Friday, October 31, 2008

Will Vikings have a problem with Houston?

You know what they say when the Vikings and the Texans collide...

Well, "they" don't really say anything, since the two teams have met only once before, with the Vikings winning the teams' 2004 meeting in Houston, 34-28. I'd say you shouldn't expect a similar score this year, but after following up a 12-10 win with a 48-41 loss, I really don't know what to expect from the Vikings this week. Toss in the fact that Houston is 3-4 after an 0-4 start (and should probably be 4-3, if not for Sage Rosenfels trying to imitate John Elway's helicopter spin), and this game could go either way, with virtually any score.

For now, at least, it doesn't appear that Pat Williams and Kevin Williams will be suspended for violating the league's banned-substance policy, which is some relief. On the down side, Brad Childress is still the head coach. Could the league suspend him, instead? Pretty please?

You know what I'd like to see? The Wildcat. I know, I know, it's a copycat league, but I actually had this idea last December, so maybe I'm ahead of the curve! Imagine Chester Taylor taking the snap, optioning to Adrian Peterson, and then maybe throwing it deep to -- well, obviously not Gus Frerotte, but hey, how about Tarvaris Jackson? If Joe Flacco can catch a 43-yard pass, why can't T-Jack? And Taylor's already got a TD pass this year. It would be innovative, unexpected, and exciting!

All of which probably guarantees Chilly won't do it.

On the bright side, despite giving up 48 points in the last game against the Bears, the defense really is playing pretty well. They're sixth in the league in yards allowed per game, and have only allowed one opponent to gain more than 327 yards (New Orleans, 375) and have held four of seven opponents under 300 total yards. On the down side, there's the special teams, which have given up way too many big returns and touchdowns, even if they have blocked a couple field goals. They're the reason the Vikings are averaging 23.9 points per game allowed (18th in the league). And hey, did we send our bribe to the officials this week? Because we obviously missed it last week.

One other thing to note about Houston's record is that the team's three wins have come at the expense of Miami, Detroit, and Cincinnati -- not exactly an elite schedule -- so they may be a little softer than first believed. But if the Vikings are good at any one thing, it's playing down to the competition, so expect this game to be contested until the final whistle.

Let's just hope someone keeps an eye on what the Williams boys put in their Gatorade.

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