Sunday, September 24, 2017

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Listing Sam Bradford as a Top-10 Quarterback — my day has just been made.

At long last, someone finally agrees with me that the Minnesota Vikings signal-caller has the tools to become a top-10 quarterback this season.

Bradford landed at No. 6 — between Seattle’s Russell Wilson (5th) and Tennessee’s Marcus Mariota (7th) on Bleacher Report’s Doug Farrar’s Week 1 QB Rankings. That said, Lindsey Young of the official Vikings team website stated that Farrar did specify that his rankings were done based on “past performance, offseason movement, player acquisitions and future projections,” as opposed to a game-by-game performance analysis.

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Standing on the Precipice
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

I felt a familiar sense of dread set in as we began creeping closer and closer opening kickoff. My team will not be playing until Monday night, and yet, anxiety over an impending matchup between the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs still hit me like a ton of bricks.

I had no stake in the game and no horse in the race — why did I care so much about the outcome of a relatively meaningless early-season matchup?

Tom Brady isn’t my quarterback; Kareem Hunt isn’t my running back; and neither the Patriots nor Chiefs are my NFL franchise of choice. But, like so many other fans, I attach myself to storylines, search for a common thread, and create reasons in my mind — hello, Fantasy Football — to cheer on the contest.

This sport has always always had that effect on me. No matter how many games I’ve played, coached, or watched, the butterflies, without fail,  find a way into my stomach. I can’t sit down on a Sunday — or Monday or Thursday — without feeling that familiar, nostalgic excitement.

Maybe it’s going months without football each year, or maybe it’s the culmination of a lifelong love of the game, but whatever the reason, I’m anxious for the Minnesota Vikings to begin the 2017 season. The cold, dark days are behind us, and in a matter of hours, we’ll be watching this iteration of the Vikings as they begin their quest for the Lombardi Trophy.

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Football’s back, and it’s time to party. We bring you this special season preview episode of Bump & Run to call for an end to offseason bickering and lay out my reasons for positivity heading into Week 1.

The Vikings are a good team, and there’s no reason we shouldn’t have happy thoughts about 2017 (aside from decades of Vikings-related heartbreak, but…hey, what do you do?). In the end, we’re all Vikings fans, and the season opener marks the occasion when we must put lay down our #TeamGloves and #TeamSleeves affiliations (and tridents), and operate as one. For that, my friends, is the path to true fan enlightenment.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Why There’s Hope For A Minnesota Vikings Super Bowl Victory

“A team is only as strong as it’s weakest player.”

I’m not a fan of that expression, partially because I know how it feels to be the weakest player and partially because if it were up to me, I’d simply replace the worst player on the team. But I digress.

Why bring it up then? It’s because nowadays, too many people analyze teams that way. A player has a bad game or a rough stretch of games and suddenly he’s garbage, and so is the team if they don’t replace the player immediately.

It’s simply not a fair judgement. There’s more to a team than meets the eye. A team wins and loses together, rolls with the punches, celebrates the good times, and changes individuals for the better.

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Purple FTW! Podcast: Are We Still Mad About 2009? feat. Josh Pelto & Luke Inman (ep. 410)

With the New Orleans Saints rolling into Historic US Bank Stadium Monday Night to open the 2017 season, it’s impossible not to revisit the 2009 NFC Championship Game and the hard feeling many of the Vikings faithful still harbor towards the Saints, the refs, and certain players on that Purple squad. But are those feelings justified? We explore in the first half of the show because I rewatched the entire game for the first time since seeing it live with me own two eyes on January 24, 2010. Plus for some levity, the debut of our new weekly segment The Happy Hour Half-Hour, with Josh Pelto (@JoshThePelto) and Luke Inman (@Luke_Spinman) having a few beverages and discussing some of the latest Vikings headlines. Sports Over Beers, if you will.

All that and more “Blame Childress” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

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