Minnesota Vikings: Are moral victories really a thing?
By Adam Carlson
The Minnesota Vikings were beat on Thursday Night Football by the Arizona Cardinals, but could the game be considered a moral victory despite the loss?
It always stinks to lose games. It hurts even more when the Minnesota Vikings are fighting for a playoff spot and can feel the chance to win the NFC North slip away. And while that isn’t good at all, fans shouldn’t feel too bad about the Thursday Night Football loss to the Arizona Cardinals.
Arizona is one of the NFL’s elite teams. They currently have an 11-2 record and are the highest scoring squad in the NFL. Minnesota is depleted by injuries with their top 3 defensive players shelved for the game and several rookies were forced into starting gigs.Coming into the game, the experts gave the Vikings no chance to win this game.
Personally, I predicted a massacre as well. I know it’s not popular to say that my favorite team would lose handily, but I just didn’t see a way that the Minnesota Vikings could hang with the Arizona Cardinals. The Vikings offense was struggling too badly and with all the injuries, I wasn’t sure how they could slow down the high-powered Arizona offense.
Man, did they prove me wrong.
Dec 10, 2015; Glendale, AZ, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Mike Wallace (11) celebrates after scoring a 7 yard touchdown during the second half against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Not only did the Minnesota Vikings hang in there with Arizona, but they pushed them to the limits. In fact, it all came down to the final seconds of the game. It’s amazing how much this team fought back in a short week and overcame the crushing defeat by Seattle just four days prior. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater threw for a career-high in passing yards and actually kept pace with MVP candidate Carson Palmer while Mike Zimmer had a patchwork defense working to contain the Cardinals.
Sadly, this moral victory will still be a check in the loss column for the young Minnesota Vikings squad, but I think the fans and experts around the league learned a lot about the heart and toughness of this team in the process.
Could this be the “click” for the Minnesota offense that we’ve been hoping to see? When the defense gets healthy, will they be even more dominant now that we know there are some serviceable players as backups? We’ll learn even more about the Vikings when they take on the Chicago Bears on Sunday, December 20, 2015 from TCF Bank Stadium.