FanDuel - WFBC

January 24, 2010

New Orleans Saints Defeat the Minnesota Vikings to Advance to the Super Bowl: The Saints kick a 40-yard field goal in overtime to win 31-28.

posted by kirkaracha to football at 10:29 PM - 90 comments

Holy crap. What a weird game.

posted by fabulon7 at 10:32 PM on January 24

Excellent call on the crucial coin toss by the Saints! Just another pathetic excuse for an overtime game by the NFL.

The pass interference call in OT against the Vikings was terrible. Thomas couldn't have caught that ball if he was on the field by himself.

Those things being said, it's still nice seeing New Orleans make it to a Super Bowl. They have come a long ways as a franchise and deserve it.

God I hope Favre doesn't mention retirement during the upcoming offseason.

posted by dyams at 10:35 PM on January 24

I've said it before and I'll say it again: no more buttered popcorn on the sidelines. The Vikings turned the ball over five times and gave the game to the Saints. The Vikings lead in first downs (31-15), total yards (475-257), passing yards (310-189), rushing yards (165-68), and time of possession (36:49-27:56). A sketchy pass interference call on an uncatchable pass put the Saints into field goal range in overtime.

posted by kirkaracha at 10:35 PM on January 24

Welcome back, Favre....I missed you. Not sure if that's his last pass as a Viking, but it looked eerily similar to his last pass as a Packer.

As for the Saints, congrats...long time coming. I reminded of the Waterboy which I just watched the other day. "Who dat? Who dere?"

posted by bdaddy at 10:35 PM on January 24

The Vikings gave that game away.

You can't turn the ball over that many times and expect to win. Ugly, Ugly, Ugly.

On that last drive in regulation Favre should have just kept the ball and run as far as he could. He had at least 6 yards of open space which would have put them in decent field goal range for Longwell.

A couple of cheap shots, and a few questionable calls, but all in all, a exciting game to watch.

My season is over, but it did last until 9:20 PM on January 24th.

posted by dviking at 10:36 PM on January 24

The pass interference call in OT against the Vikings was terrible. Thomas couldn't have caught that ball if he was on the field by himself.

Yea, that was bad. Also thought that was a drop that got them in FG range. The 4th down play was too close to over turn so no argument on that one.

That said, I thought the Vikings got plenty of gimmees early. Those 2 roughing penalties that gave them points were BS. (one he was faking a bootleg and the guy hit him, just like you're taught to do...and the other he just fell on the guy as he was already falling down...not sure what he was supposed to do there?)

All in all, some bad calls both ways IMO. Football Karma from running up the score the previous week was likely the determining factor...the football God's hate assholes.

posted by bdaddy at 10:39 PM on January 24

Not sure if that's his last pass as a Viking, but it looked eerily similar to his last pass as a Packer

I was really surprised that he tried to force that ball in there given the circumstances.

Favre had a great year, and I reallty don't think you can put this loss on him. As I said before, I'll be surprised if he comes back, but I do hope he does.

As to Karma from last week, if that's the case the Gods must not be very strong, they almost blew that one.

posted by dviking at 10:39 PM on January 24

On that last drive in regulation Favre should have just kept the ball and run as far as he could.

He had a bum ankle, so I doubt that even crossed his mind. I was wondering why the even called a boot on that to begin with.

posted by bdaddy at 10:40 PM on January 24

They were at the outside of Longwell's range as it was, so even just a few yards would have mattered.

posted by dviking at 10:42 PM on January 24

An irrelevant question now, but can someone tell me why in the world the Saints called the timeout with less than 2 minutes to go on 3rd and 8? I know they were hoping to get the ball back, but there was no way Minnesota wasn't going to call a timeout there themselves? I was utterly shocked when they did that?

posted by bdaddy at 10:42 PM on January 24

Sloppy game for both teams. Viking had turnovers, saints kept hurting themselves with penalties. Several questionable calls, not just the last drive. I honestly thought the saints were poised to lose. Thank god favre remembered who he was during his last drive.

No two weeks of the favre circus, no stupid pants on the ground dance (at least he has those 4 touchdowns against dallas though!), and no city deserved it more than new orleans.

I'm going to new orleans in two weeks. Laissez les bon temps roulez :)

posted by justgary at 10:46 PM on January 24

I think they were figuring that MN would try to work the clock down to zero before kicking a field goal. Until that stupid int. the plan almost worked.

posted by dviking at 10:47 PM on January 24

I was really surprised that he tried to force that ball in there given the circumstances.

That'll probably be on his career tombstone.

posted by tron7 at 10:48 PM on January 24

Not sure if that's his last pass as a Viking, but it looked eerily similar to his last pass as a Packer.

