Saturday, December 29, 2012

Vikings-Packers - this week and next?

Back in 2007 when I foolishly started the Grant's Tomb blog, there were a few Vikings sites I visited regularly because I liked what their bloggers had to say. Some of those blogs are no longer active and Defensive Indifference, which was written by Jason Winter, is one of them. Jason has shifted to blogging about gaming at Wintry Mix, but he's been kind enough to write a guest post for KAB now and then. You can read his first two posts here: one about a potentially historic season for Percy Harvin, and another about a potential solution to the Christian Ponder situation.  

If you can't get enough Vikings/Packers, you might be in luck.


The most likely path for Minnesota to the postseason is by winning this week against Green Bay. They can still make it in with a loss, but it would require losses by Dallas, New York, and Chicago, which seems highly unlikely. So, if the Vikings win this weekend, they'll be 10-6 and the Packers 11-5. The Vikings will be the #6 seed, with the Seattle Seahawks finishing no worse than 10-6 (and holding the tiebreaker edge due to a victory over the Vikings) and the San Francisco 49ers finishing no worse than 10-5-1.

The #6 seed plays the #3 seed. The NFC East winner is guaranteed the #4 seed, while Atlanta's locked up the #1 seed. So the #3 seed will be either Green Bay or the NFC West winner: Seattle or San Francisco.

Both NFC West teams play at home – San Fran against Arizona and Seattle against St. Louis. A win by both is highly likely, which would give San Fran the division at 11-4-1 and make them the #2 seed. If Seattle wins and San Fran loses, Seattle wins the West with a record of 11-5, which due to a “win” over Green Bay, in the infamous replacement ref Monday Night game, would give them the edge over the Packers and make them the #2 seed.

The only way Green Bay can secure a first-round bye and the #2 seed – assuming they lose to the Vikings on Sunday – is if both San Francisco and Seattle lose. Given their opponents and their home field advantages, that seems extremely unlikely. About as unlikely as the Vikings making the playoffs by losing this weekend. And no, I'm not taking ties into account. They'd make my head hurt even more.

So, to recap, if the Vikings win this weekend, they'll be the #6 seed and Green Bay will almost certainly be the #3 seed, which means it will be Minnesota at Green Bay for a rematch in the opening round of the playoffs. And before you go all “January playoff game in Lambeau Field, waaaaaah!” consider this: After starting on a 13-0 run, since 2002, the Packers are 1-4 in home playoff games, including this gem after the 2004 season. (Fortunately, there's no audio of Joe Buck's “disgusting act,” leaving the best exchange from that clip at the 2:48 mark. “Taken down at the 22 yard line, it's Ralph Brown!” “Who?” “RALPH BROWN!” “Come on!”)

In fact, since the Vikings are the #6 seed, it's easy to predict their opponents for the next two weeks: Green Bay and Atlanta. This assumes the team makes the postseason in the first place (and wins its first-round game)... but hey, if I'm going to dream, why not dream big?

1 comment:

  1. "In fact, since the Vikings are the #6 seed, it's easy to predict their opponents for the next two weeks: Green Bay and Atlanta. This assumes the team makes the postseason in the first place (and wins its first-round game)... but hey, if I'm going to dream, why not dream big?"

    Now that the Vikings have defeated the Packers and earned their 6 seed - this scenario has begun to come true. And honestly, if Seattle stumbles between now and the NFCCG, Green Bay is MN's biggest hurdle on their road to the Super Bowl.

    I don't think ATL, SF or WAS scare me as a Vikings fan as much as SEA does, but I suppose any of those games are winnable. MN will have to defeat ATL, of course, and the other three are all possibile opponents.

    I've always pictured the Vikings winning the SB with a regular season like 98's 15-1 campaign or 2009's 10-1 start with a HOF QB at the helm, but the truth is that many SB winners looked closer to .500 during the regular season and got, as the media likes to say, "hot at the right time". the Giants in 2007 come to mind, as well as the Packers one season before their own 15-1 year. Perhaps Minnesota could be that team that starts 6-6 and then finishes 4-0 to begin their run in the playoffs. I certainly don't think Ponder is a SB winning kind of guy at this point, but worse QBs have won before.

    They'll have to discourage the crowd and disorient Rodgers to win this weekend's game, and they have a RB and pass rush to do those very things. Some stellar special teams play wouldn't hurt. Given those things, Ponder only needs 180-200 yds, a couple TDs and no turnovers to steal this one. Not outstanding odds, but certainly possible.

    Oh no. I'm doing it again. I'll be crying into my purple beer before long.

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