Archive for July, 2009

Fantasy Football Crystal Ball: Bernard Berrian

Minnesota Vikings wideout Bernard Berrian is no stranger to the big play. Last season, his yards-per-catch average of 20.1 was second in the NFL. But that was last year with Gus Frerotte, who, despite his faults, has always had a good arm. This season, he’ll be catching the ball from either a quarterback named after a plant, or a quarterback who is less consistent than Jamie Lee Curtis when she forgets to eat her Activia yogurt.

For Berrian and his potential fantasy football owners, whoever wins the quarterback job could have a rather large impact on Berrian’s value. During the 2008 regular season, Tarvaris Jackson was under center for six contests. In those games, Berrian caught just 13 passes for 207 yards (15.9 average) and two touchdowns. With Frerotte at the controls, Berrian caught 35 passes for 757 yards (21.6 average) and five touchdowns. You see the dilemma.

Rosenfels, on the other hand, has been successful throwing deep, though to be fair, he did have Andre Johnson at his disposal. Nonetheless, he was still 15th in the AFC with eight “big plays” (passes of 25+ yards) last season, despite playing in just six games. On the other hand, Jackson was 20th in the NFC with just five pass plays of 25+ yards. This was the same amount of big plays as St. Louis’ Trent Green, despite the fact Green played in only three games, and it was four fewer than Detroit’s Daunte Culpepper.

What this potentially says about Berrian is his value is as-yet undetermined. If your draft comes towards the end of training camp, try and get a pulse on if Rosenfels or Jackson has the upper hand. If it seems like Jackson will get the call during Week One, it may be wise to downgrade Berrian just a few spots on the wide receiver list. However, if it looks like Rosenfels will be the man, Berrian should stay right where he is.




Michael Vick to the Vikings Would Create an Intriguing Situation for Minnesota

Nobody really has any idea at this point where Michael Vick is going to end up this season.

Some people have said the Pittsburgh Steelers or even the New England Patriots are the top contenders for him.

Others don’t even think he’ll play in the NFL and that he’ll go tear up the UFL for six to seven weeks as sort of a tryout.

There are also a number of questions surrounding his return, most notably his ability to play after almost two years away from the sport. His off-field issues are also something teams pursuing Vick need to be concerned about, not just dogfighting, but also his marijuana problem.

But put all of that aside for a moment and think about something for a second.

Vick would make a rather interesting combination with the Minnesota Vikings—especially now, since they didn’t get Brett Favre to re-unretire (I guess that word makes sense when talking about Favre).

Just think about the Vikings offense with Vick: Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin, and Michael Vick—three very electrifying players, all on the same offense.

Tarvaris Jackson isn’t going to make Minnesota into a playoff contender any time soon, and neither is Sage Rosenfels. Favre could’ve, but we will never know.

Just imagine how powerful of an offense Minnesota could have with Vick as its quarterback.

Harvin has already played in an offense that used the option and utilized him in both the rushing and passing game, which obviously would translate well to a team with a wildcat formation, which Minnesota could have since they drafted Harvin.

Peterson has already established himself as the most dominant rusher in the NFL today after only two seasons in the league. He averages over 100 yards a game for his career. He’s just a beast—enough said.

Now take Vick, possibly the best scrambling quarterback in NFL history, a former 1,000-yard rusher, and another player that would fit great in a wildcat formation. Put him into the same offense as both Harvin and Peterson, and you have yourself one of the most prolific offenses in the NFL.

With all three of those guys on the field at the same time, and a wildcat or wildcat-like formation put into the offense, the Vikings could become a serious contender.

Defenses would have to game plan around all three of those guys, and you wouldn’t know who was going to get the ball or what they were going to do with it. It would cause so much confusion for the opposition and would strike fear into some of the best defenses around the league.

I know what Vick did was unforgivable, but he has served his time and should be allowed to get back to his career.

The Vikes don’t have a good QB, and they need one to go along with that solid defense and running game if they want to contend. Vick seems like he could be a good fit there.

