Sunday, October 25, 2009

Coming Off the Ledge: Steelers 27, Vikings 17

As a fan, this week went just as I expected it to. All week long, I just assumed the Vikings were going to lose to the Steelers. I was doing pre-emptive consolation (at 6-1 they're still in great shape, if you're going to lose a game it's the AFC road games you can most afford), looking forward to the game but not optimistic. And yet I knew that whatever assumptions I brought into the game, once it started I'd be fully invested, and if they end up losing, I'll be emotionally deflated. I'll mull too much on how a few particular plays could have changed the outcome (like a terrible--TERRIBLE!--call by the officials that negated what would have been a go-ahead touchdown, or an interception on a screen play that bounced off Chester Taylor's hands when the team was already in range for a game-tying field goal attempt). I'll be encouraged about some things that went well (the defense played much, MUCH better than anticipated: the pass rush was effective and the secondary played as well as they could under the circumstances, really. Since the impression that stuck from the previous week was the defense being destroyed in the fourth quarter against Baltimore, it was good to be reminded that our defense is actually good), but mostly I'll be frustrated and empty-feeling.

Hence a lousy week. No clouds of heaven trailing our steps, but anxious frustration, disappointed sadness, and impatience for the next game.


  1. Anonymous4:01 PM

    Take heart. It was a terrible fluke loss that would have been an emotional hard fought win. But it was a fluke loss--the calls were terrible against the Vikings and I don't think they evened out, as they usually do. The fluke interception at the end. This was the best possible way to lose because they didn't really get beat so much as stupid crap happened against them.

    Of course, as a Favre fan, watching the old man sling it against that defense, hobbling from various uncalled cheap shots, and still losing because of "butterfingers" hurts me a great deal. But it was going to happen.


  2. Anonymous4:08 PM

    Does anyone know if the referee that had the phantom "tripping" call was the same referee to get mowed over by Dugan on Harvin's kickoff return TD? Somewhat poetic if it did happen to be the same one.

  3. Anonymous4:30 PM

    lmao i loved wen the ref got hit.. if one ref makes a very bad call, they all r to blame cuz you dont know which did it. and adrian peterson was great at the end.. i loved his loud yell after the run where he trucked a steeler..

    overall this game shows we still have a great team, just change a few errors (that dont happen often anyway) and we won..


  4. Bismuth5:52 PM

    I almost feel better about this loss than about last week's win. Despite missing their top cornerback, the league leader in yards and comp% was unable to pick apart the Vikings secondary (with the exception of the idiotic soft nickel package just before halftime). In the 4th quarter, it was the Vikings who were in control of the game on both sides of the ball. Despite the worrying number of penalties, the only thing that appeared could stop the Vikes was the sort of fluke turnovers that actually happened. This could easily have been a convincing 24-13 road win against one of the league's best teams in one of the toughest stadiums.

  5. What about not pounding AD 4 times (if necc.) on 1st and goal at the 1? Best RB in the NFL should be able to get 1 yard in 4 tries no? No excuse for throwing the ball from there.

  6. horrible horrible call. at the bar, before the games, i was talking with two browns fans about just how atrocious this year has been for officiating in the league and on the college level. wow. you guys got jobbed. sucks.

  7. Some of you are hitting on how I feel about this loss. Nothing in the game changed my impression of the Vikings as a Super Bowl contender. They played another Super Bowl contender at their place, the game was close, and if just a few plays went slightly differently, the outcome would be different. The Vikes are capable of beating any team they face, but they're not invulnerable. They need to play well all season to secure a first round bye and home playoff games, giving them a better chance against their playoff opponents. I'd say the same thing, basically, if they won the game closely today.

    By the way, today's loss illustrates why a team never has to apologize for any win. Last week they beat the Ravens IN PART because the opposing kicker missed a field goal, something largely out of the Vikings' control. Today they lost to the Steelers IN PART because the officials made an awful, indefensible, unquestionably bad call, something largely out of their control.