You don't get to overtime in a conference championship game if your quarterback is bad. The Vikings wouldn't have made it this far this season without Favre, and the Packers wouldn't have made is this far in 2008.

posted by kirkaracha at 10:48 PM on January 24

New Orleans won the coin toss, Drew Brees guided it to the Minnesota 22 and Hartley, suspended at the start of the season for using a banned stimulant, split the uprights 4:45 into OT

I think he may have been using the stimulant again...he had a ton of leg on that ball, I think he may have been able to kick a 60 yarder.

posted by dviking at 10:50 PM on January 24

The pass interference call in OT against the Vikings was terrible.

Atrocious call, but the deciding play of the game was Favre not taking the open field in front of him to set up Ryan Longwell for a game-winning field goal at the end of regulation. I'd like to say "I told you so" about Favre, since that pick was the kind of forced throw that justified Green Bay getting rid of him, but I was dead wrong about Favre's chances this year. He's a machine. Childress was a genius for bringing him in.

Favre played an incredible game up to that pass -- with a bum ankle no less. If last week's "Pants on the Ground" had not become "Balls on the Ground," Favre would be leading the Vikes to the bowl. As much as I was pulling for the Saints, I think the Vikings more deserved the win.

P.s. The NFL's overtime rule sucks. Both teams should be guaranteed one possession.

posted by rcade at 10:50 PM on January 24

The Saints defensive line did a great job at pressuring Favre, and their offensive line had good run blocking. I thought the Vikings would've done better than the Saints on both counts, and I was mistaken. The Vikings defensive line couldn't put much pressure on Brees, and the offensive line let Favre get beat up too much after doing a great job against the Cowboys last week.

If last week's 'Pants on the Ground' had not become 'Balls on the Ground,' Favre would be leading the Vikes to the bowl.

I don't want to be a sore loser, but it seemed to me like the Vikings turnovers were almost all unforced errors rather than the Saints knocking the ball loose.

posted by kirkaracha at 10:54 PM on January 24

You don't get to overtime in a conference championship game if your quarterback is bad.

Well a few have made it with one that wasn't exactly good (Dilfer, Brad Johnson, Sanchez are a few that spring to mind.) Matter of fact, one really bad one does spring to mind (Kordell Stewart)

The Vikings wouldn't have made it this far this season without Favre

The Vikings won exactly 1 more playoff game and 3 more wins total than they did last year with "Tavarius Jackson/Gus Frerotte" at QB. They were a VERY GOOD team long before Favre ever inked on. They'll be a VERY GOOD team once Favre has logged off. Favre did make them better, no doubt. But the Favre we all know and love showed up today (the one who looks stellar then makes a throw that a high-schooler knows better than to make)

posted by bdaddy at 10:57 PM on January 24

As much as I was pulling for the Saints, I think the Vikings more deserved the win.

I can't think of a better reason not to deserve a win than turning the ball over.

Should have won? Maybe. Deserved? I don't get that.

The Vikings won exactly 1 more playoff game and 3 more wins total than they did last year with "Tavarius Jackson/Gus Frerotte" at QB. They were a VERY GOOD team long before Favre ever inked on. They'll be a VERY GOOD team once Favre has logged off. Favre did make them better, no doubt. But the Favre we all know and love showed up today (the one who looks stellar then makes a throw that a high-schooler knows better than to make)

Well said.

posted by justgary at 10:58 PM on January 24

The Vikings wouldn't have made it this far this season without Favre

The Favre giveth, the Favre taketh away.

posted by tron7 at 11:01 PM on January 24

The Vikings won exactly 1 more playoff game and 3 more wins total than they did last year with "Tavarius Jackson/Gus Frerotte" at QB.

The Jets without Favre made it as far as the Vikings with Favre.

Don't get me wrong. He had a much better season than I thought I would. But I'm not sorry to see him lose.

posted by cjets at 11:03 PM on January 24

I can't think of a better reason not to deserve a win than turning the ball over.

I just think the Vikings played better, absent a few inexplicable gift turnovers -- once at the end of the first half when Reggie Bush regifted them. They outgained the Saints by 218 yards and twice blew drives in the red zone. The Saints barely moved the ball in the second half and were saved from doom by Favre's ridiculous pick. If Favre does the smart thing there, Longwell kicks the field goal and all their mistakes are forgotten.

posted by rcade at 11:05 PM on January 24

Hate, hate, hate the NFL's overtime rule. (And I say that as a Saints fan.)

Saints did not deserve to win that game in terms of total offense (500 or so yards for the Vikes compared to around 300 for the Saints), but special teams (Saints punting and their return game were pretty fantastic) and turnovers are parts of the game as well. You cannot cough the ball up 5 or more times (even if you recover half) and throw two interceptions and win. This game was decided in the turnover margin. Too bad for the Vikings, who had a great year.

