Not to be melodramatic but being a Vikings fan has got to be one of the most frustrating fandoms on the planet. Sure, there are other teams who are terrible, but the Vikings are worse in that they have been close so many times and have literally nothing to show for it.
Think about just some of the recent heart breaks I have endured in my time alive on this planet:
Then two playoff wins against the Saints ending in whoopings from the Eagles and 49ers respectively.
I get it. Other teams are terrible, they never make the playoffs or rarely have hope. The Vikings on the other hand are a whole other beast and last night’s experience is exactly what I am talking about. In the first half against the Seahawks they came out and imposed their will. As a Vikings fan, that was the first red flag. In fact, I was HOPING that the Seahawks would score before the half. Because, maybe, just maybe, there would be enough angst and fear to keep them on their toes.
What happened? The same thing that always happens: mistakes, turnovers, getting away from the formula that go you there!
Three quick scores and I knew, no matter what happened, we were going to lose the game. That would have been fine. The Seahawks are a solid team.
But that’s not life as a Vikings fan. We hadn’t had enough hope built up yet. We were going to take the lead and have the ball on 4th down with a half yard to go and we were going to blow it.
It comes down to culture. It comes down to leadership. It comes down to a history of decisions that are made that lose games. I don’t fault the call, what I fault is the lack of preparedness for the call and for the players to execute. A split second of vision and patience and knowing the line to gain and the game is won.
This doesn’t happen during the game, it starts in the offices and the attention to detail that is expected from every member of the team from the front office down to the trainers. That is why high performing teams have staying power. It doesn’t matter the players (talent is necessary), it starts with the culture.
The same can be said in business, youth sports, anything. If the culture is winning, those who are brought in are taught the intangibles that are needed to win in that arena and at that level. Until the Vikings change that culture, we will constantly, every week get our hopes up and then rip our hearts out at the last second.
In a related note, if we were going to lose, could we not let Seattle get the 2 point conversation for the over? Is that too much to ask?