Five Greatest Games? Not so much

A new Vikings DVD set entitled "The Minnesota Vikings Five Greatest Games" leaves out some of the truly historic ones and settles for more recent ones. No, this is more a collection of games that was easy to recover and transfer to DVD.

Last month, Viking Update pondered which five games that could be included on the pending DVD set "The Minnesota Vikings Five Greatest Games." Since it was clear that no Super Bowls would be included, there were questions as to which games would be selected and how the cut would be made.

Apparently, those cuts were made as the result of what was readily available as opposed to the actual greatest games. There are no games from the glory days of the Purple People Eaters. There isn't a copy of "The Catch" made by Ahmad Rashad against Cleveland. In fact, there is only one game that didn't happen in the last 11 years.

The lineup for the games makes sense, but hardly rank as the greatest games of Vikings history. The first came just last year when the Vikings beat the Giants, rallying for a 20-19 win as the Giants pulled most of their starters in the fourth quarter. A critical win to be sure, as it won the Vikings their first division championship since 2000, but the game was far from an artistic success and hardly something that would be viewed as one of the great games in franchise history.

Two of the other games are Vikings playoff wins – a 27-10 win over Dallas following the 1999 season and a 41-21 beatdown of the Cardinals following the Vikings' magical 1998 season. Both were very solid games from the Vikings perspective, but would seem to be included simply because of their significance as playoff victories.

There is little in the way of argument of the other two games. The first is a 36-24 win over San Francisco following the strike-shortened 1987 season in which Anthony Carter put in one of the all-time virtuoso performances with 10 receptions for 227 yards. The other came on Nov. 4, 2007, when Adrian Peterson set the NFL record for rushing yards against San Diego at the Metrodome.

Those who were hoping the series would include games from the Vikings' glory days of the 1960s and most of the decade of the 1970s may be disappointed to see that all of the games have taken place in the modern era in which the Vikings haven't been a dominant franchise. But, when they are released Aug. 18, you can bet that a lot of Vikings fans will turn out to buy the five-DVD set. However, they truly aren't the five greatest games played by the Vikings. They are more appropriately the greatest games that were easy to transfer to the DVD format.

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