Monday, December 13, 2010

The snow gushed forth from the Thunderdome sky, like the opening call for Ragnarok.

And so the Vikings played a game in pretend Thunderdome. And looked as deflated as the Metrodome.

The Viking offense sure reminded me of 2007. If the opponent is stuffing Adrian Peterson, the Vikings are cooked. When the Vikings are pinned with poor field position, they're cooked. When the Vikings face 3rd and long, they're cooked. If the Vikings get down by a couple of scores, they're cooked.

Let there be no mistaking this now: Tarvaris Jackson cannot be the starting quarterback for the Vikings in 2011. They need to look for a QB answer for the medium term (a veteran that can play with Pro Bowl potential for 3-5 years: think Rich Gannon with the Raiders, Brad Johnson with the Buccaneers, Kurt Warner with the Cardinals) or the long term (the proverbial franchise quarterback). And that's not to blame Jackson for the dud of a game played by the Vikings tonight. But he does continue to show his limitations, and I don't think that next year he'll be one of the 32 best quarterbacks in the NFL (but do I even need to say that? Everybody in Minnesota knows this, right? But I hear enough national commentators talk about Jackson as a possible option next year, as somebody the Vikings need to see play to find out more about him, that it almost terrifies me into thinking he could be back).


  1. Berrian and Jackson are gone, that drop he had was inexcusable!! Keep Webb as he is one hell of an athlete! Trade up in the draft for Luck or Newton, or grab a youngish Veteran.
    This team will have to rebuild for a few years i'm afraid. I really don't have much hope for the playoffs anytime soon now. I hope I'm wrong, but last year was our once in a decade chance! We messed up 98, we messed up 09, maybe in 2018 we'll have another chance!

  2. So who is the veteran the Vikings can bring in? McNabb? Maybe get Rosenfels back? Jon Kitna? Make a big offer to Vick?

    Jackson probably can't be brought back. But there's not going to be a lot of options out there either.

  3. I don't know: a medium-term solution at QB rarely looks exciting when a team gets him (that's why he's available), so they might get somebody (I'm thinking somebody 32 or younger) that makes you throw up a little when you hear the name, but at least there's some potential (were Raider fans raving when they got Gannon?). But they have to try. They know where the answer isn't, so they need to at least try (and maybe fail) to find the answer somewhere else. Probably they'll end up in the draft.

  4. Time to suck it up and realize it will be a few more years before we have a shot at the Super Bowl : ( Side note: how funny would it be if the Pats win the Super Bowl this year without Randy Moss, lol, karma...

  5. Former Viking Shaun Hill isn't all that bad. He's a definite step up from Tarvaris. If they're able to draft a young QB, I'd be ok with Hill for one year while they rebuild. Mike Vick would be a homerun, but I don't see him getting out of Philly. Maybe Kevin Kolb would be available if they sign Vick to a big deal.

  6. Anonymous12:10 PM

    Per Peter King:

    "The Vikings need to play Tarvaris Jackson the final 12 quarters of the season. If he doesn't play, Minnesota will wonder in the offseason whether to re-sign Jackson for 2011, and really have no solid feeling one way or the other."

    Nope, I think everyone in the Vikings' organization has a pretty strong feeling on Jackson, and it's that he's not starting material. This notion that "the Vikings don't know what they have" is crazy. Jackson has been on the team for 5 seasons now and started numerous games. They know what he is.

    One reclamation project I happened to see last night because he's the Raven's backup...Marc Bulger. He wilted on some terrible Rams teams, but he could maybe be a "bridge" QB while the Vikings develop someone.

  7. Anon, that's exactly the sort of thing national commentators say about young/inexperienced/backup QBs because it sounds reasonable from the outside, and it is ridiculous for exactly the reason you say. Five seasons and over 800 dropbacks (attempts, sacks, rush attempts in regular and postseason) and there's some mystery the Vikings need to discover in the next three games? If they're questioning whether to sign him, the question is "can we sign him to continue as our backup, or should we go in a new direction at backup too?"

  8. Anonymous7:02 PM

    Favre is going to train all off-season and come back with a vengeance!

  9. Anonymous12:39 AM

    Exactly, the question isn't whether Jackson can be a starter, but whether he's even a viable backup. I tend to think he is, but he is a roller coaster ride and the Vikings may want a more steady hand for a backup. I think Jackson started yesterday 8-11 and finished 15-30; that's crazy.

    Jackson apparently has a turf toe injury, and given his history of taking forever to come back from any injury, it looks like Joe Webb may finally get his chance. I personally don't want to see Webb anywhere near under center, and wish he would move to WR full time. He might have a future as a receiver, whereas you need more than a strong arm and athleticism to be an NFL QB, as Jackson has shown many times.

    The Vikings should have ended this charade with Favre and placed him on IR a week ago. Now the Vikings are going to have to sign another QB this week, and that player is going to have very little time to get ready. If they had signed, say, Patrick Ramsey last week, maybe he'd be a viable option this week.

    As it is, unless Favre is somehow ready or Jackson defies his personal history, it'll be Joe Webb taking first team snaps when practices resumes. I realize Joe Webb drives everyone's fantasies with his athleticism, but I am quite positive he's nowhere near ready to be a pocket passer in this league. If he has to start Monday night against Chicago, I can't even imagine what the carnage could be like.

  10. I think it's pretty easy to imagine what the carnage would be if Webb starts against Chicago – something along the lines of 30-0 or 35-0 for the Bears.

  11. I don't think Webb would be that bad. And the other option is Patrick F'ing Ramsey...

  12. I have to admit that it has a pretty great name. Thunderdome. I would love that my team would do the same thing.