I do hope Favre returns, even though I believe the media coverage has been a bit over the top. If we can get more objective coverage and less "He's drawing up plays in the dirt and playing as if he was in his cut-off shorts on the freshly mowed field on the farm in Kiln, MS" stuff, would love to see him stick around as he's surely not done. I am in the camp as the rcade fire on this one, as I was fairly critical of Favre's return after his stint with the Jets, but he had an outstanding year.

posted by holden at 11:07 PM on January 24

I just think the Vikings played better

Agreed. By all rights vikings should have won. I think that's different than deserved. Semantics I guess.

posted by justgary at 11:07 PM on January 24

He had a much better season than I thought I would.

Same here. At the beginning of the year I said something to the effect that Favre, if he plays conservative football like he did the first 6 weeks of the year for the Jets, is unstoppable...but that I didn't believe he had the patience for that and would eventually resort to his gunslinger ways and cost his team.

Even though that is actually how his season ended, I'll still say I was very wrong as he played that "game manager" for a full season with Minny this year and as a result had his best season of his career.

posted by bdaddy at 11:11 PM on January 24

I couldn't believe the fumbles. Ridiculous. They gave it away. They were completely dominant. New Orleans couldn't do a thing on either side of the ball for all but, what, four plays?!?

I had my money on New Orleans and it was obvious to me. I can't really hang it on all Favre though. Six fucking fumbles! Farve had some heroic moments and was a 3rd-down machine. It should never have come to that ill-advised pass on 3rd and 15.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 11:15 PM on January 24

The Saints barely moved the ball in the second half

I think the pressure really got to them. Was that not one of the ugliest game winning drives you've ever seen? Wobbly passes, no clean catches, blown plays, etc. They did everything they could to cough that game up.

If we can get more objective coverage

Don't count on it. They're on sports news right now talking about how he has "courage" in his arm strength to make that throw, etc. Imagine if McNabb made that same throw?

posted by bdaddy at 11:16 PM on January 24

As unhappy as I am with the "pass interference" call in overtime, the Vikings shouldn't have allowed the opening kickoff in OT to get to the 40 in the first place. That was a weakness last season that they'd done a really good job with this season. Until tonight.

The Vikings turned the ball over twice in the red zone: that's a minimum of six points off the scoreboard in a game they lost by three.

posted by kirkaracha at 11:16 PM on January 24

Opening line for Super Bowl:

Indy 5

Total 55.5

posted by tommytrump at 11:16 PM on January 24

Brees had a better game than Favre. The running game was nonexistent.

Are people really surprised by the interceptions from Favre? Short memories I guess.

They're on sports news right now talking about how he has "courage" in his arm strength to make that throw, etc. Imagine if McNabb made that same throw?

At least watching the media wash his balls for one night is better than 2 weeks.

posted by justgary at 11:18 PM on January 24

Are people really surprised by the interceptions from Favre? Short memories I guess.

Well I can say, I was, even being a "Favre hater". With the way he played this year, FOR THE FULL YEAR, I had thought he finally was learning to play within his system and take advantage of the fact that he has a solid defense and one of the best running games in the league.

Now I believed you could put him out of that if you got a little ahead and forced him to make some of his old, knucklehead throws...but he wasn't in that position when he made that INT tonight.

In fact, I was not only NOT expecting an INT, I was fully expecting him to drive it down and score on that last drive.

posted by bdaddy at 11:23 PM on January 24

In fact, I was not only NOT expecting an INT, I was fully expecting him to drive it down and score on that last drive.

Oh, same here. I thought the game was over (or at least a missed field goal being the only chance). But in the big picture, looking at his career and not limiting it to this season, it's not surprising. Thank god for the saints.

posted by justgary at 11:27 PM on January 24

The play called that led to the last interception was boneheaded. Even more boneheaded was the 12 men in the huddle penalty that made them think they even needed to go for something like that. Seriously Childress, wtf? Don't you just try and run it for a few more yards and let Longwell try to win the game? The worst that's going to happen is overtime.

Or, you can call something risky, NOT get to try the FG, and go straight to overtime.

Favre was as good as you could expect anyone to be against that defense and his team's fumbles, I think. Keep in mind, the Saints did the same thing to Warner last week...

posted by fabulon7 at 11:36 PM on January 24

I think you have to consider fatigue -- not just his judgment -- as a factor for why Favre made such a bad decision tonight and against the Giants in the championship game two years ago. He looked tired in the pre-game interview, and by the deciding drive he'd been planted in the turf more than a dozen times.

There are now only four teams that have never reached the Super Bowl: the Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars and Houston Texans.

posted by rcade at 11:54 PM on January 24

I'm not surprised with some of the Favre hater's comments, but you can't pin that game on him.

Fumbles, most completely unforced...the 12 men on the field penalty...suspect officiating( that pass interference call)...suspect play calling...horrible special team play...and, yes, he shouldn't have forced that last pass. Favre threw for over 300 yards against the Saints, in that dome with all the noise, he didn't lose that game.

