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Fan-Connect Open-Thread: Vikings vs. Texans

The Minnesota Vikings final preseason game, a match-up in Houston's Reliant Stadium against the Texans, is almost here. While this game isn't going to give fans of either team much in the way of a feel for what the teams will look like in the regular season, what with most of the starters sitting this one out, it is going to be a key game for a lot of guys farther down the depth chart who are trying to make the roster. Yep, for all those folks who are on the bubble and are hoping not to be given their walking papers less than 24 hours after the game, this game is a very big deal.

For everybody else, not so much.

Somehow this song sort of fits the game right before final roster cuts.

More after the jump.

This same week of the preseason a year ago, the Vikings and Texans faced off at Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. That was the only game, preseason or regular season, in 2011 when the Vikings managed to completely shut out an opponent, winning 28 to 0 on September 1, 2011. And it didn't count.

I was at that game and it was the kind of fun team performance that filled me with false hope for the 2011 season. Say what you will about preseason not counting, but it is hard not to get excited when you see your team completely shut-out an opponent. Christian Ponder scrambled like he was a line cook at a greasy spoon, rushing for 61 yards on 8 carries, and went 10 for 16 in passing with a touchdown throw to Kyle Rudolph. The rest of the offensive highlights that game came from guys who aren't with the team anymore, like back-up running back Caleb King (62 yards on 19 carries and two touchdowns), Greg Camarillo (2 receptions for 24 yards), Jaymar Johnson (2 receptions for 28 yards).

After that authoritative win over Houston in the final preseason game last year, the Vikings went on to a 3-13 season, tying for a franchise worst, while the Texans went on to a 10-6 season where they clinched the AFC South and won the franchise's first playoff berth.

But enough about last season. As the fourth-largest city in the U.S.A., according to the 2010 census, one would hope there's a Vikings-friendly tailgate happening somewhere in the fine city of Houston, Texas on Thursday. If you're in Texas during August, one would hope that you'd at least get to go to a good barbecue and a football game.

As with the previous preseason games in 2012, tickets are still available for this game. So, if you're going to be in Houston, you can still cheer the Purple on at the game. If you're watching the game in Minnesota, turn your television to NBC affiliate KARE-11 at 6pm on Thursday. A replay of the Vikings/Texans game will be available on Fox Sports North on Friday, August 31, 2012 at 10:30pm or on the NFL Network at 10am Eastern on Sunday, September 2. You can listen to the game via the Vikings Radio Network, check their listings for stations throughout the upper mid-west (it will broadcast on KFAN 100.3 FM in the Twin Cities). You can refer to the Vikings' Media Vault for additional viewing information.

And, because this is the final preseason game and most of the starters won't be playing, let's chat about...hmmm...let's chat about your "fan cave." I know this is traditionally referred to as a "man cave" but as a female football fan, I know that sometimes the hardcore fans in the family aren't the guys. So, tell us about how decked out your "fan cave" is, heck, even post pictures so the rest of us will be jealous.

There's your fan-connect open-thread for the final Vikings preseason game. Feel free to chat about the game or about what you're going to be eating during the game or about your "fan cave" or anything you'd like.