I’m not saying he necessarily should become a Viking, but simply that it would make a very intriguing situation in Minnesota and could possibly, if it all went well, turn them into a serious contender in the NFC.


Brett Favre Tells the Minnesota Vikings No Thanks, but Is He Really Retired

Future Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre told the Vikings that he will not return at this time…But will he really stay retired

The never-ending saga of quarterback Brett Favre’s retirement/unretirement that has exacerbated sports headlines—and quite frankly my nerves—since mid May just “might” have taken it’s final turn on July 28th. 

The 39-year old surefire Hall of Fame passer announced via Minnesota Vikings head coach Brad Childress that his body was too broken and battered to attempt a comeback with the Vikings this season.

Favre’s announcement ended the second straight summer where the NFL community had to endure his ego-driven unretirement talk while waiting “patiently” for the 18-year veteran to finally make-up his mind one way or the other. 

Favre had fueled speculation that his return to the Vikings was pretty much a done deal after having undergone surgery to repair the torn biceps tendon earlier in the summer and working out with high school kids at Oak Grove High School in Hattiesburg, Mississippi on a consistent basis.  But in the end, I guess the graybeard passer came to the realization that his body and heart were not into playing a 19th NFL season this time for the Vikings. 

Later Favre, himself, told ESPN’s Ed Werder:

It was the hardest decision I’ve ever made. I didn’t feel like physically I could play at the level that was acceptable. I would like to thank everyone, including the Packers, Jets and Vikings, but most importantly, the fans. I had to be careful not to commit for the wrong reasons…They were telling me, ‘you went through all this, you had the surgery, you’ve got to finish it off.’ But I have legitimate reasons for my decision. I’m 39—will turn 40 on Oct. 10—with a lot of sacks to my name.

Favre’s decision left the Vikings, who spent the last three months doing everything to “court” the former 3-time MVP to join them, to pick-up the pieces of their 2008 NFC North Championship team that was looking to make the jump into being a serious Super Bowl contender this season. 

Vikings players were to report to training camp in Mankato, Minnesota on Wednesday with the long shadow of Favre definitely not too far behind. Childress, who is on one of the hotter seats in the NFL after going 24-24, lamented about not getting Favre through a written statement: 

It was a rare and unique opportunity to consider adding not only a future Hall of Fame quarterback but one that is very familiar with our system and division. That does not detract from the team that we have. As we have consistently communicated, we feel good about our team, and they have put forth a tremendous effort this offseason preparing for the season ahead. With this behind us, we look forward to getting to Mankato and getting training camp under way.

I cannot even imagine the scene of the Vikings coming together at training camp and trying to rally behind their two “also-ran” quarterbacks—Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels—after several players, including Pro Bowl players RB Adrian Peterson and DE Jared Allen, lobbied hard for Favre to join them.

In doing some well-deserved damage control, Peterson tried to quell the Favre talk by saying on the Vikings’ team Web site:

It doesn’t make sense to worry about things that are out of my control, I am confident in every player we have on our roster, and I believe our front office has done everything in its power to keep improving our team. Now, as players, it’s our job to go out there and defend our division championship, get back to the playoffs and make a run at the Super Bowl.

Maybe Favre not coming will propel the Vikings and whichever quarterback that wins the starter job to new heights. 

However I don’t care how many statements have been issued through the team’s PR department or how many team-building measures are taken, the Vikings are already a distracted team, in my book, before their season has even started. 

So now it will be up to players like Peterson, Allen, and DE Ray Edwards to rally their Vikings teammates so they can possibly step around the mess left by the group of Favre, Childress, and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevels. 

My advice for the Vikings to move forward is as follows: Let Jackson and Rosenfels battle it out—expect Jackson to the starter in Week 1 at Cleveland; run the ball over 30 times a game with Peterson and Chester Taylor; find inventive ways to get the ball in explosive rookie Percy Harvin’s hands; and let your D-line (Allen, Edwards, and the Williams Wall) continue to harass the quarterback leading to turnovers by your DB’s.

