Minnesota was left limping from the battlefield in a 27-22 victory against the New York Jets, looking like the testy team we’ve seen all season. Very rarely at points in this season have looked “legit”. It’s hurt the team’s reputation, the question is what’ll settle it?
At this point in the season, Minnesota’s running low on games that can prove their legitimacy. They have statistically the easiest remaining schedule in the league, giving them little room to make a statement. Many believe the definitive games have already passed us by, and Minnesota managed to only capture a handful of them. The Eagles and Cowboys losses are going to sting as they remain some of the few games Minnesota really would have proven themselves in, but they didn’t.
Both losses were blowouts in which Minnesota only scored once in each game, leaving much to be desired. Minnesota would need an undoubtedly convincing game against any opponents in the next few weeks to even start a new narrative. People at this point in the season have made their final judgments in what they think of teams, meaning Minnesota just may have to win in the playoffs to make some progress, and even then it’d have to be more than a wildcard win.
Minnesota needs to prove they’ve earned their 2nd Seed placement in the NFC, and that’s looking like it would need to be a table run to prove something. Everything however, rests on their own shoulders. The talent is spread across the roster and we’re aware of their capabilities with how they’ve performed, it’s just about showing up when it matters.
Maybe dropping the 1 score game trend would be a good start, perhaps staying consistently good at something throughout a game can give this team some semblance of an identity. Either way, Minnesota’s learning of the growing pains of contenders, best to handle the adversity with confidence.