Bryan Miller’s Fever Dream – Part Deux

​According to string theory, quantum fluctuations in the energy levels of Calabi-Yau spaces yield pockets of existence with individually distinct quantum laws—that is, a multiverse.

And within these millions upon millions of variants on our own universe, somewhere, inside one of them, the Vikings just began their unlikely 2021 playoff campaign. After toppling the Seahawks last week, they now move on to face the most decorated quarterback in Super Bowl history.

It must be true, or else this is all just a fever dream….

Part Two: The Insurrectionists

​There was supposed to be a peaceful transfer of power.

​Tom Brady made no secret that he planned to play professional football deep into his menopausal years. With a literal handful of Super Bowl rings in New England, surely he’d earned it. The prognosticators all prognosticated that he and Bill Belichick would take a tactful bow together and exist stage left, not wait for time’s tiger to rip them apart like so many Sigfrieds and Roys.

​But Bill balked. Brady left. The Patriots faded faster than one of Belichick’s smiles while Brady went down to Tampa Bay and became the most greatest bit of good luck to grace the south since Jed Clampett struck Texas Tea. Finally Brady could prove once and for all that the power to certify those Super Bowl results had been in his hands all along.

​Tom Brady didn’t count on an insurrection from a plucky group of Minnesota Vikings.

​The Purple People Eaters defeated the 43-year-old avocado-sniffer 14-13 in a close Divisional Round playoff contest. The one-point deficit might not even indicate how close this game really was, even considering the fact that Dan Bailey shanked his lone field goal attempt—not left or right, but rather backwards, curling the ball up over his own head and behind him where it struck NBC’s zipline-mounted camera, forcing the network to stick to wide shots for the remainder of the telecast.

​Kirk Cousins was dynamite on Sunday. Or rather he was tiny little amounts of gunpowder, cautiously but thoughtfully distributed to create a series of unimpressive but ultimately effective smaller explosions. Cousins finished the game 27-31 with 185 yards with a seemingly endless series of effective short passes against the stout Buccaneers defense.

​Dalvin Cook notched just over a 100 yards because of course he did, while Ameer Abdullah and Mike Boone added 38 and 32 yards respectively for a running game that ground down Tampa Bay in a low-scoring game.

​Brady was uncharacteristically listless, missing easy throws and tossing up an easy red zone interception. The only explanation can be his frankly astonishing weight gain over the course of the nine days since congress certified Joe Biden’s election, when the QB famed for his dietary asceticism has been on an all Ben & Jerry’s diet. (His quickly deleted tweet “Now I’ll NEVER get the medal of freedom!” may give some sense of his psychological state, given that it was posted at 2:35 am.) A never-puffier Tom put up a passer rating of just 36.8 and was seen on the sideline drinking some nacho cheese straight from the plastic tray.

​This improbable Vikings team will take it any way they can get it. As unlikely as it all may seem, the fact remains: This Sunday the Vikings will play the Green Bay Packers for a chance to go to the Super Bowl.