So do we have enough closure to finally list Favre’s career NFL stats in ink. I am not going to say this thing is totally over until I see Favre standing at the podium in Canton with his gold jacket on. 

Already I have been there are reports that Favre is still throwing and he apparently confirmed this with his former position coach and confidant Steve Mariucci.  Favre even said to Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, “I really believe this is it. I truly, truly believe it’s over. But if someone calls Nov. 1, who knows?” 

So the door is closed for now, but Favre maybe lurking somewhere with a crowbar in his hands to jimmy the door back open to jump back right into the NFL scene. I really want to see what happens if (when) there is a big quarterback injury during the league’s first six games.

If Favre’s decision is his final one, then hallelujah lets move-on to the litany of other topical stories heading into the 2009 NFL season. I will state that have been a Favre follower since his early days with the Packers when he made it seems something out of nothing every game. 

But I also have to admit his whole unretirement act has stretched my Favre bro-mance to its limits, as right now I believe he has severely tarnished his legacy. However as Favre “walks” away, though his flip-flopping may have taken something away for many, he will forever be remember for playing the game of football with childlike joy. 

Though some will try to paint Favre as an egotistical bully after two summers worth of retirement/unretirement talk, not even his end of the career waffling will not truly dull Favre’s legacy for good. 

As time passes I believe most No. 4 fans will remember him fondly as the player that dominated the ‘90s at the quarterback position. The three-time NFL MVP endeared himself to NFL fans by giddily waltzing through the storm of eighteen NFL seasons producing win after win including an indelible victory in Super Bowl XXXII, where of course he won the MVP of the game. 

Then there are the numerous records that are securely in his treasure chest including most career NFL touchdown passes (464), most career NFL passing yards (65,127), most career pass completions (5,720), most career passing attempts (9,280), most career NFL interceptions thrown (310), his “iron man” most consecutive starts quarterback streak (269 and you can make it 291 if you include the playoffs), and most career victories as a starting quarterback (169). 

Favre had a quality that made everyone for him even if he was on the opposing team’s sideline. 

His passion for the game stems from a pure love of “street” football that we all remember from our youth.

So close your eyes and remember the moments that Favre produced—the Super Bowl win over the Patriots where he and Reggie White brought the title back to “Title Town”, the magical December 2003 night in Oakland where playing through tears he won one for his Dad throwing four touchdowns in a 41-7 rout as every pass seemed to find a receiver, snowball fighting on the field in his 2007 playoff win over the Seahawks, leading the youthful Jets to an improbable 34-13 victory of the previously undefeated Titans at Tennessee in Week 12 of 2008 season while completing an NFL weekly high of 70.6% of his passes, taking on Warren Sapp after sacks, blocking on end-around plays downfield, and numerous other stories—because one day your grandchildren are going to ask you, “Was Brett Favre really that good?”

All I know is…Favre better not change his mind before this article is published!

Good Luck Brett riding off into the sunset on your tractor and please stick with staying on your farm.

Now I can happily direct my keyboard to a bunch of other NFL related topics that have nothing to do with an aging legend changing his mind as the wind blows. 


Lloyd Vance is a Sr. NFL Writer for Taking It to the House and an award winning member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA)

Posted in Brad Childress, Brett Favre, Favre to stay retired, Favre’s Unretirement, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings Tagged: Brad Childress, Brett Favre, Favre to stay retired, Favre’s Unretirement, Football, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, NFL, Sports


Vikes Quarterbacks Likely Won’t Pay Off, Hoping Brad Childress Kept His Receipt

First and foremost, regardless of any “No chance” quotes coming from Brad Childress, let’s all agree that this whole “Favre thing” isn’t quite dead yet.

There have been tiny birds chirping from tall trees about a possible Favre signing mid-way through August, rather than mid-season.

But biting on hearsay, a coach’s words that you can never trust, or even the word of the great one (Favre) is nothing short of letting yourself get knee deep in a wild goose chase.

No, instead, let’s drop the drama off at the pool, let it sit a while, and get back to what we know.

