Vikings Pro Bowl Preview, McKinnie-Gate dominates headlines

A very good morning to all you Vikings fans on this beautifully crisp Sunday morning. Apologies for no entry yesterday, damn did I miss a lot of gossip!

Well one story anyway, involving our “Pro Bowl’ offensive tackle, Bryant McKinnie. Following his earlier tweets that he wants to get in the best shape of his life, it seems that old Big Mac has spent most of his time in South Beach living it up in the club, rather than training with the rest of the NFC ahead of the Pro Bowl today.

Consequently he’s been kicked off the team. Now McKinnie has gone into damage control, posting all sorts of explanations onto his twitter page, mostly along the lines that he’s wasn’t feeling strong enough to play in the game and had been in touch with his trainer about this and was looking to pull out anyway.

There has been plenty of opinion on this from all over the web, but from where I’m sitting (In bed with a hot chocolate, watching Federer destroy Murray), the issue of what McKinnie was actually doing in Florida is irrelevant, though he could have been a little less obvious about what he was doing on his twitter. It’s more the fact that he should have just not turned up for the Pro Bowl in the first place. If he was injured, then pull out and let someone else take your place. McKinnie’s actions could well damage the reputation an event which was already struggling for recognition within the grander scheme of the NFL, and it’s certainly rattled a few cages within the game.

In contrast to McKinnie’s Pro Bowl attitude, our All-Pro, and 7th consecutive Pro Bowl selected guard, Steve Hutchinson is raring to go tonight, despite having shoulder surgery lined up in two weeks time. His “old school” view on the game centres mostly around the game just being plain old fun, and an opportunity to see a lot of players who you might not see on a given season. The Star Tribune also reports in the same article that Jared Allen is also looking to pick up a few sacks in this game. I think it would really be a hoot though if he lined up on both the AFC and NFC D-Lines just so he’d have another shot at killing Aaron Rodgers, who starts for the NFC team.

In that same article there’s some info on the 2010 season with regards free agency. It reports that if the new Collective Bargaining Agreement isn’t in place by March 5th, then the Vikings will not be able to acquire any Unrestricted Free Agents unless we offload some of ours first because we made it to the NFC Championship game. This could prove both interesting and potentially damaging, as free agency is something we’ve come to use to our advantage in recent years. There are more details on this story here too…

There’s a very good interview with Fran Tarkenton by Ryan Michael. There isn’t any real Favre-bashing in there, it’s more of a good interview with one of the greatest players ever to wear purple so check it out.

The Star Tribune have a good interview with Jon Gruden, who coached the Bucks to Super Bowl glory in 2002, and is now on Monday Night Football duty. Obviously Favre is the subject of the day, but he also addresses the age old question of what we have to do to get over the hump and finally win a championship.

The Saints have been fined a total of $30,000 for 4 late hits last week, 3 of which were on Favre. How about fining the referees for missing those calls too? Just sayin’…

And finally it’s time for a very muted FAVRE WATCH

And pretty much all there is today is comparisons to a “Classy” Kurt Warner who retired yesterday. I must say that Warner has earned the right to retire, but to call him classier than a 40 year old legend of the game who got beat to crap last Sunday and came back for more is a bit of a cheap shot in my opinion.

And that’s it, it’s b-fast time now!

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