1.) First, Seth has posted a lengthy (and very interesting) Q&A over at Seth Speaks. I strongly encourage you to check it out if you haven't done so yet.
2.) Ok, so the Vikings didn't look all that good tonight in beating the Bears 20-13. The point is, they still won the ballgame, and they're still in the drivers seat for a playoff spot. In fact, I think they're actually in the drivers seat for 5th place in the Conference. The Vikings remaining games are at home against Washington and at Denver. The Giants, currently in 5th, play at Buffalo and then finish the season off against New England. The Vikings hold the tiebreaker over the Giants thanks to the beatdown earlier this year when the Vikings won head-to-head, so if the Vikings go 0-2 the Vikings need just 1 more win to finish 5th, and if the Giants pick up one win the Vikings can still get fifth by winning out. I suspect that there's a very good chance of that happening.
3.) The Vikings obviously can't look past Washington next week, but they'll be in decent shape even if they lose to the Redskins. If Washington wins, both teams will be 8-7, and obviously the Redskins would be in control of their own destiny thanks to the head-to-head win. However, in Week 17 the Redskins have to face the Cowboys, while the Vikings will be facing the Broncos. Depending on how the games go next week, the Cowboys could be fighting for home field advantage in that game, while the Broncos will have nothing but pride to play for. To me, that would swing as advantage Vikings. Still, a win next week would be much more desirable -- so let's hope the offense plays a bit better next week than it did this week against the Bears.
4.) I can't understand why Billy Beane isn't facing more criticism for the imminent self-destruction of his team. I'm going to try to write up a post on this later this week, but here's how I see things -- it's one thing to talk about trading an ace for young players if, like the Twins, you have just one year left on said ace's deal and aren't going to be able to re-sign him. It's quite another to trade the ace (Haren) and more than likely another very good pitcher (Blanton) for prospects when they are nowhere near free agency. I realize that Beane felt it was time to restock the farm system, and also that the team wasn't going to be competitive even with Haren and Blanton this year. Nonetheless, this strikes me as a bad move. The Twins get criticized for not retaining their players, but at least the Twins let those guys walk away when they become too expensive, or trade them when their departure is imminent. The A's seem infatuated by the idea of acquiring prospects, and I think the Haren trade was an overreaction to the situation that the team faced. Sorry, but I just don't get it.
Labels: Nightly Notes