Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Fran Tarkenton

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Forget about the four Super Bowls. The Vikings have made the playoffs more times than you think.

Everyone knows that this could be the year the Minnesota Vikings become the first NFL team to play a Super Bowl in their home stadium. The chances get better with every win. This year’s squad rolled into the playoffs in style, earning a 13-3 record, NFC North Championship, and a first-round bye.

With a proven head coach, a talented young roster, and perhaps the most envious quarterback situation in the NFL, both the present and the future are looking bright for the Vikings franchise, while the rest of the teams in the division appear to be moving backwards.

The Packers’ playoff streak just ended after eight seasons, resulting in a mass transformation of the front office and coaching staff. The Lions just finished 9-7, fired their head coach, and have to be wondering why they gave their quarterback so much money. And the Bears? They’re simply “Da Bears.” They’re like the new Lions of old, I guess.

With how things have unfolded for the Vikings this season, it got me thinking — how have the Vikings stacked up against other NFL teams in terms of making the playoffs year-in and year-out since their inception? Here’s a quick run through the team’s history and its success in the postseason.

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Vikings versus Giants
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In an effort to be better educated about our opponents, we have been inviting a writer covering our opponent to Vikings Territory on a weekly basis to answer just a few quick question. This Vikings versus Giants matchup on Monday Night Football is no different, and we are pleased to welcome Andrew Furman of Ultimate NYG to talk a little bit of football this weekend.

Our two teams met not that long ago. 49-17 was the final score, in Minnesota’s favor, with Adrian Peterson and Teddy Bridgewater capitalizing on three Eli Manning interceptions. Us Vikings fans know which part of that changed on our side of the equation, but what have been the biggest changes New York has seen since December to prevent a similar outcome?

The Giants defense was awful last year. There was no pass rush. This year, while not great, at least JPP (no longer wearing a cast) and Olivier Vernon (FA signing) get more pressure. Plus the signing of DL Damon Harrison has (together with the return of pectoral-tear injured DL Jonathan Hankins) shored up the run defense to where teams cannot run on them. The team is healthier now than then (new strength & conditioning coach), but injuries in the secondary here in 2016 are exposing the team to some of the same problems.

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Sunday night could not have gone any better for the Minnesota Vikings during their win over the hated Green Bay Packers. The Vikings played their very first regular season game in front of a record crowd of 66,813 screaming Minnesota fans.

But exactly how loud was it Sunday? How did it compare to the Vikings’ old home at the Metrodome? Luckily, a few people who attended Minnesota’s Week 2 victory have taken some time to provide answers to those questions and much more about their experience last weekend.

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Vikings Territory

I can’t tell you with any certainty, one way or another, whether or not I’ve ever written a blog post from my mother’s basement. It is entirely possible.

Either way, this site essentially started exactly like the cliches would have you believe most blogs are created, a hack blogger with little-to-no expertise decides to start pecking away on a keyboard. I am that hack blogger.

With that being said, we have come a long ways here at Vikings Territory and the eve of the New Year seems like the most appropriate moment to take a look back at what was an amazing 2015. This year was absolutely our best in every measurable way, but everyone on our team should also be personally proud of the accomplishments we’ve managed by merely pecking away on our various keyboards.