Angry Vikings fan cancels season tickets after lackluster offseason
April 6, 2007
After five years of owning Minnesota Vikings season tickets, I have decided not to renew. Believe it or not, this has nothing to do with the lack of excitement over the last few years, or the fact that the team has only made the playoffs once since 2002 (the 2004 victory over the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field). It has to do with one thing and one thing only: a horrible front office.
A year and a half ago when Brad Childress was hired as head coach, I was somewhat happy with the pick up, even though he looked more like he should be fixing my dishwasher than coaching football. He promised to bring discipline to the program and a winning tradition, something Vikings fans desperately wanted.
However, after one full season and part of his second off-season, I am already ready to throw in the towel on this guy. Last year, arrests of players did not go down from the Tice era. Starting safety Dwight Smith was arrested for indecent conduct with a 24-year-old woman in a club stairway. Plus, who could forget the Koren Robinson situation in which he was arrested on his way back to training camp and charged with a DUI, and later released from the team.
My disgust for the front office does not stop there. If you have not been following the off-season closely this year, let me shine some light on it. The Vikings top free agent pickups were Visanthe Shiancoe, Vinny Ciurciu, Bobby Wade and Mike Doss. Who? None one of these guys have ever amounted to anything in their careers. In fact, they make a team that finished 6-10 last season even worse.
In four years with the New York Giants, Shiancoe racked up a whopping 35 catches with three touchdowns, none since 2004. Before the Vikings picked him up, nobody had ever heard of Vinny Ciurciu, and Bobby Wade has been the brunt of jokes for many years, especially when he played for the Chicago Bears. In four years with both the Bears and the Titans, he only had two touchdowns, one on a punt return, pathetic. The only decent pickup the Vikings had happened this Wednesday when the Vikings picked up safety Mike Doss, an injured safety who blew out his knee last year after having a decent career with the Indianapolis Colts. If this sounds familiar to you it is. Last year the Vikings picked up safety Tank Williams who was just coming off of major knee surgery. Tank has set to still play a game for the Vikings, re-injuring his knee in training camp last year.
Now, I understand that it is impossible to get any free agent you want because of the increased salary cap, but this is disgusting. Even in what many consider a poor free agent class, you can easily do better than those chumps.
The funniest thing about this off-season involves the team’s wide receivers. Currently there are three wide receivers on the team who have had significant playing time in the NFL. They include Troy “No Hands” Williamson, Bobby “F’ing” Wade and Billy “Insignificant” McMullen. To top it off, the Vikings have been rumored to be interested in former Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Aaron Moorehead, a guy who has never had more than eight receptions in a year. What makes me really mad about this whole situation is the fact that either Brooks Bollinger, Tarvaris Jackson or a rookie will be throwing to these guys. To me it is crucial for a young, inexperienced quarterback to have good targets, which none of these guys are. Throwing these young quarterbacks into battle with these wideouts will most likely make them worse then they are, and stunt their growth.
Just when I thought the front office could not get any more idiotic, many of them have come out over the last week stating their disbelief that Vikings fans are upset. Owner Zygi Wilf has asked for patience. No offense Zygi, but what do you know about being a Vikings fan. It seems all you care about is the dollars. Even self-proclaimed team leader Matt Birk came out stating he did not understand what Vikings fans are upset about. How can a guy with a degree from Harvard be that stupid?Believe it or not, I am not one of the only season ticket holders not to renew for the 07-08 season. Many friends of mine have decided to do the same for many of the same reasons. The Vikings have shown their desperation in keeping season ticket holders by random phone calls. One day before season tickets were due I got a recorded message from starting guard Steve Hutchinson almost begging me to renew. Honestly, I do not care what Steve Hutchinson wants, and I am sure nobody else did.
Now I don’t want people to think I am a huge bandwagon fan. I have followed the Vikings since I was in diapers and I will continue to support them through the highs, which we have had few, and the many lows. I just think sometimes you have to admit your mistakes and move on. Now is one of those times.
Nick Hassel is a student at UW-River Falls.