Thursday, July 29, 2010

They finally broke me.

As the Vikings get ready to start training camp, I think about all the other years the Vikings got ready for training camp. After the '98 season, I began every Viking season believing sincerely that this--THIS--was the year the Vikings were finally going to win the Super Bowl. You may look back and think I was deranged going into '01, '02, '03, '06, '07, or maybe even all of them, but for each season, I had reasons to believe that this was it.

And now, as the Vikings get ready for the 2010 season, I have to be honest: I do not believe the Vikings will win the Super Bowl this year. For the first time in over a decade, I do not have that unbridled hope. Everything went right in 2009 but they blew the NFC Championship Game with turnovers and a 12 men in the huddle penalty. I just don't believe 2010 can be better. I can talk myself into it, and I'm sure there are moments where I have real hope. But mostly, I don't believe. My spirits have finally been crushed by this team.

But you know what? That's OK. All my believing never actually willed the Vikings to a Super Bowl, so it doesn't really matter, and the year I don't believe might be the year they actually do it (see how I talk myself into things?). And it's also the best thing for my sports-sanity (barely hanging onto the ledge at this point). Spending every year believing "This is the year!" also means watching every play of every game with intense, emotional, passionate desperation. Maybe that will fade a bit this year (it reached its peak during that NFC Championship game). Maybe I'll enjoy football a little more.

So how about you? Still clinging to the "This is the year!" hopes? It's not like I gave them up; it's more that they were taken away from me.


  1. Anonymous9:51 AM

    I don't know that everything went right last year. The running game was inconsistent and lacked explosiveness throughout the year. The line was young and beat up. Key players on defense were injured. The recievers were exciting but green or, in the case of Berrian, were underwhelming. They blew two games that cost them homefield through the playoffs (against the Steelers and the Bears) and played without intensity in two other games. This is a team that talked about being a super bowl team but didn't know how to do it. Now they know every game is the game to bring it. The offensive line should work together better, the recievers will be better, Peterson has spent six months hearing about his flaws and I'm sure he'll come out determined, and the secondary has been bolstered. Assuming Favre returns full of fire I'm absolutely certain this team will set the pace in the league this year. I look forward to the Thursday game against the Saints.


  2. Last year's ending felt like a bad breakup at the time, and now it feels like a bad breakup that's not showing signs of healing 6 months later. Sure, the pain isn't as sharp and I don't even think about it every day anymore, but there's a low, soft melancholy note playing in the background of life's soundtrack that hasn't gone away.

    I don't see a reason to be more excited now than I was at the beginning of 2009's season, and we all know how that ended. They need to cut the crap and/or get a couple of good bounces to make it past a conference championship game this year. I won't hold my breath.