The lucky guy/lady/LLC that happens to be Mychal Kendricks Elite Jersey squatting on LosAngelesVikings.com www.nikeeaglesnflstore.com/95_mychal_kendricks_jersey_authentic_black_limited_cheap.html might see an uptick in offers for that domain name this week. It's not just that MinnesotaVikings.com seems passé, but also that the latest stadium proposal expected to emerge from the Minnesota legislature appears to be dead in the water.
To make a long story less nauseating, the NFL's hopeful plan of delivering the Vikings almost $450 million in public money was shot down in the state's House committee by a 9-6 margin.
In an age where Republicans and Democrats can't agree on anything, representatives crossed the proverbial aisle to shoot down what might have been the NFL's last hope for a new stadium in Minneapolis.
The legislative game ball here goes to state Rep. Dean Urdahl, who asks the million-dollar question in reference to Vikings owner Zygi Wilf. "Why should we help a billionaire build a stadium he can afford to build himself?"
There's probably a great analogy about a goal-line stand from Minnesota's representative body, but I don't want to sound too excited about the whole thing, especially since Vikings fans in that state face as great a chance as ever of losing their team.
138847114_crop_exact Al Bello/Getty Images
The NFL's formula for creating new stadiums, up to this point, has been tried and true: Make enough friends in the local government to whip up support for a public subsidy to build your team a new home.
If that doesn't work, threaten to skip town or promise a Super Bowl. Hey, you catch more flies with honey. And don't let the weather get you down. Super Bowl week in New York City or Indianapolis is just as nice as a big game in Miami or New Orleans, right? Right?
The Super Bowl carrot worked for the Colts, Cowboys, Cardinals and the New York teams, all of which have opened new stadiums within the last six years with significant public support. All of those areas have hosted or will host a recent Super Bowl.
The NFL doesn't mind doing that; those games sell out anyway, and besides, most people don't go to more than one Super Bowl in their lives. The league likes doing that.
What the NFL doesn't like doing is dragging a city out to the pier and breaking both of its thumbs while it uplifts its team. Folks in a city have a hard time letting that go. Even a healthy smattering of Ravens fans (the older ones, at least) are still bent out of shape over the Colts leaving in 1983.
Although Clevelanders had their Browns returned to them, the state of that team makes it feel like more of a punishment than a resolution.
So what happens now with the Vikings? Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton says that the vote could prompt the team to move. But move where? To London or Los Angeles? What either of those markets offer in size, it would lack in a passionate fan base.
Those cities are just amalgams of people from other cities in their respective countries. Those football fans already have their own favorite teams, and the presence of live games.
138319609_crop_exact Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
The NFL has gone on record with regard to relocating teams; they don't want to do it. Roger Goodell told the football world just two months ago, "We want to keep our teams where they are."
But, owner Wilf has held firm that the team won't sign another lease to play in the Metrodome. The Vikings will play their 2012 games on the University of Minnesota's campus, and leave their future thereafter open-ended.
One obstacle in the stadium chase is the gradual devaluation of the game-day experience, which continues to pale in comparison to its televised counterpart.
Most diehard fans watch several NFL games on any given Sunday, an opportunity lost when factoring in weekend drives to and from the stadium. Why would fans routinely sit in traffic when they could be comfortably sitting on their couches?
Should the taxpayers of Minnesota help pay for a new stadium for the Vikings?
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We could reach a time when the NFL decides to forego stadium revenue altogether. Don't get me wrong; it won't happen anytime soon, but something has to give in to the NFL's almighty battle for fan dollars.
Fans aren't going to sit well with extra tax levies when they're already paying through the nose to support their teams as it is. And those are the folks that actually like football.
The Minnesota Vikings' battle for stadium money could be the first sign of the NFL's momentous pendulum swinging the other way. While other businesses and households have suffered through a nasty recession over the last half-decade, pro football hasn't shown any signs of slowing down economically.
At some point, we'll all have to ask http://www.nikeeaglesnflstore.com/ what problem the NFL has with one of its teams playing in a 30-year-old stadium. Furthermore, why do they expect everyone else to help them pay for a new one?
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With playoff races and draft positioning hanging in the balance, Week 16 offers up a load of intriguing matchups. Be it a divisional showdown between the Bengals and Steelers or an inter-conference battle featuring the Giants and Ravens, there will be some exciting football played this weekend.
Of course, there will also be some soul-crushingly awful football played as well, most likely whenever the Jets take the field.
Only two more weeks of regular-season picks for you to belittle and laugh at. Enjoy.
Picks are in BOLD.
Last Week: 9-7
Atlanta vs. Detroit
The Falcons made a big-time statement against the Giants. There's a legit fear of a letdown here, especially with Detroit's defensive line being able to dominate up front against the Falcons. But Mike Nolan's defense keeps the Lions in check.