What is absolutely for certain in Minnesota, is that Childress and co. have one hell of a running back, a solid offensive line, an active special teams unit, and an aggressive defense.

But, again, we knew that.

That’s why they were dipping their fingers in the Brett Favre dip all off-season. Not necessarily because it tasted so good that they had to keep on dipping, but because the alternative, was, well, not so tasty.

But here the Vikings are, ready to go in training camp today, with Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels duking it out. Oh, and let’s not forget that not-so-coveted former USC quarterback, John David Booty.

He might just get to keep that number four jersey, after all.

But since we’re back to square one, are we honestly going to allow ourselves to believe that this is going to be a fair fight?

Let’s face it, people, Rosenfels was brought in for a reason.

No, he’s not overly athletic (or athletic at all), and probably isn’t the long-term answer (make that a definitely), but he’s a proven pocket passer with a good arm and has shown he can put up solid numbers.

Jackson, on the other hand, finally showed spurts of decent play late last season, but then made everyone forget about his blissful play against the Detroit Lions, as he stunk it up in a playoff loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

There are two doors Brad Childress can choose to open, and quite sadly, neither will lead to that possible Super Bowl run that Brett Favre was tempting the entire state of Minnesota with.

With Rosenfels, you have a guy who will make some plays and can manage games, but can also go all “helicopter” on you, and blow games at the last second.

Jackson, on the other hand, offers to versatility, athleticism, and potential.

But 2009 isn’t about potential. Or helicopters.

It’s about getting someone behind center who is competent enough to manage games, and good enough to win a few when called upon.

Call me crazy, but Childress had his guy last year, and he went by the name of Gus Frerotte.

But like Jackson before him, Childress gave up on Frerotte, went back to Jackson, and well, the rest is history.

So what does the crystal ball have in store for the Jackson vs. Rosenfels match-up?

It could very well be a tight race, and either winner could easily emerge as a serviceable quarterback that simply does what he needs to to help the Vikings win games, i.e., a Trent Dilfer.

That, or Childress could suck up his pride and turn to door number three.

Yes, friends, there is always a door number three.

He could take back his “no chance” remarks, give ol’ Brett another call in eight weeks (or less), and ride that 40-year old arm as far as it gets him.

After all, at this point, what does he really have to lose?


Danged If You Do: Managing Personnel in The NFL

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.

It’s July, and there’s some question as to whether or not quarterback Brett Favre will be returning to play football this season.

Familiar, right?

Of course, Favre’s decision this summer was whether or not to join the Minnesota Vikings, not the Green Bay Packers.  The most recent news on the Favre front is that he’s still retired.  No condominiums in Minneapolis.  No family booking hotels in Green Bay during Vikings week.

With that news, Brad Childress and the Vikings are getting slammed by the press and the blogs for not being more strict with Favre.

Jim Souhan, a columnist from the Twin Cities’ Star Tribune wrote that Childress “should have imposed a strict deadline on Favre” so that he could come out looking like a “clear-eyed decision-maker” who “wasn’t willing to sell his soul” for a Hall of Fame quarterback.

But wait a minute.  What happened when management in Green Bay made the kind of decisive move last summer that Souhan said the Vikings should have made this summer?

If you can’t remember, I’ll refresh your memory.

Green Bay’s general manager, Ted Thompson, quickly became one of the most reviled people in not only Wisconsin, but wherever else Packer fans gather.  

Thompson knew his choice: give Favre what he wanted and alienate the heir-apparent at quarterback, or be firm and tell Favre, who had already retired, that he missed the boat.

Thompson went with the latter and the fans hated him for it.

Childress went with the former, and if the Vikings have any quarterback trouble this season (which is likely), the fans will hate him for it.

This all goes to show that none of us are as smart as we think we are when it comes to what our favorite teams should do.  

We as fans have no idea what the general managers of professional sports teams have to weigh when they make their decisions.  And, most importantly, most of us have no clue what it’s like to be hated by tens of thousands of people no matter what we decide to do concerning any one player.

