For the Minnesota Vikings, their playoff hopes, like head coach Brad Childress’ job, are hanging by a thread.
One of my favorite phrases that my grandfather would often use was, "If it’s working, don’t mess with it!”
Well, for the Vikings, things are not working, and something needs to be messed with.
According to Albert Einstein, "Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is insanity."
If the Vikings aren't getting different results, Childress needs to do something different.
That should start with benching Brett Favre.
Here are 10 reasons to do this before it is too late.
Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf desperately wants a new stadium.
The way the Vikings’ season is going, this team is falling out of favor with the fans. Any support for public funds toward a new stadium are sinking as fast as the Vikings' popularity.
It is difficult to sell a losing product.
This is nothing that a seven game winning streak wouldn't do to help make the Vikings’ the talk of the Twin Cities.
Even the lowly Timberwolves have as many victories as the Vikings right now.
The Vikings need to put together a winning streak before the comparisons to the local Division I collegiate football team start.
Brett Favre already holds the record for most touchdown passes and passing yards.
He is also the all-time leader in interceptions, fumbles and sacks.
He has won the Super Bowl and is a three-time league MVP.
It's unlikely anyone will be breaking his streak of consecutive starts.
Childress needs to sit Favre and protect him from further harm.
He has absorbed more hits than any other quarterback with the exception of Donovan McNabb.
If Favre is allowed to continue to play at this putrid level, it will only serve to dilute the stats of a fantastic career.
It’s obvious that Favre is not the same quarterback he was last season.
Like 2009, he arrived late to training camp, however, this year he was recovering from off-season ankle surgery.
Favre has not been a 100 percent healthy at any point this season.
His shoulder is hurting, and he has tendinitis in his elbow.
Injuries take longer to heal as the body ages and that’s for us normal folks.
With the abuse that Favre’s 41 year-old body is taking this year, it will take even longer.
Favre should not be in the lineup until he can perform at the high level that the Vikings need to turn this around.
A 100 percent Tarvaris Jackson, is better than Favre at 70 percent.
Brett Favre presents no threat to run the ball. Even if he were, it wouldn't take long to catch the hobbled quarterback and perhaps inflict yet more pain and injury.
Because he lacks the ability to run, he is unable to avoid the pressure as the pocket collapses.
As the pressure mounts, he has been trying to make things happen by forcing the ball, making too many ill-advised throws that have him leading the NFL with 16 interceptions.
With Tarvaris Jackson under center, the defense has to be cognizant of the possibility of a run.
Does anyone doubt that Jackson can outrun Favre?
With a quarterback rating of 72.2, Brett Favre is having the worst season of his 20-year career.
This, just one season removed from his best year in 2009 when is rating was 107.2.
A healthy Favre may give the Vikings the best chance to win but not this 2010 version.
Brett Favre has had only one game without an interception.
Adrian Peterson has only had three games where he has topped 100 yards rushing.
The more interceptions Favre throws, the further behind it puts the Vikings.
This results in the Vikings needing to throw more often, using the best running back in the NFL less.
Peterson needs to carry the ball at least 20 times in order for him to be effective.
In the four games Peterson had fewer than 20 carries, his average is 76.8 yards.
Contrast that to the five games with over 20 carries, his average is 120.2 yards.
More Favre and less Peterson is a formula that spells disaster for the Vikings.
When asked in a press conference last week if Brad Childress was losing this team, his response was that the team was in the locker room.
Statements from several players in that locker room that they were playing for themselves and each other, indicates that, indeed, he is starting to lose the support of the team.
The on-going friction between Childress and Favre may be tearing this team apart.
Perhaps the team is finally fed up with the favorable treatment, and the extra latitude Childress has afforded to Favre.
The hasty release of Randy Moss sent the message that dissension won’t be tolerated, yet Favre is not only still on the team, but in the starting lineup.
It may be too late to reverse the damage, but by benching Favre it will show that not even he is above the rule of the coaching staff.
Brett Favre’s poor play is taking its toll on the Minnesota Defense.
It was just a matter of time.
The rate that Favre has been turning the ball over has heaped tremendous pressure on the defense to pitch a shutout.
The Vikings’ defense opened the season allowing an average of 12.7 points per game through the first three weeks.
Over the last seven games, that has more than doubled to 26.2 points per game.
Once the best run defense in the NFL, they are now ninth, allowing 100 rushing yards per game.
The defensive line that led the NFL in sacks last season is currently 26th in the league.
Perhaps a change in quarterback may help to renew their resolve.
I keep hearing that Brett Favre gives this team the best chance of winning.
Here’s a NEWSFLASH!
The Vikings are not winning!
What started with close losses to New Orleans and Miami, are now becoming convincing defeats at the hands of the Patriots and Bears.
Sometimes a change can spark the difference that leads to a turnaround.
Many were hoping the comeback victory over Arizona was that spark, but after the poor performance in Chicago, it’s obvious the Vikings are still in trouble.
Brett Favre has already stated he will not be playing next year. (Yeah, I know, we’ve heard this before, yeah, I know, we’ve heard this before, yeah, I know—you get the picture)
Minnesota will need a quarterback next season.
If Brad Childress has any thought of coaching this team next year, it might be a good idea to see what he has to work with.
Sure, Tarvaris Jackson has had only 19 starts for this team, but let’s see what a season and a half watching Favre has done for him.
For Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers, after three years backing up Favre, he has established himself as one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL.
If Jackson has no future with the Vikings, then let’s see what Joe Webb can do.
Webb was so impressive in training camp that Childress reversed his decision to switch him to wide receiver. Let the rest of us see what he can do in a meaningful situation.
There’s nothing to lose at this point.