Get ready for a shit show: I’m going to be honest. Much of this week I haven’t really been getting wrapped up in all the hype of this game. I haven’t listened much to KFAN, I haven’t really watched ESPN, I’ve only haphazardly checked in on news stories, news conferences, guesses as to who Loadholt ate this week, but found little to no controversial jokes and offensive jokes. Not very exciting stuff. But it’s been growing. No, not me, I stopped growing like seven years ago and will forever look prepubescent, but this feeling of there being some epic shit going down soon in this town. You can see it in people’s faces. You notice it as your neighbor takes his garbage out in a Greenway jersey. You read it on the message boards from the highest of highs to the lowest of Britney Spearses. The tension in this town is building and it has been all week. Slowly, but surely, the feeling has transferred from a wide eyed, frozen shit-sicle of fear to a confident, surly bunch of people that will flood the gates of Zygi’s Hood on Sunday and absolutely tear that place down, win or lose. There’s been a lot of talk this week of the Metrodome not being as formidably loud as people tend to think. Sure, there’s some truth to that, but these reporters haven’t recently walked these cities streets either. They haven’t seen the determination and slight desperation that is dripping off these fans like a fat kid with an ice cream cone in August, looking for a blood bath on Sunday. The Cowboys may think they’re ready for what they’ll face, crowd noise and all. But they’re not. Sunday’s game is going to be something that has rarely been seen in this town. If the Vikings win, I fully anticipate another riot scene in Dinky Town. If they lose, I’ll expect the same. Regardless, get your mace and your bats ready. Bring your grenades and rocket launchers. We’re comin’, we’re comin’ … This place is about to explode. Bring on Sunday.
Thanks to a rube named Chumps over at Rube Chat for providing another playoff game preview graphic!
Percy Harvin’s impact: The tide has been turning this week. On Sunday the predominant thought was that the Vikings didn’t stand a chance against the suddenly hot Cowboys. Prognosticators felt that the momentum train the Cowboys were (and still are) riding was on a straight shot to fuck town, and the Vikings were waiting at the final destination, gaping wide. But as my buddy Lee Corso would say, not so fast my friends. Favre all of a sudden is sounding too confident for his ball washers to overlook. Analysts are starting to pick the Vikings as some kind of mysterious underdog winner. But some people are just being smart about it. They’re looking at matchups across the board. And while it’s easy to focus on the big names of Tony Homo, Purple Jesus, Jason Witten and Kevin Williams, Vikings Gab is an examples of someone who has moved down the line a bit and found what I think is a huge notch in the Cowboys championship potential belt, namely, offensive rookie of the year and potentially the most dynamic player on the Vikings roster lining up all game against … let’s check that name here … Orlando Scandrick? That sounds like a Michael Vick alias. Yeah, Orlando Scandrick, one of the worst defenders on the Cowboys. How does this help the Vikings? Well, keep in mind that Percy is probably the sexiest slot receiver the NFL has EVER SEEN this side of Wes Welker (he’s got a square jaw, that’s why) and any matchup he has is going to be a mismatch in his favor. This is especially true when we’re talking about a guy like Scandrick that let Eli Manning fork him in the butt cheeks. Percy is going to be a huge factor this game, both in the passing game against this retread and in the return game to get the Vikings solid field position. This is but one of many examples of the mismatches that are starting to come out in the Vikings favor. And if Percy has a Moss-esque type of postseason? I may have a new, HARDER, man crush then ever. We’ll call him Percy Brovin. Or something.
I swear to God, offensive line: On the other hand, I remain very skeptical about the chances of our offensive line against the formidable Cowboys pass rush. Again, Vikings Gab took a deeper look into these matchups and found that John Sullivan, the overlooked fattened hobbit in the middle of the line, may be a solid role player in this game. That’s all well and good, but we’re all idiots if we don’t join the rest of the pack and acknowledge how concerned everyone is for McKinnie and Loadholt against Ware and Spencer. I can’t find the quote, but I did see somewhere that McKinnie has noted that his poorer played games towards the end of the season can be attributed to him trying to correct his alleged “tell” in his stance that tipped the defense to whether the play was a run or a pass. Paraphrasing, he said he’s done with trying to correct his stance and he’s going back to what he’s done his whole life that has worked for him. In essence, he alluded to being prepared to just manning up, grabbing his testicles, and beating his man and calling it a day. God, I wish you would be able to do that McKinnie, but I just don’t know. This pass rushing matchup is going to be the big thing to watch for the Vikings offense. Yes, Favre is going to get molested worse than Rashida Jones in my dreams, and yes there are going to be some frustrating moments, but dammit, offensive line, this is where you need to step up and KICK ASS. You need to go Ronnie from Jersey Shore on someone and just knock them the fuck out with one punch. End it early. Punish them like it is Sarah Palin in the sack. I don’t care what you do but make us proud, protect that Land Baron, and let Purple Jesus crucify these bastards.
