Last year, the Vikings went into Arizona and smoked the Cardinals. This year, it was turnabout in a resounding Cardinals win. Will the Vikings be able to repeat the way Arizona rebounded from that loss and advanced to the Super Bowl?
For Vikings fans that are still feeling a bit shell-shocked over Sunday night's collapse against the Cardinals, they should keep in mind what happened a year ago in the same venue.
Last year, the Vikings were viewed as something of an upstart, looking to make the playoffs for the first time in years and winning their division for the first time since 2000. They were going to have to win some tough games down the stretch, among them being a road game at Arizona against the Cardinals.
Coming into the game as a prohibitive underdog, the Vikings scored 21 points in the first 12 minutes of the game, eventually building a 28-0 halftime lead. The Cardinals were overwhelmed in every aspect of the game – offense, defense and special teams. Following the game, FOX Sports analyst Jimmy Johnson wrote off the Cardinals as being dead – unable to compete with the NFL elite.
A funny thing happened on the way to their demise as an organization. The Cardinals were able to get two of their playoff games at home and got hot at the right time, advancing to within a minute of winning the Super Bowl. After being essentially left for dead following a blowout loss to the Vikings, the Cardinals found a way to circle the wagons and get things right.
There have been some that jumped off the Vikings bandwagon in a big way following Sunday night's crushing defeat to Arizona. But those people have a short memory. Good teams have a way of putting bad beats behind them. The Vikings have refused to get too high on themselves in the good times. Don't expect anything different following a humbling defeat.
While it may be a "glass half full" attitude, it's much better to have a loss like this in early December than in mid-January when there is no time to make up for it.
Despite some discussion that the Vikings-Panthers game Dec. 20 could get flexed out of prime time, the NFL announced that there will be no schedule changes in Week 15, thus keeping the Vikings and Panthers on Sunday night.
After being the first Viking to top 1,000 yards receiving in a season since 2004, Sidney Rice has his sights on another mark that has stood for a long time. Rice has 63 receptions, which is approaching some rarified air. The last time a Viking had more receptions was in 2005 when tight end Jermaine Wiggins caught 69 passes.
Former Viking Steven Hauschka is among the kickers being worked out by the Redskins after Shaun Suisham missed a 23-yard field goal that likely would have sealed a Washington win over New Orleans Sunday. The Redskins have brought in four kickers for workouts, but haven't said for certain whether Suisham will be released or if the team is just putting a scare in him.
From the "Getting a Little Ahead of Himself" Department comes this: Saints coach Sean Payton told Sports Illustrated that the Saints won't take their foot off the gas if they have a chance to be 16-0 in the regular season. Comments like that typically result in a coach stumbling into a trap game.
The families of Rob Brzezinski, vice president of football operations, and Rick Spielman, vice president of player personnel, will host their annual Adoption Family Fun Fest at Winter Park from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday night. About 10 players are scheduled to appear and more than 500 people are expected to be in attendance, making up families from the Children Home Society and the African American Adoption Agency.
Vikings QB Tarvaris Jackson is one of 34 NFL players participating in the "NFL Take a Player to School Day" on Tuesday. Jackson picked up fifth-grade student Keaton Kaisersatt in a limo from his house, took him to Westwood Elementary in Prior Lake and visited the principal's office and spoke to students about the importance of good health. During the visit, Jackson led kids in fitness activities, as part of NFL's PLAY 60 campaign, helping youth get 60 minutes of exercise a day.
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.