Griffith Overrated?

Is Robert Griffith overrated? Not to Vikes fans.

Is Robert Griffith overrated? Vikes fans who see him week in and week out would answer a resounding "no" to that question, but apparently CBS Sportsline -- a website affiliated with the network that covers the AFC and likely doesn't see the Vikings very often -- claims he is.

In a website story that listed an overrated and underrated player from each team, Griffith was selected as the overrated player for the Vikings, claiming he's a "good player" but no great shakes. Perhaps before writing such a silly article, which had it' genesis in claiming Mike Alstott is the most overrated player in the NFL, the author should have at least spoke to someone who actually sees Griffith play.

In layman's terms, for the last two years Griffith has been the silk hat on a pig -- the best player on a heinous defense. Griffith finally got Pro Bowl props after two years of deserving the honor and being denied. Griffith is an excellent safety and arguably one of the best hitters in the league. Seeing as the author had to come up with somebody and couldn't pick Randy Moss, Daunte Culpepper or Cris Carter, apparently Griffith was the target of choice -- whether reality agrees with it or not.

For the record, the most underrated player was Jim (or as the national media insists on calling him "Jimmy") Kleinsasser, who has been given a tad too much credit for Robert Smith's success. Our choice for overrated players would be former Vikings -- a tie between Todd Steussie and John Randle. As for underrated, our vote would go to Dave Dixon, who does his job every Sunday without fanfare, but as well as any right guard in the NFL.

* Jim Marshall, who averted death last week after a serious car accident, appeared as part of his charity Life's Missing Link and its promotion of the Vikings Ride For Life motorcycle rally that ran from the Metrodome to Grand Casino Hinckley. Word from a source close to VU said the our own Bob Lurtsema came precariously close to having a near death experience of his own on the rally, which ran up Interstate Highway 35 and had other traffic -- with which the novice cyclist Lurts almost made a contact sport.
* Single game tickets for the Vikings' 2001 schedule go on sale at 9 a.m. this morning at Gate B of the Metrodome. For Vikings fans outside the drive of making it to the dome, they go on sale through Ticketmaster at 10 a.m.
* While the Vikes are assured of being sold out again this season, the same can't be said for the bargaining chip of Vikes owner Red McCombs -- the pearl of the Lone Star State San Antonio. With a game time of Aug. 11, the Vikings-Saints preseason game at the Alamodome still has 47,000 tickets currently being disguised as empty seats. The Alamodome seats 65,000 for football, but, as of last weekend, just 18,000 tickets had been sold.

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