The Seattle Seahawks have won two straight NFC championships on the back of a young superstar running back, an aggressive running game and the best secondary in football. If they take a third straight, they're going to have a heaping pile of luck to thank as well.
Minnesota Vikings kicker Blair Walsh missed a potential game-winning field goal from 27 yards out, giving the Seahawks a 10-9 victory in their Wild Card Round matchup. Walsh's kick came with 22 seconds remaining after Teddy Bridgewater led a six-play, 52-yard drive that put the Seahawks on the brink of elimination.
NFL Network captured an issue with the hold:
Former NFL kicker Jay Feely offered smart insight into the situation:
Draft analyst James Christensen seems to disagree with Feely's take:
Vikings punter Jeff Locke, who was the holder on the play, apparently wasn't much of a fan of '90s cinema. Josh Rimer offered a friendly reminder of a movie he probably should watch:
Aaaaand more '90s references, this one coming from Mike Vaccaro of the New York Post:
Making the timing even worse? The fact that Walsh was near-automatic in these situations previously, as noted by ESPN Stats & Info:
Adam Schefter of ESPN further elaborated how good kickers had been league-wide in similar situations:
ESPN's Skip Bayless came equipped with all the pun game:
Gregg Bell of the News Observer offered his take:
Mike O'Malley of Golf Digest captured the mindset of most Vikings fans:
With the benefit of Photoshop comes many memes. Many, many memes. Crying Jordan, Steve Harvey and a retired Blair Walsh jersey were among the highlights:
Jerry Micco of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette highlighted the excitement of the Wild Card Round thus far:
The Seahawks also have a flair for the dramatic. Their Super Bowl loss to the New England Patriots ended in Russell Wilson's game-sealing interception, and now they're part of another thriller. Kevin Duffy of MassLive offered his take on Seattle's propensity for close calls:
No matter which way you slice it, the miss changes the trajectory of the entire NFC playoff picture. Instead of facing the winner of Green Bay-Washington, top-seeded Carolina is headed for another clash with the same Seahawks team that has had its number in recent seasons.
Meanwhile, the bustling Vikings have to go home with one of the more heartbreaking losses in franchise history—one that will echo Gary Anderson's famed miss in 1998 to some fans.