So, by now everyone has heard about the blockbuster trade that went down between the Washington Redskins and the St. Louis Rams last night. But in case you haven't, here's the breakdown:
-Washington receives the #2 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft
-St. Louis receives the #6 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, the #39 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, and Washington's first-round pick in the 2013 and 2014 NFL Draft
I don't want to say that the deal is a little one-sided, but rumor has it that Mike Lynn called Dan Snyder in the wee hours of this morning to compliment him on what a great deal he made.
Yes, the Minnesota Vikings' victory over the Redskins on Christmas Eve "cost" the Vikings the opportunity to hold the #2 overall pick and get that potential haul from Washington or some other team. While I was bopping around the internet this morning, I found that there are a decent number of folks that are still not entirely happy that the Vikings didn't try harder to lose that game in order to make that happen. If you should happen to be one of those people, I have something I'd like to say to you. . .Stop it. Just. . .freaking. . .stop it. You're embarrassing yourself.
We've been over this a couple of times, but it bears repeating in this case. . .you are not going to get a team full of professional athletes to "tank" in order to gain draft position. Why? Because the guys that are currently on the team don't give a damn whether the Vikings are drafting at #2 or #3 or #10 or #29 or wherever else in the first round of the NFL Draft. Or, at the very least, they shouldn't.
The Minnesota Vikings have 18. . .that's eighteen. . .players that could potentially hit the free agent market when things open up in about 48 hours. Do you suppose those guys give a damn about draft position? No, they don't. . .I'm guessing they're much more interested in being employed when Training Camp starts in late July, and they're not going to get employment from teams watching game film of them and seeing that they quit when things got rough late in the year.
As for the rest of the team. . .do you really want a coaching staff that would ask its players to roll over and quit? Do you really want 2/3 of the roster being full of players that would actually listen to such a stupid request? I'm happy that this team fought their tails off for the entire season, despite the injuries and the other issues. Yes, the Vikings lost 13 games last season. . .nine of those 13 losses were by a touchdown or less, and another one was by 10 points. This was a bad team, but at least they fought and had an opportunity to win the majority of the games they were in.
I can handle cheering for a loser (sometimes, anyway). . .I can't handle cheering for a quitter. This team didn't quit in 2011, and they're going to be better for it in 2012. . .with or without a boatload of extra draft picks.
But really, "tanking" at the end of the season was never a realistic option, and I wish people would stop pretending that it was. To borrow a line from a former NFL head coach, "You play. . .to win. . .the games. Hello!" The Vikings won just enough games to wind up with the #3 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. My guess is that they won't be in such a bad position next year.
If you're still mad, though, go to the NFL Shop and order yourself a jersey with "Kalil #75" on it. You'll feel better.