If the Vikings move out of the Metrodome and the building is sold, the City of Minneapolis is asking for a $30 million parting gift.
The confusion over the status of the new Vikings stadium in Arden Hills has helped shine a light on how politics in Minnesota works. The City of Minneapolis distanced itself from being a financial partner in the stadium project until the Vikings found a partner in Ramsey County. Then suddenly there were of a couple of sighting options within the city that were made public in Minneapolis but rejected by the Wilf family.
It seems now that the city believes that if the Vikings leave for a new stadium at Arden Hills and the Metrodome property is sold, Minneapolis wants a significant parting gift.
In a letter to Gov. Mark Dayton, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and Minneapolis City Council President Barbara Johnson said the city wants to get $30 million back – the amount estimated that city has spent over the years on building the Metrodome and improving the infrastructure around the stadium.
The reason for the letter is that city officials learned that part of the negotiation process to help fund the state's portion of the stadium project was to earmark proceeds from the sale of the land on which the Metrodome sits. It is widely believed that, if the Vikings leave the Metrodome, there would be no way to keep it open because of operating costs and the lack of a big-ticket tenant that would help defray those costs.
It remains unclear whether the stadium issue will be subject to a special session or will have to remain in limbo until the regular legislative next spring. However, negotiations are continuing to break the logjam that has brought progress in the stadium deal to a crawl.
The Vikings lease at the Metrodome expires at the end of this season, at which point the team will be able to negotiate a deal wherever its chooses, whether in Minneapolis, Arden Hills or Los Angeles.
The Lions are, depending on what sports book you look at, favored by either 3 or 3½ points – the first time since 1981 that the Vikings have been an underdog while hosting Detroit.
The final injury reports will be released after Friday's practice with the probability of the injured players being listed. Fairley may end up being the only player listed on either team's injury report that doesn't play.
The Bard of Winter Park is back at it again. Chris Kluwe has made more out of erasable whiteboards than MSNBC's election coverage. He has commented on edicts from the league and added his latest entry Thursday. As players and media milled about the locker room, it was hard to miss the hand-scrawled message that was signed "Rog" – to represent Commissioner Roger Goodell. Under the heading "NFL Memo on Faking Injuries," was written "Anyone who fakes an injury shall be publicly shunned by having their official position changed to "punter" or "kicker." Remember gentlemen, this isn't soccer. Play like you have a pair." At the bottom was a cordial, familiar signature of "Rog."
From the Strange But True Department comes this: A former Vikings quarterback has let the Indianapolis Colts know that he could be available if they want him. No, not Brett Favre. The offer has come from Jeff George, the former No. 1 overall pick by the Colts who got run out of town. George hasn't started an NFL game in a decade.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.