Vikings Compared to Infamous 2016 Super Bowl Participant

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports.

Do you remember the Super Bowl seven years ago when the Atlanta Falcons melted down with the infamous 28-3 lead to Tom Brady’s New England Patriots?

Well, minus the meltdown part — hopefully — the Minnesota Vikings could emulate the 2016 Falcons path, according to CBS Sports.

Vikings Compared to Infamous 2016 Super Bowl Participant

Atlanta put New England in a stranglehold that February night in 2017 and probably should’ve won the chip. No such luck, as the Falcons collapse fell on the ash heap of history and is the subject of memes, even to this day.

infamous 2016
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

CBS Sports’ John Breech examined Super Bowls in recent memory this week and assigned 2023 teams that could mirror Super Bowl winners and participants. For example, Breech claimed the 2023 Los Angeles Chargers have a vibe that mimics the 2013 Denver Broncos.

And when he arrived at Super Bowl LI, the game where the Patriots orchestrated the comeback over the Falcons, he likened Atlanta’s 2016 squad to the 2023 Vikings.

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins speaks before a joint practice with the Tennessee Titans in Eagan, Minn., Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023. © Andrew Nelles / The Tennessean / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Breech mentioned about the 2016 Falcons, “For the first eight seasons of his career, Matt Ryan showed flashes of being one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL. In 2016, he finally put all together in a season where he led the Falcons to the Super Bowl while winning MVP. We won’t talk about what happened in the Super Bowl, we’ll just let Falcons fans enjoy the fact that Atlanta got there.”

So, here, Kirk Cousins could evidently echo the dazzling performance of Ryan from 2016 and drag Minnesota to its first Super Bowl appearance in 47 years.

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

Then came the Vikings parallel. Breech explained, “Kirk Cousins has shown flashes of being great through his first 11 seasons, and it wouldn’t be surprising if he finally puts it all together this year and produces an MVP season that ends with Minnesota in the Super Bowl.”

The Vikings have +4,000 odds to win the Super Bowl — the same odds attached to the 2023 Denver Broncos and New Orleans Saints.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

No notable NFL expert has picked the Vikings to reach or win Super Bowl LVIII or anywhere close to it. The nearest nugget of positivity arrived this week when ESPN’s simulation machine, created by Seth Walder, chose Minnesota to snatch the NFC’s No. 1 seed.

Aside from that, most pundits believe the Vikings will fire up an 8-9 or 9-8 record.

The Vikings begin the regular season this Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and if Breech’s fringe theory is applicable, set a path to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1976.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by