At least they’re playing at noon: There are several benefits to the game being played at noon, at least for me, which of course is all I am concerned about. First, I kind of enjoy waking up, eating brunch, having your Bailey’s and coffee and then jumping straight into the football game. No one wants to do anything early in the day on Sundays anyway (church? What?) so having three hours of football in front of you allows you to be slothful to the fullest extent. Sweet. The Vikings also seem to play much better earlier in the day than later in the day. Obviously, this is so that Favre can play during the most alert part of his day since he’s old and wakes up at like four thirty every day to do farm work or whatever he does. Maybe ride his tractor around with no discernable destination or purpose. Whatever. Also, you can get wasted and, if any of you poor suckers have to work on Monday, can crash and get hung over WELL before you actually have to show up for work. Perfect. The only draw back to this is for the good fans that are actually going to the game. I imagine that the more time you can allow people to sit out in the cold drinking themselves retarded, the louder and more obnoxious the Metrodome would be. Also, the chances of streakers and thrown objects from the upper decks towards the Cowboys bench probably increases as the hours go on. The solution? If you’re going you just have to wake your ass up at three, or just camp out in a parking lot all night long to make sure you are plenty shit faced come game time. If I know my Viking fans, this shouldn’t be a problem.
PJD Mail Dump – Game day plans: We took a bit of a different approach to the Mail Dump this week. Instead of begging, pleading, and offering handskies behind the woodshed for people who wrote in with random questions and observations, I asked readers what their game day plans were, as well as other lucky traditions or expectations they had. There were a few good ones that you can find in some previous comments that we’ll feature here. Starting with Peter, he said:
“I’ll be watching the pregame show and drinking the champagne of beers (why, Miller Highlife, of course!) while my wife puts the boys down for naps.
I’ll be wearing the usual Vikings gear (pants, t-shirt, hoody, socks [the socks rule], hat. I don’t have a jersey because I’m not a homie like that. And I don’t have the money.
I’ll light my Vikings candle as an offering to appease the football gods.
No dopey chatty friends or family are coming over (thank goodness) and anyone who tries to call during the game will go on my 1-year black list.
Homemade nachos, a toilet within 15 feet of my spot on the couch, and a cold closet full of beer. A bottle of Tylenol and a bottle of Pepto – just in case.”
A couple of things here. You don’t have the boys watch the game with you? Too much swearing for their young ears? I would be interested in seeing these Vikings socks. I can’t imagine that you feel very heterosexual when wearing them. I would be interested as well in the homemade nacho recipe. You can’t go wrong with those. And finally, Peter, you touch on a crucial and often times overlooked point, that being the obnoxious phone call from family or friends during game time. Listen, people, if you weren’t invited to watch the game with someone then stop barging in on them. Some people like to watch it in solitude, so let them be. And the most embarrassing part? You’re still calling! The safest route to take in this futuristic year of 2010 would be to simply text message someone. That way they can respond when they feel like it (you know, during commercial breaks) and ignore you otherwise. Get with it!
From Jessica comes:
“Watching the game with some friends in the cities. My significant other, unfortunately, is watching the game with me (he’s the Bears fan, so you can probably see how that can get awkward quickly). I predict by the end of the day, we will no longer be talking.”
I apologize for the difficult times in your relationship, but you could be dating someone that doesn’t like football at all, and that would be a total disaster, so count your blessings. The not talking thing can get awkward. How did it go after the Vikings’ overtime loss? Probably not well, I imagine. Does he at least superficially root for you or does his personal rooting interest interfere with even that relational support? Oh, and tell him he’s a sucker for hopping on that Cutler bandwagon. WAH WAH WAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!