I thought the Vikes were in great shape there just before the end of regulation, but they mucked it away in grand style

posted by dviking at 01:04 AM on January 25

This game was like some Mandelbrot set of the Minnesota Vikings.

For all of Favre's career, he's been known for making amazing plays, interspersed with boneheaded decisions/interceptions.

For all of Peterson's career, he's been known for having amazing games, interspersed with game-changing fumbles.

And we got to see it all in this very game.

That said, I'm happy to see the 'Aints make it to the Super Bowl. I just don't think they are stopping the Manning machine.

posted by grum@work at 01:09 AM on January 25

Opening line for Super Bowl:

Indy 5

Total 55.5

I'll take Indy and the over.

posted by grum@work at 01:09 AM on January 25

I'm not going to make Favre the scapegoat here (although that was an atrocious pass to possibly end his career), because the Vikings' general inability to hang on to the football despite statistically dominating the Saints in the second half had as much to do with them losing as anything. But that last pass really sums up Favre's legacy: greatest regular-season QB ever, but in the playoffs, he'll find the most inopportune time to make the critical error that kills you.

Live by the Favre, and die by the Favre, I guess. As a Vikings fan, I simply hope that Tavaris Jackson learned some things from old #4 this season and puts them to use next year.

posted by TheQatarian at 01:14 AM on January 25

Correct me if I'm wrong, (not as rare an occurrence as the Saints in the Superbowl...or as rare as a forward pass in a Superbowl...) but didn't Favre sign for 2 years? Now, I know this is Brett Favre we're talking about, but if the Vikes are gonna sign him for 2 years, wouldn't it make sense that they made sure he was going to play both years before putting pen to paper?

posted by MeatSaber at 01:25 AM on January 25

Yeah, he signed a two-year deal. I thought Favre would've definitely retired if the Vikings had won the Super Bowl, and probably would've come back otherwise, but after seeing him getting the shit knocked out of him tonight, I'm not so sure.

posted by kirkaracha at 01:28 AM on January 25

wouldn't it make sense that they made sure he was going to play both years before putting pen to paper?

You can't make him play. You'd have to take his word, and that aint worth a whole lot (on this subject).

posted by justgary at 02:02 AM on January 25

Now, I know this is Brett Favre we're talking about, but if the Vikes are gonna sign him for 2 years, wouldn't it make sense that they made sure he was going to play both years before putting pen to paper?

NFL contracts aren't worth the paper they are printed on. Teams can cut any player they want during the off-season and not have to pay them a penny. Any time you see a player sign a contract for more than one season, every season after the first one is really a "team option" one.

posted by grum@work at 08:21 AM on January 25

The Vikings would welcome Favre back in a heartbeat, at least I think they would.

The decision will be Favre's. His pride made him come back this year in order to prove that he was better than that season with the Jets. I think he did that. Childress couldn't have sold a one year deal to the Minnesota fans, or the team, so he signs a two year deal knowing fully well that Favre might very well walk after one. I hope I'm wrong.

posted by dviking at 08:46 AM on January 25

Atrocious call, but the deciding play of the game was Favre not taking the open field in front of him to set up Ryan Longwell for a game-winning field goal at the end of regulation. I'd like to say "I told you so" about Favre, since that pick was the kind of forced throw that justified Green Bay getting rid of him, but I was dead wrong about Favre's chances this year. He's a machine. Childress was a genius for bringing him in.

I would argue that even more decisive was the boneheaded 12-men-in-the-huddle penalty COMING OUT OF A TIMEOUT. If that doesn't happen, the Vikes run the ball, call a timeout with 5 seconds left, and trot Longwell out to try his own game-winner as time expires. I realize that a 50-yarder is no gimme, but it's certainly within his range, and the pass play that was actually run wasn't going to get him a lot closer.

posted by bender at 08:54 AM on January 25

I think my blood pressure got to dangerous territory when that penalty was called...how stupid was that?

From another article:
"I know people are rolling their eyes or will roll their eyes," Favre said. "In a situation like this I really don't want to make a decision right now based on what's happened because I do know the year could not have gone any better aside from us not going to Miami. I really enjoyed it, to be honest.

"Just wondering if I can hold up, especially after a day like today. Physically and mentally. That was pretty draining. I am going to go home, a couple of days and just talk it over with the family."

posted by dviking at 09:03 AM on January 25

Or, you can call something risky, NOT get to try the FG, and go straight to overtime.

They needed more yards for a decent field goal attempt than running would likely get them (even with a strong leg kicker). And when you have a supposed wiley-veteran, 40+ year old QB, that has seen every possible defense scheme that can be thrown at him (as the media would like us all to believe), you would expect you can call ANY pass play in that situation and assume your QB will protect the ball. So the playcall itself should not have been risky in the least. Watch the replay, he's got a guy in the flat wide open that could have given them at least 5 yards...he's the one who forced it back across field.

The 12men in the huddle is all Childress...trying to confuse the defense with sets and get a mismatch on the field.