New Orleans vs. Dallas
This Cowboys team just keeps finding ways to win, even with an extremely banged-up defense. Drew Brees and the Saints are playing better than they were early on in the season, but the Cowboys keep their playoff hopes alive.
Tennessee vs. Green Bay
The Packers may not be as pretty to watch as they were when their offense was lighting up opponents in 2011, but they are a more complete football team. The Titans won't stick around for long in this one.
Indianapolis vs. Kansas City
Andrew Luck will have to be aware of where Tamba Hali is on each and every play. The Chiefs' pass rush can dominate the Colts' offensive line, but Luck will make all the difference.
Buffalo vs. Miami
Ryan Tannehill should be the starter in Miami for a long time. Ryan Fitzpatrick's time as the starter in Buffalo is coming to a close. Dolphins fans may be less than thrilled with their team this year, but Joe Philbin's group gets a division win.
San Diego vs. New York Jets
This will be an ugly display of the game of football. The Chargers can't block the Jets' pass rush. The Jets can't move the ball on the ground or through the air...on anyone. The Jets win because they're at home and because Norv Turner is involved.
Hi-res-158425679_crop_exact Matt Sullivan/Getty Images
Washington vs. Philadelphia
It sounds like RGIII will be Michael Vick Authentic Jersey back for this divisional matchup-not that it matters much. The Redskins showed they can survive without their rookie phenom against a Browns defense that is better than the one Philadelphia will put out on the field. The Eagles' defensive line has been playing out of its mind, but it won't be enough to win.
Cincinnati vs. Pittsburgh
The Bengals are probably the better team-but I'm taking the Steelers because I can't see Mike Tomlin and Big Ben losing a big game at home, late in the year with the playoffs Michael Vick Limited Jersey in sight. That's it.
St. Louis vs. Tampa Bay
The Bucs were thoroughly embarrassed by the Saints. The Rams couldn't have looked less intimidating against the Vikings. The Bucs get back on track by running the football and getting the ball to Vincent Jackson off of play action.
Hi-res-158030161_crop_exact Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Oakland vs. Carolina
The Panthers are in the midst of saving Ron Rivera's job by beating up on bad teams, and Oakland certainly qualifies for that distinction.
New England vs. Jacksonville
Poor Jacksonville. It gets Tom Brady and the Patriots a week after they got beat http://www.nikeeaglesnflstore.com/ up and embarrassed on national television. You can expect the Pats to take it out on the Jaguars. Make sure you bring your Jag Rags, Jaguars fans!
Minnesota vs. Houston
The Texans will use their running game to keep Adrian Peterson off the field, and they will use Andre Johnson to score points. Peterson will be held under 200 yards for the first time in seemingly forever.
Hi-res-157368396_crop_exact Dustin Bradford/Getty Images
Cleveland vs. Denver
The Browns have the makings of a good football team. The Broncos ARE a good football team. It's almost unfair to Browns fans to make them watch Brandon Weeden while having to watch Peyton Manning play for the opposing team.
Chicago vs. Arizona
The Bears are a mess. Their offense is impotent. Their defense is banged up. But despite all of that, they will eat whoever is under center for the Cardinals for breakfast, and the offense will lean on Matt Forte to grind out a win in the desert.
New York Giants vs. Baltimore
Two teams coming off embarrassing butt-kickings. Who do you trust to shake it off and show up to play this week? Joe Flacco, or Eli Manning? Yeah, me too.
San Francisco vs. Seattle
This could be a tough game to watch. Not because of the quality of play on the field, mind you, but because the hitting will be so fierce that you can expect a number of injury timeouts. I tend to think the Niners are the more talented team overall, but on this night, in this stadium, the Seahawks find a way to win
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Who's to blame for Washington quarterback Robert Griffin III potentially jeopardizing his career while trying to finish his team's Wild Card playoff game against Seattle?
Many are pointing the finger at Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan, who insisted down the stretch of the regular season that Griffin would be healthy Justin Blackmon Jersey enough to play--and refused to pull him from the game. Griffin was later diagnosed with a potential ACL tear, though he is being reevaluated. Shanahan continued to call designed runs for Griffin, which his quarterback executed as best he could. One could be left to wonder if Shanahan, in a city that groaned over the early shutdown of Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg, would have received any credit for standing by his quarterback if his team had managed to hang on for the win.
Some would argue that Griffin assumed responsibility for his own safety, and simply did the best he could to win the game for his team. Griffin, whose style of play will lend itself to human wear and tear, didn't go down until a botched snap lead to a turnover near the Redskins' own red zone. Surely, Griffin didn't want Kids Justin Blackmon Jersey to be labeled as the next Jay Cutler, a quarterback who was vilified (and still is) for sitting out of his team's playoff game two seasons ago.
Check out our video debate of the RG3 conundrum, as I go toe-to-toe with Aaron Nagler to hash out the playoff weekend's biggest controversy. Enjoy our thoughts in the video above and leave us your thoughts in the comments below. As always, thanks for watching.
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