I had the pleasure of debating Robert Greenfield over at the Packer Ranter site about who is going to win the upcoming Monday Night contest. I let Robert get the first and last word, but I am sure the Vikes won’t be so nice.
Thanks to Robert for being a good sport, and make sure to go check out his site, but be nice. People have feelings… and so do Packers fans.
RG: I’ve been asked to tell you why the Packers will win MNF. The answer is seventy-fold. But as I’m trying to keep this to a paragraph, I’ll start by saying no ones knows #4 better than GB. We know his history, his tendencies, even his tendinitis (both knees, elbows and right thumb, btw). And we know better than anyone else that you can’t keep him on the leash forever. After his best game last year, Favre began a streak of nasty INTs that left Jets fans feeling as though they’ve been roofied. What great timing that the Packers come into the Dome as the top ballhawks in the NFL, ready to give Favre a little bit of the ol’ déjà vu following last week’s LUCKY comeback. #4’s ego is flying high right now = bad news for the Vikings.
AW: For the most part I agree on your Favre take. But let’s face it, this is an important game to Brett, and he has a way of winning those “special” games. Unfortunately for the Packers, however, Brett Favre does not make or break these Vikings. I know, Brett not being a God is not something Packers fans can’t fathom, but it is true on this team. With players like Adrian Peterson, Visanthe Shiancoe, Percy Harvin, E.J. Henderson, Antoine Winfield, Jared Allen, and the WilliamsWall our quarterback truly is only part of what makes this team win football games. I expect it to be a high-flying, hard-hitting, dirty, nasty football game in which our defense and home-field advantage makes Aaron Rodgers wish he had never made the trip.
RG: If Favre doesn’t make or break the Vikings, why didn’t you stick with T-Jack? Are you now suggesting it was a giant PR stunt to sell jerseys and season tickets (hey, there’s some truth to that and you know it!). Yes, you’ve got some playmakers and I can’t take anything away from Peterson. Much like Alf, he is other-worldly (except that time we hurt him during a 34-0 thrashing in ’07… hehe). But you followed your list of Vikings playmakers after AP with Shiancoe though? Really? Mr. Six Catches for 49 yards Shiancoe? Pretty sure #81 wouldn’t even make our squad. If you want a complete list of playmakers, look no further than Rodgers, Jennings, Driver, Kampman, Woodson, Collins and Harris. They’re speedy, they’re tough, and they’re made to play indoors… muhaha!
AW: I know you’re a Packer fan, so visiting Vikings Gab is not a regular occurrence for you, but yes you pretty much summed up exactly why I think the Vikings got Brett Favre. Don’t under estimate Shiancoe, either. He’s itching for a big game, and given your current situation at linebacker and safety, don’t be surprised if it happens this week. And don’t let Adrian’s few (very few) struggles in his rookie year make you think you have some sort of way to stop him. There is no way to stop him, and if you try he’ll just run you over. Just ask Al Harris. From there, our defense will implement quite the snowball effect on the Pukers. Rodgers can’t throw if he’s on his back, Jennings and Driver are worthless if Rodgers can’t throw, and those old guys on your defense will be tired as ever with poor field position and our running game cramming it down their throats. Better send McCarthy some Tylenol, because he’s going to have quite the headache trying to figure out a game plan for this one. Or does he even do game plans anymore? Judging from your loss to the Bengals, my guess would be not.
RG: Wow, you’re a T-Jack guy! Yes, that does surprise me to be honest. I thought the entire state was already planning for #4’s Viking HOF induction. Mark it down as just another chapter in the never-ending “How Not to Run an Organization” saga, aka the Zygmunt Wilf story. As far as Shiancoe goes, I think he’s been itching for a big game his entire career. Really, we’re still waiting for this amazing Vikings offense to explode as hyped. You’ve played the Browns and the Lions, and as soon as a real defense shows up, it takes a lucky return, a missed pick, and a miracle throw to win. And your whole snowball theory is melted because it assumes you’ll have the ball. I know it’s something foreign to you, but our QB can do more than just throw (Favre) or just run (Jackson). He’s a complete QB with more moves than the Michael Jackson video anthology. So even if the Turbo Lax Williams boys squeak though, Rodgers can make a play on his feet. Either way, do you really think you’ll be able to cover the Dynamic Duo of Driver and Jennings? And for the record, I’d almost want to bandwagon your statement on the Bengals but after having taken down the Steelers, they are officially world-beaters, surprising… well… the world. I even took your advice and Al Harris still feels bad about tearing the AP’s LCL in ’07.
AW: Tell Al not to worry, #28 is an incredibly forgiving guy. Even cheap shots from has-beens don’t keep Adrian from churning out the yards. Oh, yes, the much feared Bengals are finally for real! Watch out for the Bengals everyone! They’re going to keep on rolling over everyone! Besides losing to the world-beating Broncos (umm, what?) they’re a super awesome football team. Please, you guys tanked that one, showed your weaknesses and will now have them exploited worse than Erin Anderson on a bad day. Any day I’d take Wilf over your “share holders” and incompetent putz Ted Thompson. People can argue “lucky” all day long, because maybe the Niners were just “lucky” they weren’t down by a huge margin at halftime after a blocked field goal. or maybe they were “lucky” that they were called for a delay of game when E.J. intercepted Hill’s pass in the end zone. Luck or no luck, we didn’t lose to a team as crappy as the Bungles and the Packers have. We are winning more games, scoring more points, and giving up fewer points than the Pack. That’s all I need to know to think the Vikes have the edge.
RG: Totally agree – you know it’s a messed-up season when the Broncos, Bungles and Vikings are combined 8-1. Well, the good news about the NFL is things usually even out over the course of the year. Would it shock anyone if you three going 1-8 the next three weeks? That’s what I thought. Sure, bring Wario on over! They’re opening a new wing of the Pro Shop and we need a good PR guy. And while he’s here, he can stop by Lambeau and take notes on the greatest stadium (and fans) in the NFL and list them under “Things The Vikings Will Never Have.” I only saw highlights from Niners game but from what I understand, they had you beat. But a lucky win is a win nonetheless – congratulations. We’ll see how long it lasts. Instead of inflating victories against three of the worst teams from last year, let me remind you that GB has owned MN as of late, winning 5 out of the last 6. History, my friend, is on our side. Everything aside, here’s to a great game! Thanks for the opportunity to do a little trash talkin’!
Adam’s Prediction: Vikings 34, Packers 27
Robert’s Prediction: Packers 24, Vikings 20