Win or Go Home … Or Really, Win AND We Still Go Home Anyway, Since it's an Away Game:
I'll tell you this much … Without the Vikings winning this Sunday, whatever slim hope they still of making the playoffs will get put on a sacrificial block and destroyed with one fell swoop. I think there is still some crazy ass way for the team to sneak into the playoffs even if they lose one of their next three games (@Rams, @Texans, Packers), but if we lose two it's curtains, blouses. As ridiculous as this all sounds, this is a serious conversation we're having. The problem is that the win we were all laughing about early in the season where the Seahawks "beat" the Packers is really coming back to chomp our testes right now. Seattle and Washington are the two teams that have an edge on the Vikings, both in any head to head tie breakers, records, and remaining schedule. If you're looking for a team to root against this weekend, make it the Rams (obviously, we're playing them), the Seahawks (they're a real bunch of pricks anyway), Washington (injured RGIII means a loss?!), and of course the Packers because we all hate them anyway.
But, if somehow, all those things shake out this week, where Adrian Peterson runs for 300 yards again, Ponder only has to hand the ball off, we win, and everyone else loses, we're amazingly still in the picture. And despite this team being loaded with more BS than a fertilizer truck, having them playing meaningful games in December is still a lot more fun than being a Lions fan. SO LET'S KILL SOMETHING!!
St. Louis – The Arch to the Choad of America:
I have been to St. Louis once. It was during high school for a church trip (GAAAYYY!!!), and we pretty much just hung out in downtown by the older Busch stadium (Busch the 2nd? I don't remember). We maybe went to an Applebee's that was downtown to party it up because we were idiots who were 16 in a shitty city. And shitty it was, possibly the most shitty. You think of a metropolitan area like Minneapolis and you have the downtown area, which you can walk from one end to the other in like 25 minutes, no problem. But even beyond that, North East, South Minneapolis, University area, I mean, there's a lot of cool spots in the city. St. Louis? Nope. You have about a six block radius downtown that includes a baseball stadium (which no one should care about since it's baseball), an arch that is stupid (hurray, a keystone holds this together!), and a dilapidated football stadium. If you step ONE FOOT outside of this area, you apparently walk into a war zone of poor people and flesh eating mutants who will stop at nothing to find sustenance. Shit is weird, and I would like to never go back. In fact, I feel bad for the team even visiting there.
Don't Forget – Ponder is Still Playing!
Now, before you start getting TOO excited this week, gearing yourself for the playoffs, let's not forget that Christian Ponder (Ponderis Jackson?) is still our quarterback. So? Well, that means we're likely seeing a 45% completion rate and 115 yards passing from our quarterback on the day. Maybe even an interception or two. IN HIS DEFENSE, we might also have one touchdown, but it'll likely be a garbage one. You think about what he did last week against a Bears defense that was held together with zip ties and spit, and you're not left with a ton of confidence this week. A road game? Against a team that is still trying to prove themselves? A team that has a little momentum right now? A team with an unknown at quarterback ready to make our defensive backs look like brain dead buffalo? I'd say our odds of winning in this situation would rank as NOT WELL. The only hope we have is that the Rams forget to game plan for Adrian Peterson and he breaks the rushing record, AGAIN, and the defense scores a touchdown. Because we know Ponder isn't going to get us one.
Dolan Comic of the Week:
You may look at this week's Dolan and think I'm trying to pull a joke on you. Akshully, I am, iz a Dolan joock. But only because stupid Gooby gets tricked into guessing the wrong message on this Wheel of Fortune situation. The obvious joke here is how badly he got punked by Dolan, but also the fact that he was so sure of himself that he bet $10,000 big ones, only to then go in the hole like the economy. Stupid Gooby. Just because you can't SEE Dolan doesn't mean he's not there!
Scotch of the Week:
This week's scotch is a bit of a wish list scotch. We're taking a look at the Tullibarine, which is likely going to be hard to find locally. The reason is the distillery that makes it was actually shut down between 1995 and 2003. The result was some older scotch that sat around like a fat chick waiting to get hot, and then some rushed, younger scotch poon that was sold early on after it was reopened to get money again. Because of this, not many of their scotches are given age dates (which typically isn't a good sign), but the experience with this bottle sounds pleasant enough that I'd like to try it. It's probably more of a summer scotch, as it hits on the sweet and citrusy sugar notes typical of spirits aged in a Madiera cask, and has a similar easy going flavor of lemon slice, cream soda, and grapefruit. Essentially, if you like Bartles and James, you'll love this scotch. The finish is weak (like my left arm) and quick, so it's definitely not a drinking man's scotch, but something you could probably drink in Florida right now, if you weren't trying moonshine. Give it a go if you ever come across it.
Shirtless Viking of the Week:
Since our hopes and dreams of a playoff one-and-done appearance lay on the broad, arousing shoulders of the one and only Purple Jesus, I thought it was apt to bring out the big comes as a token to the Lord in hopes of a win this weekend. I am deciding that this is pretty much the quintessential Shirtless Vikings picture, and I'll probably fight anyone who says differently. It's from a while ago, as the text box says Peterson was 24 here, but if you think that matters you're drunk. Instead, we just get a picture of this divine body from four different angles, even though the angle of the woman's panties are only going in one direction right now … DOWN. Booya! Anyway, hope this is enough to get us the victory. I'm honestly not sure what other picture could help out in a similar fashion, unless it was a shot of him shirtless riding a snowmobile with VIKTOR the VIKING on the back, I guess.
Now or Never Predictions:
OHGODOHGODOHGODWHATDOIDO … We're at that weird record and part of the season where I'm just not sure if I should be rooting for a win or a loss and a draft pick. I mean, OK nerd fans, I get I should ALWAYS be rooting for a win, but we're so far out of the playoffs right now as is, winning what would wind up being a meaningless game would squander a chance at really improving the team through a legit draft pick. But god, what if we win?! What if Peterson goes HAM, the chips fall the right way, and we make it to the playoffs? Do we just need to get there and maybe win a game or two to get to the Super Bowl? … Good lord, I don't think I've ever written a more ridiculous statement on this blog. I need to go receive some electro shock therapy and pass out for a month.
If I look deep into my soul for a prediction this week, I can't see a win. I just can't. And let me go on record saying it has nothing to do with Adrian Peterson and everything to do with Christian Ponder, Bill Musgrave, and AJ Jefferson if he plays. But being on the road in this situation just bodes ill for us, and I think we come out unprepared and lose it. It won't even be really close, like a soft whimper as you fire that slacker at work. Oh well. Let's just get Peterson his 2,000 yard season, and I'll be happy.
But, uh … enjoy the game? Maybe I'll be totally wrong and things will go awesome. I know you'll watch regardless. Check back in Sunday for a game thread to share any of your stresses and disappointments. Largely, disappointments. See you then.