Playoff Scenario Favors Brett Favre, Vikings Fans

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Playoff Scenario Favors Brett Favre, Vikings Fans
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It is only week 11 and a lot can happen during the rest of the season, but the top two teams in the NFC are going to be hard to catch.

The two front runners in the NFC are the New Orleans Saints and Minnesota Vikings, both distancing themselves from the pack and both having favorable schedules the rest of the way.

Barring major injuries, chances are the Vikings and Saints will be seeded No. 1 and 2 for the NFC playoffs.  This is a good thing for Brett Favre and the Vikings.

Assuming that the Saints get the No. 1 seed and the Vikings get the No. 2 seed (or vice versa), the Vikings will play all their playoff games in a dome which allows Favre to play to his full potential.

Ironically, dome games once meant disaster for Favre, while cold weather equaled success during the early part of his career.  

During his younger days, Favre was the “Abominable Snowman” rifling frigid ice daggers through the heart of opposing teams when playing in games 34 degrees or colder. 

In 2002, his record was 35-0 when temperatures were below 34 degrees.  By December 2009 his record was 66-23 when temperatures dipped below 45 degrees and 43-6 at home, including playoffs, in temperatures less than 34 degrees.

It became more apparent that the “Abominable Snowman” was melting in cold weather when the Packers met the N.Y. Giants in the 2007 NFC Championship Game. 

Like the “Abominable Snowman,” Favre had a hard enough time putting  “Once Step in Front of the Other” in subzero temperatures, yet alone completing crucial third down passes.

Favre tossed two interceptions and failed to move his offense during critical points of the game. 

More telling was how Favre shivered and clenched his body like a cold, wet dog after every play.  I kept waiting for him to freeze solid taking the ball under center (picture that).  

He was miserable, and he gave the impression that he was getting too old for it and he didn’t need to tolerate that kind of weather when he could retire with millions in the bank.  Favre even confessed he had a hard time handling the extreme cold temperatures.

Every time Favre came off the field it looked like he was fantasizing about riding his tractor in Mississippi, or perhaps he was having visions of Brad Childress smiling and waving him into the Metrodome.

Not one to hold back his opinion, Favre likely made his distaste for cold weather clear in the Packer locker room.

It may have even weighed heavily in General Manager Ted Thompson’s decision to ship Favre to the Jets instead of the Buccaneers hoping he would fail once the leaves fell off the trees.  

It is no wonder that Favre’s play declined with the Jets as the more extreme temperatures moved in.

The older Favre gets, the tougher it is for him to play in cold weather and the easier it is for him to play in mild temperatures.  Old skin gets thinner and doesn’t provide the insulation young skin can.

Favre used to have a hard time playing in domes.  At one time Favre was 2-9 playing at the Metrodome, but recently won 4 out 5 before playing with the Vikings. 

His exceptional performance this year makes it clear that old man Favre is much happier playing inside.

If the Vikings continue to win, the road to the Super Bowl will go through a dome.  Fortunately for Favre, the Vikings will not have to go through Green Bay.  The Packers would love to have another stab at Favre in subzero temperatures.

I can see Favre using his Superstar power to lobby NFL schedule makers into not scheduling a Viking matchup at Green Bay in December next year, and it looks like he plans on coming back.

Instead, Favre won’t shiver or anguish his way through the playoffs knowing that the worst case scenario would be playing in his own Mississippi backyard at the Superdome,  venue of his only Super Bowl victory and one of the few domes Favre has always had success in. 

It won’t be easy. We all know that Drew Brees performs better at home in the comforts of the Superdome.  During the 2008/2009 season, Brees tossed 36 touchdown passes at home vs. 17 on the road. 

But lately the Saints have been struggling with injuries and poor execution while the Vikings appear focused and steady despite the loss to Pittsburgh.

The Saints also have a tough divisional away schedule and a matchup against New England at home.  The Vikings' toughest opponents are Cincinnati and N.Y. Giants, but both games are at home.

The Saints are venerable and could very well lose in the playoffs, but that just means the Vikings would have Metro-domefield advantage unless they start losing.

The scenario couldn’t have worked out better for Favre and especially the Viking fans.  A Super Bowl appearance can only give hope that the friendly fans of Minnesota won’t lose another team to L.A.

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