The hobbling Washington Redskins (5-5) welcome the new-look, same old quarterback Minnesota Vikings (3-7) to FedEx Field on Sunday, as drama surrounds both teams and the door to the playoffs is quickly slamming shut.
"Playoffs?! Don't talk about playoffs. You kidding me? Playoffs? I just hope we can win a game."
Nonetheless, drama and storylines abound, and here are three most interesting factoids heading into Sunday's game:
- Leslie Frazier finally gets his shot at the big time. The Vikings sent Brad Childress packing after last week’s embarrassing loss to the Packers and slapped the “Interim” tag on the oft interviewed never hired Frazier. Since 1990, there have been 20 midseason head coach firings in the NFL and interim coaches have a 5-15 record in their first game. There are many reasons for this but the primary reason for the poor first game showing is because bad teams fire their coaches midseason. (Bonus Stat: 3 of the 5 victories have come on the interim coach’s home turf.)
- Brett “Mr. Wrangler” Favre is perfect when playing in Washington against the Redskins. Favre is 4-0 but the last time came when he was wearing Packer green in 2006.
- Donovan “I Just Signed a Fat Contract … Or Maybe Not” McNabb is no slouch against the boys in Viking purple. McNabb can brag about his own gaudy undefeated record as he is 5-0 against the Vikings.
We think one of those undefeated records is going down on Sunday.
Here are three things you can expect from Sunday's match-up:
- Frazier will not be bullied by Favre like Childress was, so look for a heavy dose of the Viking's run game behind Adrian Peterson. The Redskins give up on average 131 rushing yards per game. The Vikings average 119 yards on the ground per game and most of them are between the tackles. Translation: Albert Haynesworth will need to come up big if the Redskins have any chance at winning.
- The Redskins struggle converting third downs, but the Vikings are one of the worst defensive teams in the NFL at getting off the field with the chain gangs post the "3" on the down marker. Translation: If McNabb can't convert third downs against the Vikings and sustained drives then void his contract now.
- On the season, Favre has only 10 touchdowns. He has been sacked 19 times and has thrown 17 interceptions. McNabb has 10 touchdowns too. He has been sacked a whopping 27 times and has thrown 12 interceptions. Translation: This isn't 2004 and this once storied quarterback matchup has lost more than a little luster.
Although the Redskins are more drama than a night out with Paris Hilton, the Vikings are more drama than a night out with Snooki. The Redskins will find a way to win as another chapter is added to Favre's book, "Reasons Why I Should Have Stay Retired the First Time. And Second Time. And Definitely the Third Time."