So the next time you don’t like something your favorite team’s general manager did for the team, keep in mind that they’re just doing the same thing you do every day at your job; the best they can.

And you thought this was going to be another Brett Favre article, didn’t you?


Kenechi Udeze: Saying Goodbye Is Never Easy.

The Minnesota Vikings have announced the retirement of defensive end Kenechi Udeze, ending his bid for a comeback this year with the club.

In February of 2008, Udeze was diagnosed with leukemia. And despite receiving a bone marrow transplant and being able, initially, to participate in OTAs, Udeze’s decision was mainly due to side effects associated with the treatment which hindered his progress.

The first-round draft pick by the Vikings was enjoying what was building up to be a rather impressive campaign with the club. Udeze recorded 117 tackles and 11 sacks in 47 starts as a Viking.

His current bout with leukemia, which is in remission, was not the first time in his career he has faced adversity—nor was it ever a reason to quit.

Udeze battled weight problems before entering USC’s program coming out of high schoola challenge he overcame.

In 2003, Udeze returned to action for the Trojans after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his knee only to be a part of the 2004 Rose Bowl team.

Udeze will never be known as a quitterthat much is for certain.

While playing for USC in 2001, the redshirt freshman garnered 35 tackles (nine for loss) and four sacks in only 10 games started. Udeze earned a spot on The Sporting News Freshman All-American Second Team and The Sporting News All-Pac 10 First Team, as well as USC’s Co-Lifter Award.

Udeze enjoyed a very successful 2002 campaign as well.

He was named Defensive Lineman of the Year, was an All-Pac 10 Second Team selection, and shared the Pac-10 lead with six forced fumbles, which was a USC record.

In total, Udeze boasted 135 tackles (51 for a loss) and 28 sacksa school record as wellin addition to 14 forced fumbles as a Trojan.

As with any severe illness, people and players often find themselves having to make difficult decisions that are often never truly understood by others.

In Udeze’s case, his penchant for never quitting anything only amplifies the obvious disheartening nature this had to yield.

In football, the opportunity to come out of retirement is always a reality, and there is never a true way of knowing what the future holds for Udeze going forwarda notion that holds a bit of optimism in the football realm for himself, for his fans, and the Minnesota Vikings.

The most positive aspect of all of this is that Udeze feels healthy, his leukemia is in remission, and the road to recovery, albeit daunting, is ready for the taking.

And you can surely bet Udeze, and the spirit that has become synonymous with him and his endeavors, will be ready for the challenge with his best foot forward at all times.

Here’s to a speedy recovery and a positive outcome to an otherwise unfortunate turn of events for Udeze and his family.


Farewell Kenechi Udeze, You Will Always Be In Our Hearts

Here’s an article that I dedicate to the 26-year-old Kenechi Udeze. Kenechi fought to make his journy back to the NFL, but the battle against leukemia kept it short.

He’s a tough man that deserves everyone’s love and prayers.

I’ll start off with his career:

Udeze attended the University of Southern California, and was a three-year starter and helped his team to a 2004 Rose Bowl victory as a junior. He finished his college career with 135 tackles; 51 of them for a loss, 28 sacks; which was a school record, 14 forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, one interception, five pass deflections, and two blocked kicks.

Then came the NFL 2004 Draft where Udeze was drafted by the Vikings out of USC in the first round with the 20th overall selection.

During his rookie season with the Vikings, he started 15 games and recorded 36 tackles, five sacks, one forced fumble, and one pass deflected.

In 2005 Udeze was injured in the Vikings third game of the season with cartilage damage in his left knee, which kept him out the rest of the year. Udeze finished the season with three games started, five tackles, and one sack.

In 2006 he was once again the starter at left defensive end, playing 16 games, starting 15 and recorded 29 tackles and no sacks.

In 2007, again he played in all 16 games, with 15 starts, and had 47 tackles and five sacks.