"Just wondering if I can hold up, especially after a day like today. Physically and mentally. That was pretty draining."

Tears in his eyes during these statements, so it felt like an "I'm done" press conference. But we've been through at least 5 of those so far, so who knows.

Favre threw for over 300 yards against the Saints

He also threw 2 picks. Now he didn't lose that game alone, but he certainly contributed. Contrast to his opponents who threw for around 200, 3TDs, and 0 picks IIRC. I know which performance I would take.

That is Favre's legacy in my mind.

posted by bdaddy at 09:26 AM on January 25

If you look at the end of that game, it's pretty crazy.

-Take an Incredibly Stupid 12 men in the huddle penalty. -Make a very bad play call that prevents field goal try. -Lose the coin toss. -Lose a potentially winnable challenge on the 4th and 1 call. -Be on the bad end of a very bad call from the refs that gives NO field goal position.

It was really a testament to how good that Vikings team really was that they managed to be in the game after making so many terrible plays. I'm no mystic, but it seemed like there was an invisible wall in the Saints end of the field at all the right times.

posted by fabulon7 at 09:36 AM on January 25

In fact, I was not only NOT expecting an INT, I was fully expecting him to drive it down and score on that last drive.

He was real lucky to not have another pick on the Vikes last TD. Throw was basically to the same spot and dropped by the defender.

As for bad calls, there were at least as many that went again the Saints which resulted in Vikes keeping drives alive and scoring.

posted by cixelsyd at 09:53 AM on January 25

Favre's legacy should be an iron-man streak more impressive than Cal Ripken's. He's up to 309 consecutive starts -- the longest of any player in the NFL, and at an extremely injury prone position. Ripken played 16 years straight in a less physically demanding sport. Favre's at 18 and counting.

posted by rcade at 10:11 AM on January 25

Watch the replay, he's got a guy in the flat wide open that could have given them at least 5 yards...he's the one who forced it back across field.

I don't have the replay but it was 3rd and 15, no timeouts. Whoever he got the ball to needed to get out of bounds or get the first down so they could clock the ball. I thought it was a difficult position to call a play in. That said, he should have thrown it away.

posted by tron7 at 10:17 AM on January 25

One thing I don't get that maybe somebody can explain: On the play where Favre was injured, I thought it was a flag to go for a QBs' legs? I've seen similar plays flagged plenty of times this season. Am I missing something on that play? Not saying it would have changed the outcome, just curious.

posted by jmd82 at 10:21 AM on January 25

The hit on Favre absolutely should have been called, but that didn't lose the game.

Any single play can be rehashed all day, in the end it was a series of bad plays/breaks that did in the Vikes.

posted by dviking at 10:30 AM on January 25

Folks, there's probably a penalty that could be called on every single play.

Here's the tally:

Vikes - 5 penalties for 33 yards Saints - 9 penalties for 88 yards

Clearly the Vikes came out on top in that department, even on the road with a more aggressive defensive style.

Face it, it was the 6 fumbles and 2 interceptions that cost the Vikes, not that they didn't get a fair shake from the officiating. They'd have won by 10 if they focused on holding onto the ball.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:45 AM on January 25

I'm not surprised with some of the Favre hater's comments, but you can't pin that game on him.

That's the nature of the QB position. You get more credit than you deserve for wins and more blame than you deserve for losses.

I just think the Vikings played better

Agreed. By all rights vikings should have won.

I don't understand this at all. The Saints defense did what they do best - forced turnovers. Even on things like the QB-RB exchange, the speed with which the defense got in the backfield makes players rush it and mistakes get made. The Saints were very effective yesterday at forcing those turnovers, and it paid off for them. And, of course, knocking Favre down so many times certainly could have made a difference.

posted by bperk at 10:46 AM on January 25

I don't understand this at all.

The saints had nothing to do with the 12 men on the field call. It was Favre who made a terrible decision to throw across the field.

I agree the saints did what they did all year, but they were also fortunate in this game, especially at the end. I don't think they'd disagree.

He also threw 2 picks. Now he didn't lose that game alone, but he certainly contributed.

The most impressive thing about Favre was his ability to stay in the game. When he first signed I thought he's play well but wouldn't make it through the season. I was wrong.

Nope, he didn't lose the game, but it certainly wasn't his best effort. Brees had a better game against a better defense.

posted by justgary at 11:02 AM on January 25

We noted Sunday evening that Minnesota outgained New Orleans 475-257 in total yardage in the NFC Championship Game. That differential is the biggest for a losing team in NFL postseason history, according to Elias Sports Bureau.

In other words, no team has outgained its opponent by more yards and still lost a playoff game. Ever. And as it turns out, not by a long shot.

link

posted by justgary at 11:08 AM on January 25

The saints had nothing to do with the 12 men on the field call. It was Favre who made a terrible decision to throw across the field.

