Jim Souhan analyzes the local sports scene and advises you to never take his betting advice. He likes old guitars and old music, never eats press box hot dogs, and can be heard on 1500ESPN at 2:05 p.m. weekdays, and Sundays from 10 a.m.-noon.

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Vikes lose opener

Posted by: Jim Souhan under Professional baseball, Ron Gardenhire, Twins management, Twins offense, Vikings, Football on TV, Packers, Vikings coaches, Vikings offense, Adrian Peterson, Brett Favre, Vikings road games Updated: September 10, 2010 - 12:49 AM

That was one lousy football game.

The Saints and the Vikings both missed on plays they would have hit last January. Maybe teams need more preseason games, not fewer.

I thought Brett Favre was the difference in the game. He played lousy, and the Vikings lost while scoring nine points. If he had played well, the Vikings would have won.

The Saints weren't very good. Drew Brees missed on a couple of big plays, his receivers dropped a couple of passes, and Sean Payton didn't start running the ball until the second half. The Saints are a much better team when defenses have to worry about the run.

Although Favre and his receivers stunk it up, this isn't doomsday. I figured the Vikings would lose this game, anyway. If Favre gets on the same page as his receivers, the Vikings should win their next two games and head to New York at 2-1. To me, the key part of the schedule is the Cowboys-Packers-Patriots stretch.

-Best moment of the night was Drew Brees, right before the opening kickoff, running to the 20-yard-line, waving to the crowd, and pumping his fist. The crowd responded, in unison, with the ``Who Dat'' chant. Amazing.

-The Twins will win the division, and I believe Ron Gardenhire is the manager of the year. He thought he had three All-Stars, and he wound up with only one - Joe Mauer. Joe Nathan blew out his elbow, meaning Gardenhire had to patch a bullpen together all year.

Delmon Young blossomed under Gardenhire. Gardenhire stuck with Jesse Crain when most of us would have shipped him out, and Crain became one of the best relievers in the league over the last four months. Gardenhire lost Justin Morneau, and yet his team played its best baseball without the former MVP. Gardenhire successfully broke in Danny Valencia during a pennant race. I think this is his best work, and he had a tougher job than Ron Washington, who got to dominate a bad division.

-Adrian Peterson ran with great intensity Thursday. The Vikings should have kept giving him the ball in the second half. He was wearing down the Saints. I wish we really knew how many times Favre checked from a run to a pass.

-Judd, Chip and I shot a video for startribune.com. I'll be on 1500ESPN at 2:40 Friday.



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