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Additional Minnesota Viking Commentary

Daunte Returns! 
Just to set the record straight, we fans didn't want either Randy or Pep to ever leave our fold.  We truly loved you guys and we all thought that you'd be Vikings forever!  As such, we were never given the opportunity to say good bye.  It was like an Italian ting', "It's over"!  He's dead!  It's over!  

Just cut my arm off why don't ya!  

Now all we have is memories.  Daunte is now in the rebirth of his career.  Which begs the question, why isn't he still a Viking?  Not holding a roster spot just doesn't cut it!  

With all due respect, I loved watching Daunte and if he were standing in front of me right now, the only words that I could utter, or stammer, is thank you for every minute and every ounce of energy that you gave to our organization.  It was truly a pleasure and I will cherish every memory.  However, due to the cut of the cloth, I see things as if I were looking through Bud Grant's eyes.  It was as if Daunte was standing next to yes men ... they wouldn't tell him the truth.  Daunte was flawed, and even the die hard fan could see his flaws as if they were brilliant beacons of light.  

Yes! Daunte was an awesome talent but he didn't master himself or the demons inside.  For example, I'll grant you that he did learn a good number of touch passes but I also vividly remember Daunte often reverting back to his high-risk awesome athletic skills.  The masterful defensive league minds used these skills against him.  It was almost a treat to watch as if I was observing an artistic ballet.

It wasn't so long ago, that a caller on a talk show asked Mike Tice, "Is is true that all your offense consists of is Daunte chucking the ball down the field to Moss?  Tice responded, "Daunte, is that you?"  Followed by a bunch of laughter!  Unfortunately, these words defined the crux of the problem!   

With Moss, Daunte didn't need to be patient, he just chucked it down the field.  This worked very well for Randall Cunningham, and then Daunte, for awhile, and then it faded for some reason over time.  Why slave over learning (mastering) anything when I have an incredible short cut (Moss) that works?  Over time, Daunte's teams suffered because Daunte didn't learn and develop the patients for a methodical ball controlling offense.  It's not my problem!  When Moss departed, Daunte simply couldn't cope.    

During his Viking years, Daunte was a stark contrast to Farve, Tarkington, Unitas, Elway and Montana.  He had his own way and he took the path of least resistance ... hey, it flows down hill.  Bottom line is if you can't control the clock, bad things happen.  There is nothing more devastating than a 10 to 12 minute drive (New York Giants-20  vs. Buffalo Bills-19).  For the Vikings, it rarely happened!


These words are harsh, but now compare these same observations to Dan Marino.  He'd never won the big game because of his incredible talent.  Why involve any other aspect of the offense when I can do it myself.  Why should I be patient and chip at a 3 yard gain on the ground when I can toss an 18 yard strike.  Problem was, Marino's concepts didn't work all that well, did it?  At least not in the big money games.  How could any coach over rule Marino, especially if you consider, and are caught up in the percentages (it worked most of the time)?  Do we remember what Montana did to the record setting Marino and his squad.  It's the difference between the masterful art of magic (the art of deception) and the 19th performance of Broadway musical.   

Daunte, to achieve the ring you must humble yourself to the concept of "team", and there will be no one that can stop you.  Learn from the past (league history).  Patients is truly a virtue!  

The Viking Ghost Writer
Date: 10.18.07

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