  8. Anonymous7:44 PM

    Do you know that in Spanish, Ron Winter means "I am an incompetent jerk, who is obviously blind from excessive masturbation."

    I notice that Mr. Winter did not notice the blatant "tripping" attempt by Steelers LT Max Sparks on Jared Allen, just the series before his "homer" call. He only tried to foot sweep his as he passed him; that must not count as a "trip".

    I hope the next time Mr. Winter is in Minneapolis he visits a qualified eye doctor or strangles on his kippers before he can screw the Vikes, again.

    That lousy call changed the entire complection of the game. The man and his crew are horribly inconsistent and they can only call the obvious, sometimes.
    If you are not sure, don't throw the flag!

  9. Anonymous9:27 PM

    Let's not forget the delay of game on the defense call... Wow.

  10. Peter8:03 AM

    Joe. Nail, head, wham. Well said.

    Are the guys on KFAN radio confidently ignorant, or is there something to the leg-whip comments I keep hearing about? I'm starting to question the 'unquestionably bad' about the tripping call.

  11. Tim Carlson9:33 AM

    I definately wasn't as devasted after this loss as I thought I would be. I think a tough loss to a very good home team could be a nice way to spark a great week of practice before heading to Lambeau.

  12. This is what a six game cushion does for you: so far I've found most Viking fans' reactions to be remarkably sober. Can you imagine if the game went exactly the same but dropped the Vikes to 4-3, or even 5-2? It would be a bowlful of anxiety.

    But the Vikes are 6-1 and still have five more home games--they're in great shape. I'm really back to feeling good about the defense--and we'll need the defense to be good to get to the Super Bowl.

  13. Anonymous11:32 AM

    Refs were terrible. Tripping? Defensive delay of game? AP from the 1 must score. NEVER throw the ball to Kliensasser in any situation.

    Tough loss, but we were the better team.

    7-1 is my hope for teh bye week. Must bounce back at Green Bay.

  14. Lokee114:23 PM

    Regrettably, I am a Lions fan so I should be happy with the loss - they (Lions)are only what 5 games behind instead of 6 now but anyway, all day I've heard all the "Experts" talking about how the Vikings choked and Vikings gave the game away. I do not call it choking when a Phantom call loses the game for you. Yes they should have ran AD - All Day - on the goal line, Yes Chester should've caught the ball, BUT guess what "Experts" like it or not - no tripping call - no Steelers win. Since the Lions suck like usual and the NFL seems to remind me more of the WWE than a respectable sports league. I think I am just going to play Madden on Sundays for the rest of the year - it is more realistic and I can reset if I get cheated. Thanks -

  15. dan worley11:48 AM

    I agree with joe on all fronts. I felt like we played well adn it was nice to see that we have the potential to play the big boys. we don't/won't get all the breaks. Last week baltimore missed a fairly easy field game for a vikings win. calls and lucky plays have a way of evening out. Hopefully next week we get a big W. The Vikings are very fun to watch this year.

  16. Anonymous8:51 PM

    The Vikes had many more legit chances to win the game than the Steelers did. Two defensive T.D.'s just don't happen very often and the Vikes were in the process of scoring on both counts.

    The secondary was much better than I thought they would be without Winfield. There were a few "I know I am supposed to be covering somebody" moments, but all in all, I will take it.

    D line was getting "good" pressure with four men most of the game, which is what we need. We gave up too many yards in obvious blitz situations against the Ravens.

    I felt that as a team our tackling was very good. I feared that we would sorely miss Winfield and his torpedo like abilities. He hits like few players in the league, especially for a man his size. He is all heart.

    We need to out physical the Packers, particularly on the O line. We should be more dominant than we have been with some of these teams. I know that we are a bit nicked up at a few positions, but our guys are simply huge and
    should be winning the one on one battles more often than they do.

    6-1; What a start. Let's keep the flow going.

  17. Anonymous11:05 AM

    Wow...way to blame the refs. Last I checked the Vikings had a chance to win and blew do you blame the officals for that one? How are you going to blame them for Favre fumbling under pressure? It's easy to play the what could've/should've been game. I just hope playing it helps you all sleep better at night.

