We couldn't have been the only sick individual to find the irony and torture in yesterday's game-clinching play for the Vikings. A rollout to the right? Time winding down? Brett Favre with the ball in his hands? And ... he tucks it down and runs for 10 yards -- his longest run in purple? And the Vikings ... win?

It doesn't take much these days to make us think back to 2009. But that run was too much. What if Favre had done that in the NFC title game instead of throwing late over the middle? Yeah, we'll never know. And it's probably useless to guess. But we just can't help but wonder how it all would have played out differently. We're back from the holidays and still bitter, in other words ...

*Favre runs for 10 yards, Ryan Longwell splits the uprights with a 47-yard field field goal, and the Vikings go to the Super Bowl.

*The Vikings defeat the Colts, and Favre retires after the game. There is nothing left to prove. The season has been perfect. It can't get any better.

*Minnesota moves on at the QB position, establishing a short-term and long-term plan for success at the position. The offseason drama involving Favre does not exist. Football is the only focus.

*Fans, instead of being antsy and angst-ridden, head into 2010 in full grace period mode. Anything that happens this year is just gravy. Same goes for 2011 and probably 2012. Sure, fans still want to see victories. But those memories of 2009 are strong.

*There is no way Brad Childress is fired, even if he would have started 3-7.

*The Favre texting scandal is a footnote instead of front page news.

*And in the 11th game of the season, the defining play isn't a 41-year-old QB rumbling for 10 yards to provide a signature moment during the new head coach's first game in the midst of a lost year.


If you would rather not wallow, please consider this an open forum to discuss anything that happened in the past few days. That includes: The Gophers defeating Iowa to take home Floyd of Rosedale; the Twins getting the winning bid for Japanese speedster and batting champ Tsuyoshi Nishioka; and any other more pleasant subject.

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