On February 11, 2008, it was announced that Udeze was diagnosed by doctors with a form of lukemia. Udeze revealed that his leukemia was in a state of remission. Udeze would get a bone marrow transplant from his brother. He said at the time that he plans to play football again someday, but says health is his No. 1 priority for now.

Udeze returned to the Metrodome as an honorary captain for a game against the Green Bay Packers on November 9, 2008, again stating he would return. 

Then yesterday, Kenechi announced his retirement to a short and difficult career.

That was all the time young Kenechi Udeze had to his short career. It was sad to hear the news that he would have to retire.

Kenechi didn’t deserve this and hopefully won’t have a difficult life because of this. If there’s any way that he could receive help, it would be from us.

Always keep him in mind and in prayers. He needs all the help from everyone and I wish the best of luck to him.

I will always keep Kenechi in my heart and in my prayers everyday. I hope everyone will to.

Good luck and God bless you Kenechi. Enjoy life and always remember that your fans are here for you.


The Minnesota Vikings Shouldn’t Burn the Brett Favre Bridge Yet

Driving, e-mails to your boss, and quarterback decisions: It’s best to steer clear of all three when angry.

Right now, the Minnesota Vikings have plenty of reasons to be angry.

They’ve been jilted at the altar by The Indecider himself. They’ve got too little quarterback talent on the depth chart and too many purple No. 4 jerseys on backorder. They just spent an entire summer making locker room-wrecking overtures, only to become the crash test dummies for the newest phrase in Brett Favre’s vocabulary: “No more.”

And the fans? If you stick your head out the window in Minneapolis, that sound you’ll hear reverberating through the streets is the cacaphony of slammed doors that the Vikings faithful had propped wide open in welcome.

In a few fleeting ticks of the clock, the local barometer on Favre has swung from blissful to bitter.

Star Tribune blogger Seth Stohs declared, “The second that training camp starts on Friday should be the exact moment that Vikings leadership should delete Favre’s number from their phones.”

Columnist Jim Souhan opined, “Favre should be ashamed of himself for toying with an entire organization.”

And while Favre hinted at the possibility that he’ll consider a midseason return (“If someone calls Nov. 1, who knows?”), Brad Childress proclaimed, “There’s not a chance from my standpoint. I’m going forward with the guys that we have.”

Pump the brakes for a minute, Chilly.

You’re still steamed about the Favre situation, no doubt. After waiting on him all summer, you want to sound firm and decisive to remind everyone who’s in control. And you need to throw a some support behind the guys whose jobs have been hanging in limbo for months.

But before you say anything you can’t take back about what will and won’t happen, step back and take stock of the situation.

You’re about to hold a quarterback competition between a journeyman backup and a project who has bounced between the starting role and the bench three times in the past two seasons.

You’ve got a stacked defense and a talented offense with a great big doughnut hole under center.

You didn’t get any closer to a solution this week. “The guys you have” didn’t get any better.

The difference between the 10-6 squad that got bounced from the opening round of the playoffs at home in January and the one taking the field in training camp this week is Sage Rosenfels, a handful of rookies, and a new special teams coordinator.

So like I said, let’s not rule anything out just yet.

Believe me, I’m as irked about Favre as the next red-blooded Minnesotan. I saw him as a clear upgrade at the position. I thought he gave the Vikings the best chance to win.

When his arm isn’t falling off, he’s still a better passer than Jackson or Rosenfels.

When he’s healthy and under control—as he was for the first two-thirds of last season—he’s still a quality quarterback in a league in which quality quarterbacks are awfully hard to find.

Here’s the thing: If that’s true today, it’ll probably be true on Nov. 1, too.

Of course, if the Vikes storm out of the gate 6-1, with T-Jack or Rosenfels looking sharp all the way, this will be a moot point. Nothing would put Favre in the past faster than a fast start.

But what if Minnesota stumbles early? What if they get hammered at home by Green Bay in Week Four? What if the quarterback situation starts messy and gets messier?

What if they’re 4-3 as October winds down? What if they’re 3-4?

At that point, it might be handy to have Favre waiting in the wings.