  18. You people are all idiots. Just keep telling yourself it was a fluke, and keep blaming the refs, because a good team can come back from one bad call, the Steelers did.

    Could I take up a collection of your tears when you lose in January, I'm making punch for the Superbowl, and the tears of Vikings fans taste sooooo sweeeet.

  19. Oh yeah, one more thing...You try catching that ball. There's no way in hell any of you would have been able to catch that. 2 turnovers-both Favre's fault. Purple Jesus got crucified.

  20. I take it you are a Steelers' fans? Here's what you don't understand: we're not discussing the officiating in reference to the quality of the Steelers, but in how it relates to the Vikings. I don't think anybody is suggesting the Steelers didn't earn their victory, or that the win was fluky for the Steelers. Probably, as a Steeler fan, you assume if we're criticizing officiating, we're therefore criticizing the Steelers. But we're not: just as you are narcissistically seeing the conversation in terms of the Steelers, we are narcissistically seeing the conversation in terms of the Vikings. We're still not sure about our team, and several people are expressing some happiness that we were able to play a close game with a good football team, and a close game that came down to a few (relatively fluky) plays. If you think about it, it shows our respect for the Steelers: we think they are a good football team, and are accepting the close loss as perhaps an indicator our team can compete.

    Regarding the interception, I think it is extremely difficult to blame Favre. The pass was a little high and a little hard, but the QB hit the receiver in the hands: not only did he drop it, but it was basically a lucky bounce that put it right into a defender's hands.

    But why am I trying to respond reasonably? These comments don't appear to be an attempt to elicit reasonable discussion.

  21. Anonymous1:04 PM

    Jeff is an idiot! I miss the Fire Childress Now guy when I read dribble like he put in.

  22. And just for the record, two of the commenters criticizing the call are not Viking fans: Cian is a Packer fan, Lokee11 is a Lion fan.

    I'd hope we can honestly assess officiating without being accused of being whining idiots, but then, I'm writing on the internet, so I shouldn't hope for anything.

  23. No I am not a Steelers fan, I've just heard too many excuses and too many conspiracy theories from Vikings fans in my life which has led to a disgust for your fans and your chokin' 0-5 in the superbowl, 15-1 NFC Championship Losing team. Your dissapointment brings me joy. Your misery brings me happiness...Herschel Walker.

    ...and anonynous why wouldn't you want to fire brad childress? He's a moron, but I guess that makes him perfect for the choke artist vikings...put a name up jackass.

  24. And for the record, 9 out of 10 Vikings fans I know are whining idiots.

  25. Oh good: so you just hate the Vikings and want us Viking fans to be miserable. That certainly encourages me to engage in a serious dialogue with you.

    And we're 0-4 in Super Bowls. If you enjoy our misery so much, at least be accurate about it, because we are miserable (though we don't really need to be reminded about it).

  26. Your anecdotal experience with Viking fans is certainly a valid condemnation of all Viking fans. Thank you.

  27. I'm sorry, I guess all of those NFC Championship games the Queens have lost got me confused and my experience with vikings fans is far from anecdotal. You may not believe it but some of my best friends are Vikings fans. That still doesn't mean they know what the hell they aren't retarded.

  28. Correction that still doesn't mean they aren't retarded- like that last sentence i typed. Now I have more important things to do then make fun of Vikings fans on a freaking message board, I can walk out of my office door and do that in person.
    Peace Out!

  29. anecdotal: "Based on casual observations or indications rather than rigorous or scientific analysis"

    Problems with anecdotal evidence:

    But now I'm just being pointless. Peace to you.

  30. Anonymous4:07 PM

    Jeff, I am sure your mommy will get mad when she finds out you were on the computer. Be a man and shut up. I would guess you to be a Bengals fan. Just dumb and not much to say. Go away!
    Great come backs by the way. I hear many of them from my own teenager. May as well say "whatever".

