion Peterson is running extremely hard and breaking a couple of tackles. after a couple of first down vikings are nearing the endzone and Peterson receives the ball at the 5 but once again vikings couff it up. 2 Turnovers in the first quater and terrible memories of the 2009 Championsship game starts.
Drew Brees once again marches down the field with ease and is at the vikings 6 before being destroyed by Everson Griffen, who not only forces the fumble but returns the ball the entire way down the the 3 yard line. Peterson finally get going scores a quick 3 yard TD to end the first quater. The 2nd and 3rd quater goes by without any scoring. Score going into the 4th quarter is just 7-7.
Even in the 4th quater it's manly a game of possessions and neither team is able to move the ball effectivly. Vikigns receive the ball late in the 4th quater, and a long run of 25 by peterson but the vikings at 35 line just as the 2 minute approches. After the 2 minute warning vikigns go playaction deep pass to Jarius Wright, but it's interceptied deep in the Saints* terriotory at the 20th. (Yes for those counting it's a 45 yards pass from the line of scrimmage). Drew begins on his effectiv 2 minute run to end the game. He moves the offense slowly but steady and with 3 seconds left on the clock @ the 25 a 43 field goal would end the game. The field goal is wide left, Tom Benson thought it was good though! Game is going into overtime and with the Minnesota Vikings luck, Saints* win the coin toss. The overtime kickoff is 8 yards deep in the endzone, but they still take run it out, with great luck. A single broken takcle and 75 yards later Blair Walsh finally manages to catch the returner and push him out of bounds. Saints* start in extremely nice field possition. they run the exact same play as their first touchdown and with the balls in the hands of Jimmy graham the game looks over but lucky Harrison Smith lays the wood on him and knocks the ball lose. Incompletely Pass! A run and another incomplete pass later Saints* are facing a 4-3 at the vikings 26 they are forced to either try a field goal or go for it. Even though they missed last one they line up once gain. Right footed kick is up and it is GOOD. But lucky this game isn't done yet with the "new" overtime rules. After a touchback vikings are at their own 20 and after a Adrian Peterson run just short of the first down and a incomplete pass vikings are facing 3 and inches. They chose to play it safe, but a run for no gain leave the vikings at 4th and inches. Next play vikings go playaction bootleg and Ponder expected daylight in front of him, but with a defender right infront of him he is forced to throw the ball and chose to toss it into double covarage to Kyle Rudolph. Somehow, with 2 defenders all overhim he manage to come down with the ball and 1st down at the 35. Next play. 27 yard run of Arian Peterson and things are look good. Saints* fear Peterson more than anybody else and play with a stacked box. Ponder audibles at the line and throw a quick slant to Patterson who runs through an arm tackle and is tackle just inside the 5. Things are now looking really great and the rush peterson up the gut 2 times for 4½ yard. The Vikings try to fool the Saints* with some playaction on 3rd down, but they are all over it and Ponder's pass is deflected and luckily for vikings just fall incomplete. 4th down and vikings chose to go for it! What are they thinking? A field goal would make it sudden death, but Vikings believe in their chances with less than a half yard to go. This will be the discusion for the rest of the offseason. If they make it Frazier is smartest coach, if they don't he's a fool. Vikings do as they should have done on third down: They are trusting Peterson as he pounces the ball into the endzone and just manage to get pass the line.
VIKINGS ARE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL - LI (51)!
In the AFC the Pittsburgh Steelers are once again back on the crown and have enjoyed a dominating season, both in the regulare and postseason. One game gave them trouble though, Colts were a tough task but they managed to win and thus the 2016 season finally is going to be Pittsburgh Steelers vs Minnesota Vikings.