There are issues of pride, loyalty, and control at play here. There are hurt feelings and bruised egos. None of those things are especially helpful in making sound football decisions.

Brett Favre was a sound football decision on Tuesday. Unless Jackson and Rosenfels make leaps and bounds, he’ll be a sound football decision in two or three months.

If the Vikings need him at that point, Brad Childress needs to pick up the phone.

Unless he deleted the number, that is.


Follow Vikings posts and updates on Twitter: MarinoEccher.


Brett Favre Saga: Time To Move on Minnesota Vikings

There is no doubt when Brett Favre announced that he would stay retired instead of signing with the Minnesota Vikings, his former teams’ biggest archrival, Minnesota Viking fans’ hearts were crushed.

I, too, will admit that Favre’s decision on Tuesday, as displeasing as it was, not only shocked me but also made the dreams I had of No. 4 donning a purple jersey and leading the Vikes all but disappear.

In the end, Favre chose what he felt was best for him, even if it did take almost the entire summer to make that decision—not to mention the amount of time the Vikings wasted trying to win Favre’s heart.

The Vikings wanted to snag the future Hall of Famer so bad, they soon had their All-Stars trying to, allegedly, “coax” him into a Vikings jersey.

Meanwhile, newly acquired Sage Rosenfels is in the corner screaming “Great, this crap again—stuck as the backup! Whoopty flippin’ doo!”

Tarvaris Jackson, as positive as he tries to be, is trying to remain calm, even though, inside his head, he’s thinking: “I swear if they sign him, I’m gonna demand a trade! I will! I’ll do it!” I’m a good QB!”

Of course you are, Jackson! And head coach Brad Childress is really Batman, the Dark Knight, and the caped crusader of Gotham!

The Vikings have had a problem at the quarterback position. And, rightfully so, they decided to take a shot at snagging a future Hall of Famer. There’s nothing wrong with that.

What is wrong, though, is that the Vikings’ head coach Brad Childress allowed Favre to set his own schedule. In a more easier way of understanding it, he walked all over the Vikings!

Looking back at this mess, Childress should have had the nerve to order a deadline and an answer several weeks ago in contrast to letting 39-year-old Favre wait just two days before training camp opens to reject the Vikings’ offer.

So, where do we sit now, a day after Favre rejected the Minnesota Vikings offer to play a 19th season?

We are now at the stage of moving on. The Vikings need to move on and get past this circus story.

For the Vikings, it’s damage-control time. The Vikings’ quarterbacks have been pushed aside for a 39-year-old that never even joined. Does this show a lack of trust in Jackson and Rosenfels?

Absolutely not. They just had a golden opportunity that they tried to go after and failed miserably.

To the other point, there really is no reason to go to both your quarterbacks and apologise. This is the NFL, a business where, if you want to succeed, you sometimes have to risk big to win big. They are professional athletes, they will get over it.

They will be happy to return to the way things were before the “Favre-a-Palooza,” as Vikings’ tight end Visanthe Shiancoe liked to call it, arose. Simply, they will be happy to be pitted against each other in a fair quarterback competition that will take place at the Vikings’ training camp.

The Minnesota Vikings need to focus on training camp, which opens on Friday in Mankato, and the players that actually are on the roster! They will also have to be content with their quarterbacks in the meantime.

And, no, there will be no talk of Micheal Vick possibly joining the Vikings’ squad. Please don’t give media guys, like us, the opportunity to write senseless crap on what impact Vick would have on the Vikings’ offense or why he could make a good fit.

It’s not going to happen. Brad Childress has said it many times already; they are “more than content” with the QBs on their roster.

As a Vikings fan, I will be very intrigued to see Rosenfels compete for the starting job with Jackson at training camp these next two weeks.

Once it’s all said and done, Minnesota will have its starter.

As for T-Jack, unless he uses this competition and the negative criticism throughout his three-year career to motivate him, I see Rosenfels emerging as the Minnesota Vikings’ go-to guy at QB.

No matter who is the starter, they are surrounded by talent. Adrian Peterson is the NFL’s best running back and can take the pressure off the QB.

