Tuesday, October 17, 2017

packers

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What we learned from the Vikings' 23-10 win over the Packers.

Packers
Image courtesy of Vikings.com
The Packers are a different team now.

It’s difficult to quantify exactly how important the loss of Aaron Rodgers is to the Packers, but I’ll attempt: it’s possibly the most impactful player injury that could happen in today’s NFL. Rodgers is indisputably one of the top two quarterbacks in football, and we’ve seen the coaching wizard in New England put together an 11-5 season without his golden boy under center, so something tells me this loss matters more than a theoretical injury to Tom Brady. Regardless, the gap between Rodgers/Brady and the rest of the NFL is significant and, somehow, seems to be growing. Aaron Rodgers is one of the best at the most important position in sports, and he may be done for the season.

So the Packers are different now. There will be coach speak and jock talk about “next man up,” but it’s hogwash. The loss of Rodgers is crippling to a team that is decidedly average across the rest of its roster and too often has relied on its magic-maker at quarterback to cover up other deficiencies. That approach is off the table now, and regardless of who’s under center in Green Bay, the Packers will be exposed for what they are. 

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We’re back in the garage studio to rejoice in defeating the demons of Soldier Field and clear up the Vikings’ quarterback situation. Amid the injury uncertainty of Bradford and Bridgewater, and unlikely long-term starting candidate has emerged, and I explain why Case Keenum might actually have been the guy all along.

Plus, I take it a step further, searching for historical precedent and settling on a quarterback comparison that indicates Keenum is probably going to end up in the Hall of Fame.

We also take a quick look back at the shining moment of Trae Waynes’ career and play Pitbull and Blues Brothers clips.

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Packers
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

This is the third installment of our Opposing View series, in which we gauge the league-wide perception of the Vikings by talking to bloggers from around the NFL. For each post, I’ll seek out a writer for a team on the 2017 Vikings schedule, and ask them a few short questions about the way they view our squad from afar. 

This installment is a fun one, as I chatted with Zachary Jacobson of Cheesehead TVThe Vikings play Green Bay in Weeks Six and Sixteen. 

Check out the previous posts here:

Q&A With Steelers Writer Alex Kozora
Q&A With Bears Writer Jeff Hughes

VTTop of your head, give me the first things you think of with the Minnesota Vikings going into 2017.

Zachary Jacobson: When I think of the 2017 Minnesota Vikings, I think of the real challenger to the Packers’ NFC North crown. And, no, I’m not just saying that because I’m talking to a Vikings writer; this is something I’ve been preaching all off-season. The Bears are the Bears and the Lions don’t impress me outside of Matthew Stafford. I think the Vikings will get back to their 2015 form and really give Green Bay a run for their money.

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Allow me to momentarily interrupt the ever-present and ongoing Teddy vs. Sam debate (Mobility! Winner! Accuracy! Smile!) with another edition of Links of the Week. Perhaps the only Vikings-related topic discussed as much as the quarterback dilemma (which, until both are healthy, is not a dilemma at all) the last few weeks is the potential landing place for Adrian Peterson. Peterson is still under contract with the Vikings for one more year, but with an $18 million cap hit, there’s a high likelihood the team will cut bait. The Vikings could of course bring him back at a lower dollar amount, but as our first bullet points out, the Adrian Peterson speculation knows no bounds:

  • In fact, the Star Tribune‘s Michael Rand writes Peterson has been linked to basically every NFL team. This post is a good collection of all the speculation, from intriguing to ridiculous. Some of the more reasonable teams named are the Giants, Buccaneers and…the Packers.
  • Adrian himself weighed in on Twitter Wednesday night, in his usual ham-fisted way of trying to be ominous or something:

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Helping you endure Sunday's games.

The Vikings season may be a distant and bitter memory, but that doesn’t mean we have to turn our backs on the rest of the NFL slate. Let’s not let our purple angst cause us to miss out on one of the greatest weekends on the schedule: championship weekend, where the talent is abundant, the stakes are high, and we as Vikings fans have no rooting interest, and thus no risk of feeling the pain and anger we invite into our lives each week during the regular season. (Except for the game involving that team across the border, of course, which I promise we’ll get to.)

But here’s the problem: for those of us who bleed purple, watching these games that do not feature our beloved squad can be a little confusing. We’re like a puppy that’s lost its way, or a man without a home; who do we root for? What do we get mad about? And what does it all mean?

For this, I give you this guide, created by the Vikings fan, for the Vikings fan. In it, I’ll counsel you through this weekend’s matchups, helping you decide who to root for and generally telling you how to feel about what will take place on your television Sunday afternoon. Let’s get to it!

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