It's just a day until the Vikings' primetime showdown with their great rivals the Green Bay Packers – but there have been some suggestions they would be better off losing.
The reason? A loss for the Vikings could potentially mean a so-called easier ride in the Playoffs.
The main argument is creating a scenario in which the Vikings don't play the Seattle Seahawks, who humbled the Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium a few weeks ago and who would be the Vikes' opponents if they win the NFC North Championship.
If both the Vikings and Seahawks lose this weekend (which could happen, given the Seahawks are playing the dominant Arizona Cardinals), then the Vikings will face the currently 8-7 Washington Redskins in the nation's capital.
If they lose and the Seahawks win, they will face the Packers once again at Lambeau Field, but given their recent form, they are considered a potentially easier proposition than the Seahawks.
The benefits of losing has been a subject of discussion among Vikings fans and in this ESPN piece, albeit it looks at the benefits of the Packers losing.
It seems that the view across the border in Wisconsin is that going for the win is the only option.
"We have an opportunity to beat Minnesota, win the [NFC] North and get a home playoff game," linebacker Clay Matthews told ESPN. "That’s what we really need to focus on."
In Minnesota, Star Tribune writer Chip Scoggins said that any thought of wanting to lose to the Packers needs to be cast from the minds of any Vikings fan,
Yes, the Seahawks thumped the Vikings so convincingly here in early December that a mercy rule would have been a kind gesture. But all that guarantees nothing. Doesn’t mean the Vikings would even be favored to win at Washington. Or that they can’t possibly beat the Seahawks in a home playoff game.
The positives gained from being division champs and a home playoff game trump any matchup scenario.Vikings fans provided the best home-field advantage in two seasons at TCF Bank Stadium on Sunday night against the New York Giants. The place was rocking.
So Scoggins is in no doubt that beating the Packers to the NFC North title, and the momentum that would come with it (on the back of two morale-boosting blowouts of the Bears and Giants) would be the ideal scenario for the Vikes.
What do you think?