“I will be drinking Miller High Life in my Peterson jersey, watching the game with my old man and standing in the lucky doorway.”
A lot of Miller High Life here. I like the idea of a lucky doorway. My family has something similar called the lucky hallway in the past which has, out of necessity, transferred to a lucky doorway. Also, I have a memory of the Cardinals/Vikings game that knocked the Vikings out of the playoffs where a friend was latched to a doorway in dismay. Something about those doorways …
Finally, from Johnny:
“Lucky clothing- my Greenway jersey. I shit you not 3 of the 4 losses I wasnt wearing it so the Giants game I said fuck it and wore it and look what happened. So I’ll probably wear the son of a bitch to bed Saturday night.”
I swear to God if you don’t wear this on Sunday, Johnny, you’re dead to me. And yes I purposely left out your final comments.
Didn’t get your plans/lucky jersey item in the Mail Dump? Leave what you’ll be doing in the comments. Share with us all, like a hooka! Or whatever. Thanks to those who participated, and keep sending me weird crap!
Random songs that would do good to fire you up: I’ve done this before where I’ve picked random songs for people to listen to over the weekend or before the game, but this time we are selecting these totally random and arbitrary songs that we feel you should listen to so that you’ll be FUCKING JACKED for the Vikings game come Sunday. Have a suggestion yourself? Put it in the comments. The first person that mentions Korn though will get cock punched. Here is a totally incomplete and probably incorrect list, but have at ‘er:
Notorious BIG – “Party and Bullshit”
Metallica – “Master of Puppets”
AC/DC – “Thunder Struck”
Gang Starr – “The Militia”
Iron Maiden – “The Trooper”
Shit is wild. Add yours in the comments.
Obligatory cheerleader mention: In last week’s preview we talked about how the Cowboys cheerleading squad originally started off as a group of high school boys and girls. Kind of creepy. I suggested we go back to the high school girls, but that was a joke (kind of). It did however get me thinking. The Dallas Cowboys cheerleader outfits are rather iconic. The blue and white are noticeable wherever you are, and the short shorts, stars, bedazzled rhinestones, and other cowboy accoutrement are all classic. However. I do think there is a group of cheerleaders in Texas that does a Texas cheerleading outfit even better, and that would be the group from the University of Texas. The chap type things that they wear there are almost too Texas for the Dallas squad not to wear them, but I also understand that they are equally iconic for UT. I don’t think a little mixing and matching could hurt though. In fact, it may even unify the state! Just something to think about on a serious note instead of just sitting here writing about perfectly flat stomachs and beautiful long blond hair. I didn’t even notice, are those features in any of those pictures?
Wild and crazy playoff predictions: Ok. Showtime. I’m obviously a homer about this but I think the Vikings should be favored to win this game. Throw all the analysis, breaking down of the game, she said – she saids out the window and what do we have? A well rested, 12-4 team playing at a home stadium that they haven’t lost in to start off the “new season” of the playoffs feeling slightly disrespected after not being in the public consciousness for the past several weeks after some stumbling down the stretch yet still being led by a Hall of Fame quarterback. Those are some difficult odds to fight. The Cowboys have a nice team. There’s no denying that. But this is the playoffs. We have four teams in the NFC left and in a pretty equal field any team can easily win on any given day. This day, I feel that it favors the Vikings a bit more than the Cowboys. Predicting match ups, stats, game plans, and all that other shit are stupid. I just want the Vikings to win finally. And as Drew Magary pointed out in his Jambaroo this week, the Vikings save their heartbreak for later on in the post season when they have strong regular seasons, so you know damn well we’re looking at a Super Bowl loss or an NFC Championship game loss. Hopefully not, but until then, this weekend we get to watch an ass stomping of America’s team by OUR team and prepare for another home game when Arizona beats the Saints this weekend too. Yeah I said it. We’re hosting the NFC Championship game, because we’ll also be beating the Cowboys 27 – 24. Book it.
Enjoy the game everyone. Try not to hyperventilate this weekend. And check back Sunday before the game for an extra special PJD feature. Got any guesses?? Of course you don’t. But check it out regardless. See you then.