2 Purple Dreams and 1 Bears Nightmare

Photo Credit: Jon Durr (USA TODAY Sports)

As often as the Minnesota Vikings face the Chicago Bears in the season’s final game, this one feels a bit different due to the whole out-of-the-playoffs thing. This game has a very melancholy vibe thanks to last week’s fiasco, but let’s see what the game can tell us about the future of this team – even if it doesn’t mean much right now.

Here are two dream scenarios and one nightmare to wrap up this season.

The Vikings lose (hear me out)

As much as I hate rooting for a loss — trust me, I do — it might be time to disconnect from the team for one week and hope for a (close) loss against the Bears this week.

Yes, it would provide a higher first-round draft pick, but it also gives them a higher choice every round after, too. I don’t think that gets talked about enough unless you listen to Cory Cove on the Power Trip morning show. It’s no secret, but it’s essentially multiplying the value of your picks throughout a draft, even if it’s only one selection higher.

Can you blame me for wanting to lose a game that holds no weight for the franchise’s future? The Vikings will have to draft starters to quickly rebuild or invest in later picks they can develop into stars. Either way, they need capital, and it isn’t a year that Rick Spielman should focus on trading valuable picks to drop back.

But I agree with Noah Cierzan and fully expect Mike Zimmer to come out with the best game plan of his life and destroy all of Matt Nagy’s hopes and dreams in a meaningless game because that’s just what the Vikings tend to do.

Kirk Cousins balls out

No matter what side of the Kirk Cousins debate you fall on, it benefits the Vikings to have him play well this week.

There are always teams interested in veteran quarterbacks, and Cousins fits that bill. If he gets traded, he needs to have an excellent game to leave a good impression on suitors and maximize his value.

If Cousins remains in Minnesota, which seems like the most likely outcome right now, it proves that he will give the team his all no matter the circumstances. Unfortunately, players around the league have occasionally had shaky returns from COVID. Cousins self-reported having “mild symptoms.”

He’s not going to be out of game shape by any means, but it is something to consider if he looks off. I’m not a Cousins defender, but I acknowledge he’s the best QB the Vikings have had since Brett Favre (except one dope Sam Bradford game), so I’m not going to let one more lousy game creep into my psyche. Unless, of course, I get into a Twitter argument about it.

Injuries to key Vikings players

This should be the nightmare every week, but I sense a true rebuild in Minnesota’s near future, so they need all of the assets they can get to barter. It’s a utilitarian view of the team, but that’s the angle I’m arguing here. (And, of course, I want all the players to be healthy, regardless.)

It would be devastating for the Vikings if they plan on moving on from Dalvin Cook, Eric Kendricks, or Anthony Barr, and they end up injured. If Zimmer is on his way out, some of his defensive disciples may be gone as well based on the team’s performance.

Whatever the outcome of this game, the Vikings better not lose any starters because this is an excellent opportunity to give depth players a shot to see what they’re made of. But I guess the front office disagrees. They’d rather play this game as if it were their chance to get into the playoffs, even though there’s no shot.

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