While I'm on the Can't-Stand-Favre Bandwagon (I don't know what I would have done in a Favre v Manning showdown), I dislike Childress a lot more, so I blame the pass on the 12 men penalty.

And I'm with bdaddy: why were the Saints calling timeouts? There was no scenario where that was going to work out for them. Besides which, if they hadn't called the timeouts, the Vikings would have, so why help them out? I think Sean Payton's a fantastic Xs & Os coach, but the Pucker Factor may come into play in the Super Bowl, even against a rookie head coach.

posted by yerfatma at 11:20 AM on January 25

I thought the Saints called a timeout late because they had the wrong personnel on the field or something like that.

Thanks for the stat link, Gary. There's an element of luck and individuality in turnovers. There's no luck in a 218-yard differential between two teams. That's one team dominating another team.

So while the Saints are a worthy NFC champion and a great human-interest story, the Vikes have a strong reason to think they gave that game away.

It was disgusting the way the Saints ran up the score at the end.

posted by rcade at 11:31 AM on January 25

I don't have the replay but it was 3rd and 15, no timeouts. Whoever he got the ball to needed to get out of bounds or get the first down so they could clock the ball. I thought it was a difficult position to call a play in. That said, he should have thrown it away.

The Vikings had one more timeout left at that point. They were saving it to use for the field goal setup.

How am I sure of that?

When the Vikings got flagged for 12 men in the huddle, Favre was desperately trying to call a timeout when he noticed the problem.

HOWEVER!

If he had been successful in calling the timeout, his team would have been flagged for a penalty for calling successive timeouts.* So when the ref threw the flag on the play, I thought he was getting flagged for the back-to-back timeouts.

*Ask Joe Gibbs about that rule.

posted by grum@work at 11:51 AM on January 25

A key play was late in the second quarter when the Vikings fumbled on the New Orleans 4 yard line two plays after recovering Reggie Bush's muffed punt at the 10. A Vikings touchdown there would've demoralized the Saints.

Also, letting the Saints run the opening kickoff in overtime all the way to the 40 was frustrating, since kick coverage was a weakness in 2008 that the Vikings had improved on this season.

posted by kirkaracha at 12:09 PM on January 25

If he had been successful in calling the timeout, his team would have been flagged for a penalty for calling successive timeouts.* So when the ref threw the flag on the play, I thought he was getting flagged for the back-to-back timeouts.

Got it. The bar was loud and I thought the penalty was for two timeouts in a row.

posted by tron7 at 12:27 PM on January 25

The irony here is that one week you are the ones that gloat... and the next week you get to be the goat. I have always loved Brett and his wild play, but you don't throw into coverage when you are 5 yards away from a trip to Miami. You just have to know not to do that. He took a real beating (reminded me of last week in Minnesota when they beat the snot out of Oh-no Romo).

The thing I think is so funny about all of this is Brad Childress. HE is such an arrogant puke... he laughed at the fact that they were throwing TD passes with 2 minutes to play in a meaningless game....psych. Karma is a BITCH!!!! I think for no other reason than to shut up the Poindexter look-alike I am glad to see them gone. I couldn't take listening to him brag and open his pie whole for two weeks.

posted by Mickster at 12:34 PM on January 25

I agree the saints did what they did all year, but they were also fortunate in this game, especially at the end. I don't think they'd disagree.

In every game, some breaks go your way. The Vikings were "lucky" that the Saints kept getting penalties. The Saints kept some drives going for the Vikings that way. The Vikings were lucky that the Saints had trouble recovering Peterson's fumble, which ended with a Peterson fumble a few players later. The luck factor seemed to cut both ways.

There's no luck in a 218-yard differential between two teams. That's one team dominating another team.

This describes a team that absolutely had no trouble moving the ball, but couldn't hold on to the ball. So, they moved down the field, and turned it over or they turned it over sooner and gave the Saints a short field on which to work. I didn't see any domination. I thought the game went back and forth the whole way.

posted by bperk at 01:10 PM on January 25

I didn't see any domination. I thought the game went back and forth the whole way.

Well, we'll disagree. I wanted badly for the saints to win this game, and I think they deserve the victory. But at no time did I feel the game was in the saints hands.

Even with all the turnovers, and on the road, the vikings were set up to win. And they screwed it up.

posted by justgary at 01:17 PM on January 25

I thought the Saints should have been more aggressive in the 4th quarter. Didn't we learn anything from Belichick going for it (and not making it) against the Colts? The statistics say to go for it. The Saints had a 4th and 1 and a 4th and 2, and didn't go for it either time. They are going to have more aggressive against the Colts.

posted by bperk at 01:57 PM on January 25

They are going to have more aggressive against the Colts.

Agreed.

For what it's worth, I agree with a lot of what you said. It's easy to forget that at the beginning of the game the saints consistently shot themselves in the foot with penalties. And the saints defense has hidden their weaknesses by creating turnovers the entire year, so it's not shocking to see a few.