While Ponder has have some very nice games in 2016 everyone is still worried about his consistency and ability to beat Dick LeBeau's blitzing defense. While Ponder have been steady and improving throughout the entire season he is still struggling against the blitz and early pressure. Vikigns gameplan have to involed #28 heavenly. Vikings win the coin toss and chosses to receive the football. Patterson is still his explosive self and manages to gain 45 yards return. Vikings first play was a run by Adrian Peterson and he manage to break a couple of tackle and gain 9 yards. Next play vikings go hurry-up playaction, deep to Patterson who secures the catch and is pushed out of bounds just shy of the 5 yard line, a 44 yard pass play. Vikings go ultra conservative on the next couple of plays and somehow Peterson manages to be just short of the goal line on a 3rd and goal run and vikings settle for the 3 point lead early in the game.
Steelers dominate the vikings defense and doesn't face a 3rd down situation until their at the 2 yard line and are looking for their 8 minute drive to end with a touchdown and an early lead. Steelers line up in a heavy formation 23 (2 RB, 3 Tight ends), the entire setup looks like a run, and while it is a run it completely fools the Vikings defense with everybody besides Roethlisberger collapsing inside then he keeps the ball on a naked bootleg and go untouched into the endzone for an early lead 7-3 first quarter more than halfway over. After these first 2 possessions neither team is close to scoring before halftime, untill vikings last possessions with 1:25 on the clock. After moving the ball 34 yards after a touchback punt vikings end on a 4 and 3 and choose the try to kick it prior to halftime. Blair Walsh nails the 64 yarder right down the middle. score is 6-7 Steelers.
Steelers receives the ball in the 2nd half, but the ultra conservative Fraizer pulls a rabbit out of the hat and start second half with a succesfull onside kick. Vikings with the ball in very decent possession. Vikings line up like nothing seen nearly all season, 4 wideouts 1 RB, with Patterson, Greg Childs, J. Wright and Joe Webb alongside Peterson on the field. But vikings still do what they do best and handoff to Peterson, who goes the distance. Vikings with the lead 15-7. Steelers ,a little bit shocked, are well prepared for the ensuing kickoff and Walsh kicks it 8 yard deep for a touchback. Vikings looking to continue the steam of momentum and play tight covarage and defense. Pittsburgh have to fight for every yards, and while they still manage to move the ball a bit Sharif "T-Rex" Floyd put an end to that with a beautiful forced fumble and recovery at midfield. Vikings move the ball effectively with a great mixture of quick passes and runs right up the middle with Peterson. The play of the drive comes on a 2nd-5 from the 20 yard line. A typical end around with Patterson catches Steelers off gaurd and he completely fools the one cornerback who had a slight chance at touching him.
Vikings up 22-7 4th quarter comming up. Steelers next drive goes much better and their move the ball effortless and scores after just 4½ minute with a 25 yard touchdown pass to Brown. Vikings are looking not only to move the ball on their next drive but also trying to run most of the clock. While they manage to keep the drive going for a while their conservative run-run-run doesn't secure them any points, but takes up some time and Steelers have 6:37 left to score. however the go 3-and-out and vikings have a chance to put this one to rest. Vikings gain a first down and with another first down could nearly end the game. "Supringsly" vikings run it 3 times in a row, to have them just short of a first down and we'll see another punt just after the 2 minute warning.
Steelers with the ball 1 timeouts and at their own 13 yard line. Roethlisberger is his former self and moves the ball down the field quickly and with just 5 seconds left on the clock the have the ball at the 5 yard line. Roethlisberger does as he always does and after running around in the pocket and pumpfaking atleast 10 times he finally throws a dart to their only rookie on the field. the score is 20-22, and a 2-point conversion will decide weather the game would go to overtime or not. Steelers lineup 5 wideout, and motion in Brown from the outside. The ball is snapped, Roethlisberger fakes the endaround and keeps it himself up the middle where it seems he would go untouched into the endzone. However somehow, Sharif "T-Rex" Floyd manages to grab him with his short arms (perhaps he had some help like this)
And drags him down just shy of the goal line. Nobody can believe it:
VIKINGS ARE SUPERBOWL CHAMPIONS!