  31. Anonymous4:20 PM

    9 out of 10 are whining idiots? You have better things to do than be on a "freeking messsage board"? You may need to get some help. I agree with anon. It seems you are an idiot yourself.
    I hope you are very busy and have no time for this page. It will be very easy for me to avoid reading any of your comments.
    Walk out the office door and great the co-workers. I am sure they missed you when you were in the office. Their day must have been crap when you were not filling them with your vast knowledge.

  32. I lied, I love Vikings fans, you guys make such easy targets. Now settle down and go pleasure yourself to that picture of purple jesus you have hanging up on your door. Glad I could give you something to talk about. Don't forget to save me those tears.

  33. Oh, one more thing, you guys wouldn't happen to be my cousins or aunts and uncles would you? They have a hard time handling a little trash talk as well...Or maybe I'm just right about the 9 out of 10

    PS. Herschel Walker.

  34. Anonymous5:32 PM

    Thought you had better things to do? Funny you never have the balls to say who you cheer for. Just sit back and be a nobody doing nothing. Oh yeah, I forgot, no time for "message boards". Weak ass punk

  35. I just thought I'd check back for a couple of laughs, and I couldn't resist another post. The attempts at personal attacks are priceless. Nobody asked who I cheered for, but I'm fine with telling you that I am a Bucs fan, and I know this will light up your little message board with an incredible amount of trash talk given their current situation, but I can take it because at least when we made it to the Super Bowl ...we won it. Now I'm going to let you lambaste the Bucs and throw around your Viking fan angst, and maybe I'll check back later to see what you can say that I haven't heard before. But keep in mind the more pissed off you get, the more fun I will have.
    Joe-you might be one of the ten percent...Anonymous up here...definitely in the 90th percentile.

  36. I'm going to avoid a flame war, but this got me thinking about something:

    What IF it is true that Viking fans complain a lot? Could that possibly have something to do with the franchise's history of disappointment? Could it be that after all the disappointments (so many to count: four Super Bowl losses, the Hail Mary game, the Gary Anderson game, the Nate Poole game), after never seeing our favorite team win the Super Bowl, we've been overtaken by a collective neurosis? I mean, really, our team constantly disappoints us: doesn't it make sense that we'd complain, whine, and be generally full of angst about the team? Do you think most of us would be this way if we had seen our team win a Super Bowl? I think that even if the Vikes won a Super Bowl before I was born, I would be 15% less neurotic about life.

    Let's say I just embrace the criticism. Yep, we're full of angst, we complain a lot, we whine, we blame, we fret and worry and take everything personally. Well, who can blame us? What's the proper response to years of disappointment?

  37. I think the proper response would have been not to respond – at least to Jeff.

    Can't believe he's a Bus fan though. It's usually Packer fans that roll out the Viqueens insult.

  38. For the records, as a European Pats Fan and therefore a neutral reader of this blog, I have found most people posting here to be quite the usual fare of NFL Fans.

    The only difference is the religious meaning that is given to this "Super Bowl Win" thing.

    Especially I thouhgt the analysis of games to be biased , but largely fair.

    PS: What I find totally unbelievable is that anybody actually wastes emotional energy on Announcers let alone hating them.

  39. Anonymous8:51 PM

    Does anyone else believe that it is justified to complain about an official's obviously bad call, if it is positively a non-negotiable stinker.

    The unbiased commentators of the game all said that the tripping call was, and I quote, "a bad call."

    If the Vikings touchdown would have counted, there would have been no Favre fumble to return, two plays after the bad call because they would have been kicking off to the Steelers instead of chasing them down the sidelines.

    Also, I have read this blog several times over the years and rarely ever hear a complaint about an official or the indication that an official's call cost the Vikings a game.

    Even an innocent bystander cannot say that a bad call at a crucial moment does not affect the outcome of a game. And by the way, the Vikings came back from adversity several times in the fourth quarter in an effort to win the contest.

    I will just have to take this 6-1 start and whine all the way to the playoffs again this year.