I just think the vikings were sufficiently dominant that simply erasing a mistake or two gives them a victory. I hope the saints don't depend on those types of mistakes against the colts. In other words, I think they must play better to have a chance.

posted by justgary at 04:02 PM on January 25

I should add that a key to the game was the saints defensive stand when Favre had them within field goal range. The vikings ran 2 straight running plays. It would have been easy for the saints to have a let down at that point, but they didn't. Both runs netted zero yards.

And it fell apart from there. If those two runs gain a measly 3 yards a piece I don't think it does.

posted by justgary at 04:10 PM on January 25

The Colts are also going to have to play much, much better defensively to match points with the Saints passing. Watching them getting burned by Sanchez and the Jets makes me think Brees is feeling pretty confident.

posted by dyams at 04:35 PM on January 25

What makes Brett Favre NOT run?

posted by justgary at 04:51 PM on January 25

ESPN's Tom Jackson applies the soap and water to the ball washing machine with this comment: "That's the thing about Brett Favre; he's not afraid to throw an interception. That's one of the things I most admire about him."

Apply the desired screen name and change "throw an interception" to "make a dumb comment", and we have a SpoFi tag line for the ages.

posted by Howard_T at 04:55 PM on January 25

I think any talk of the last Favre interception is really not relevant. He did try to force something but without about 10 more yards the field goal was out of range. The int was no big deal as turning the ball over was a moot point if the field goal was not going to be possible. What killed the Vikes was turnovers in the red zone, special teams allowing a run back in overtime and a defense that failed to stop the final Saints drive. For all the bad luck if you are going to fumble the ball six times in the championship game you just wont get to the Super Bowl nine times out of ten.

posted by Atheist at 05:09 PM on January 25

That's the thing about Howard_T; he's not afraid to make a dumb comment. That's one of the things I most admire about him. Whaddaya know, it works!

Here's the replay of Favre's late-game interception. The line of scrimmage is the Saints 38. Favre was on the 40 when he threw the ball. It looks like Percy Harvin was open along the sideline around the 35 when Favre threw the ball, but Harvin had his back to Favre.

I don't think Favre could gained that many yards by running. One of the Saints linebackers (#65?) is spying him and moving laterally along the 32 yard line. If Favre had run, I think the linebacker would've tackled him or run him out of bounds around the 36 for maybe a 3-yard gain.

posted by kirkaracha at 06:12 PM on January 25

I think any talk of the last Favre interception is really not relevant.

Of course it's relevant. Running, throwing the ball away, completing a pass, anything was better than an interception. What would they have done on 4th down in saints territory? We'll never know.

He did try to force something but without about 10 more yards the field goal was out of range.

Wasn't it a 53 yard attempt before the penalty? Which was easily in the kickers range? The penalty was 5 yards. So he didn't need 10.

Running the ball was a better choice than throwing over the middle. Maybe he doesn't get much, but I don't think it's possible to look at that replay and conclude that with much certainty.

posted by justgary at 06:37 PM on January 25

Childress and Favre lost the game or the Vikings. Childress for poor play calling at the end of the 4th quarter, and Favre for stupidly throwing that last interception. Would have been better to run the ball--limp and all--than to attempt that pass.

Congrats to the Saints. They'll need to play better to beat the Colts, and I hope they do.

posted by scully at 06:47 PM on January 25

The Vikings were on the 38 when Favre threw the interception. If he ran for 5 yards instead of passing, it would've been a 50-yard field goal. Ryan Longwell has hit 83% of his field goals from that distance in his nine-year career.

posted by rcade at 07:29 PM on January 25

absolutely Favre should have run that ball, any yards gained made it just that much easier for Longwell to try a field goal. Of course, we'll never know if he would have made that kick, and we might have had the same ending regardless. But, I'd love to have been able to have that chance back.

I haven't been checking the MN story line today, any word on that 12 men in the huddle penalty? Just wondering if anyone's owned up to that.

posted by dviking at 08:27 PM on January 25

Ask Saskatchewan about having an extra man on the field right before you're supposed to win the game... I doubt anyone owns up to it. And no one should - it's a team mistake, probably.

I wonder if part of Favre's NOT running was the screaming pain in his ankle? Who knows. I think he probably just thought Rice was invincible and could catch anything.

But again, much as it's easy to pick on Favre for the interception, the Saints have been doing this all year. Just ask Tom Brady.

posted by fabulon7 at 09:35 PM on January 25

on the play where Favre was injured, I thought it was a flag to go for a QBs' legs?

It's a penalty to LUNGE at the QB's legs, specifically if he's not being blocked or losing his balance. It's not a penalty to tackle the QB by the legs.

