The Minnesota Vikings were never a Superbowl betting favorite for the 2011 season, as when the roof of the Metrodome caved in last year it served as a metaphor for the status of their team. Just two years ago Brett Favre was leading the Vikings to glory as they made the NFC Championship game and were heading for a game winning field goal that would send them to the Super Bowl before Favre did what he did best, or make that worst, and threw away the chance with an absurd interception. That was the beginning of the end for the Vikings.
Minnesota has a record of 2-10 this season and is light years behind the competition in the NFL. The Donovan McNabb gamble is over as the Vikings cut loose the veteran quarterback for the same reason the Washington Redskins did last year….he was washed up.
The Vikings rank 23rd in the NFL for scoring offense and 31st for scoring defense and are committed to a rebuilding project the rest of the way under first year coach Leslie Frazier, who took over for the fired Brad Childress last year. While Frazier is certainly not to blame for the Vikings current woes, there are legitimate questions about his ability long term to lead Minnesota back to post season status.
The Vikings are now going with Christian Ponder at quarterback and the rookie out of Florida State has shown gradual improvement in his on the job training has he has a 76.6 QB rating with a 9/8 TD/INT ratio.
The main weapon for the Vikings is at running back in the person of Adrian Peterson, who has rushed for 875 yards and a 4.7 yards per carry average with 11 touchdowns. It’s unfortunate that Peterson’s body will go through the wear and tear of a losing season in which there is no hope and he has missed the last two games due to injury. The Vikings lack a true breakaway receiver and are stuck with a host of possession type players that are not capable of busting the big play.
The long term viability of the Vikings is also in question as ownership wants out of the dinosaur that is the Metrodome for an outdoor stadium. With Los Angeles promising to build a downtown showcase for not one, but two franchises, the days of the Vikings may be numbered in more ways than one.