And speaking of loads, the addition of behemoth second-round draft pick Phil Loadholt at right tackle could provide a solid player and give the Vikings the oppertunity to run both left and right.

Loadholt will, however, have to learn the system quick and adapt to the NFL’s quicker pace if he is to succeed at right tackle. Also, learning to block stout NFL nose tackles will be crucial.

Loadholt will be another addtion to an already top-notch NFL offensive line considered one of the best in the league. Players like Steve Hutchinson, Bryant McKinnie, and Anthony Herrera give reason to believe that claim.

The Vikings can have a stellar pass attack with recievers like Bernard Berrian and Bobby Wade. The Vikings will be able to throw down the field with deep threat Berrian and in the middle with Wade and tight end Shiancoe, who is emerging into a decent reciever in the Vikings’ offense.

Another piece the Vikings have added to their explosive offense is the dynamic playmaker Percy Harvin out of Florida University. With his speed, agility, elusiveness, don’t be surprised to see Harvin line up as a WR or with AP in the backfield.

The only thing Harvin will have to overcome is his off-the-field character issues. If he does this, he can develop into an instant star on the Vikings’ roster.

So, as the Favre Saga washes itself away, the Vikings should be optimistic about their team. They have talent all over that roster, and there is no reason they can’t succeed. They have a NFC North title to defend and should be able to make a stand even in a tough NFC North Division.

As for Favre, who knows what’s in store for him. He mentioned something about “Call me in November.” Something tells me that we haven’t heard the last from him. Just hope it’s not with the Vikings.


Brett Favre Cheated The Minnesota Vikings

Well, Brett Favre has finally retired. For now.

With the whirlwind he created, I beg the question if he robbed the Minnesota Vikings.

It truly seems Brett Favre was to the Minnesota Vikings as Hurricane Katrina was to New Orleans in 2005.

Favre has left the Vikings in shambles.

Actually, he didn’t ever “land” with Minnesota; he stormed through the organization like a raging tornado and left it as quick as Usain Bolt to deal with the problems.

Toying with the Vikings for the entirety of the postseason is one thing. But to turn your back on them, and announce that he is staying retired is a whole other level. Not to mention he did it just two days before Vikings open up Training Camp is another.

Talk about waiting until the last minute.

There is no question while Favre was waffling with this decision, the Vikings were preparing for that possibility, including re-working their extensive playbook.

Now Favre has left the Vikings out in the cold.

This game of cat and mouse between the Vikings and future Hall-of-Famer Brett Favre was devastating for the Vikings.

News broke out last week that Minnesota’s top players, including Adrian Peterson, were texting Favre and insisting he should come out of retirement and play for the purple and gold.

This is bad news for Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels, huh? It’s probably as bad as it can get.

There is certainly a lot of negativity to center in on in this mess. But let’s take a gander at the positives.

At least the Vikings will be able to zero in on the real quarterback competition for the entire Training Camp. At the least, this four-month debacle of a situation is finally at its conclusion.

At the least, there is no more doubt in anyone’s mind that Favre could possibly play with the Vikings.

Or did he leave the door open when he said he could be ready to play by Nov. 1? Did anyone realize this is coincidentally a Vikings-Packers game at historic Lambeau Field?

It’s an interesting fixture, but something that I would rather see closed.

Earlier this summer, I stated my excitment about the possible return of Favre. And, although I am truly disappointed in his decision, I am more excited just to know we can move on.

An incredible amount of a team’s success is based off chemistry, more than the average person believes. And for the Vikings, the reigning NFC North Champions and Super Bowl hopefuls, that can’t be any more true.

With the Favre mess behind us for now, Minnesota can look ahead with their talent-filled roster, defending their division championship, and possibly—I say this optimistically—fighting for the Super Bowl.

And the answer to the earlier question: Yes, Brett Favre robbed the Vikings this offseason.


Brian Wagner is a Staff Writer at Most Valuable Network

This article was originally published on The Purple Trojan