In the play in question, the defensive player had rounded the corner and was getting blocked, while losing his footing..he was in no way trying to take out his legs, he was grabbing the only thing he could (his legs) as he was going down. The problem came in that someone was hitting Favre high the opposite direction while he was tackling him low. But regardless, no penalty was the *correct* call as he wasn't "lunging" low.

He did try to force something but without about 10 more yards the field goal was out of range

As was mentioned, he didn't need 10 more yards. Longwell had already kicked a 52 yarder this season, so the line of scrimmage before the snap was only about 3-4 yards away from that. They would have almost certainly had given him a shot at the 55 yarder if Favre had thrown it away.

posted by bdaddy at 09:35 PM on January 25

Just saw this at another place, made me laugh:

Schaudenfavre - Taking pleasure in the failure of Brett Favre.

posted by fabulon7 at 10:01 PM on January 25

Regardless of the OT calls, the Vikings should have won that game before then. You can't turn the ball over 5 times in many games and expect to win, especially a conference championship game to boot.

As for the NFL OT rules, they need change just as bad as the NCAA needs a playoff system. I am tired of seeing the most competitive games decided by a coin toss and subsequent field goal. There is no incentive to go for the touchdown in OT. The current OT rules remove the need to get the most points possible. It is getting nery old.

posted by jojomfd1 at 06:22 AM on January 26

Longwell had already kicked a 52 yarder this season, so the line of scrimmage before the snap was only about 3-4 yards away from that.

Of course had no idea how many yards he needed. He said after the game that he didn't have a yardage target.

posted by bperk at 08:16 AM on January 26

They kept cutting to shots of Deanna Favre in the stands during the game.

Even when things were going well for the Vikings, she did not look like someone who wants to go through this any longer.

posted by beaverboard at 10:57 AM on January 26

The saints did a great job of punishing Favre, and that was their game plan. He was dancing in the locker room after the cowboys game. He looked like a dead man walking after the saints game.

posted by justgary at 11:12 AM on January 26

What makes Brett Favre NOT run?

Same thing I thought, and here's what I posted:

You thought the same thing we all thought, Joe your ankle's good enough to be in the game and good enough to roll out, so it's damned well good enough to go another 4-5 yards before you slide.

I'm also pretty tired of hearing how the Vikings wouldn't have been a playoff team without Favre this season. As was pointed out by Bill (#60) above, Minnesota was 10-6 last season with less talent, younger receivers and the utterly awful Jackson/Frerotte combo under center. I believe if you put Sage Rosenfels into this situation, you get almost exactly the same result not necessarily through QB play, but because the Vikes would have continued to rely on Peterson and Taylor through the second half of the season instead of succumbing to be "The Brett Favre Show" as they did.

posted by wfrazerjr at 11:40 AM on January 26

I don't know. Peterson seemed to be not quite right most of the year - offensive line problems, maybe. I think they needed that Favre threat to open it up for them. And I think Favre needed the Peterson/Taylor threat to keep his interceptions as low as they were. Probably they would have been a playoff team, but maybe not, and probably not the #2 seed.

posted by fabulon7 at 12:24 PM on January 26

Favre dove into a fumble pile in the fourth quarter, so it's not like he was averse to contact when it mattered. The more I think about it, the more unthinkable it becomes that he didn't run.

posted by rcade at 12:35 PM on January 26

Regardless of the what ifs, the bottom line is that no team regardless of the QB play should win a championship game turning the ball over that much. Much more important to the outcome that the late regulation interception were the two red zone turnovers which happened earlier. Farve played as good as any QB all year and was a big reason why they were there in the first place.

posted by Atheist at 04:22 PM on January 26

I think what was said it that Favre made the Vikings better, not that without him they couldn't make the playoffs. Having watched T-Jack, I can easily state that Favre makes them better. Could they have still secured a wild care spot, maybe, just maybe. Keep in mind that 10-6 might not have made the playoffs this year as both wildcard teams were 11-5, but 10-6 most definitely would have been the 6 seed and thus all playoff games on the road.

Those turnovers killed the Vikes, Favre had a chance to run for a few yards and then let his kicker give it a shot. Instead he did what he hadn't done all year...forced an ill-advised pass into coverage. I don't think his injuries were stopping him, I just think he made the wrong decision.

Vikings had plenty of chances, the game really shouldn't been close...wasted opportunity.

On the plus side, pitchers and catchers report in a few weeks, and the Twins have a new open air stadium!

posted by dviking at 06:55 PM on January 26

I like your attitude, Dviking. I decided this year that baseball season begins the morning after the season-ending Dallas Cowboys game. So I'm a week ahead of you.

posted by rcade at 09:54 PM on January 26

I like your attitude, Dviking. I decided this year that baseball season begins the morning after the season-ending Dallas Cowboys game. So I'm a week ahead of you.

I follow the Rams, so I was ready for MLB 2010 before the MLB 2009 season was even over.

posted by BoKnows at 10:02 PM on January 26

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