Sunday wasn't just the day the Vikings blew a game to the Dolphins, wasn't just the day the Purple fell to 0-2 and started looking at the Detroit Lions the way failing CEOs look at stimulus money.

For the Vikings, Sunday was also VJ Day.

The day they realized how much they need Vincent Jackson.

Let me play Match.com for the needy parties.

Jackson is the tall, fast, productive receiver who refuses to play for the Chargers. Brett Favre is the quarterback seeking a tall, fast, productive receiver in this, his supposed last season.

Jackson wants money. The Vikings owner spends like he's allergic to presidents.

The Chargers want draft picks. The Vikings have wasted more than a few lately on the likes of Tyrell Johnson and Sage Rosenfels -- why not throw one at San Diego?

Jackson wants to be loved. Favre is on the rebound from his fling with Sidney Rice.

Set the table with roses, light a few candles, and let's get these people together.

Sunday, Jackson should have fired his agent and replaced him with Bernard Berrian. No one has ever done more for Jackson's earning potential than Berrian did in the Vikings' 14-10 loss to Miami at Mall of America Field at the Metrodome.

With Rice expected to miss half the season because of a hip injury, Berrian, who signed a $42 million contract to be the Vikings' No. 1 receiver three years ago, needed to ease the pain of Rice's loss. Instead, he rubbed Ben-Gay on a blister.

In nine home games in 2009, Favre was intercepted twice. Sunday, in five passes toward Berrian, Favre was intercepted twice.

Berrian finished with two catches for 24 yards for an offense that has managed 19 points in eight quarters.

Berrian fumbled a punt. He neglected to fight for the ball. After one interception, he turned to argue with an official instead of tackling cornerback Jason Allen, who got up with the ball and started running the other way.

Berrian is to tenaciousness what Joe Mauer is to loquaciousness.

He's filling Rice's shoes the way Prince would fill Pat Williams' jersey.

Favre was asked whether he's getting enough effort out of Berrian.

"I believe so," Favre said. "I'll watch the film tomorrow, but I think Bernard's heart's in the right place. In my mind, I believe he did all he could do. If I felt otherwise I wouldn't throw it to him.

"We go to bat with who we've got, me included, and that's the way it is. I'm not going to look out to my left, look out to my right, and say I'm not throwing it out there. I'm not going to play that way.''

He might want to start. Without Rice, his two best receivers might be tight end Visanthe Shiancoe and running back Adrian Peterson.

Percy Harvin looks rusty and bruised. Greg Lewis looks older than Favre. Greg Camarillo has yet to justify the trade that sent Benny Sapp to Miami.

Knowing what we know now, Rice might have been the NFL MVP in 2009. The Vikings look lost without him.

"You can't replace a 6-5 guy," Harvin said of Rice.

Unless you can find another 6-5 guy. Like ... Jackson.

The Vikings are expected to make an offer for Jackson in the next few days. With a legitimate No. 1 receiver who can stretch defenses and make plays in traffic, Favre could quickly regain form.

Peterson is relentless. Shiancoe is headed to the Pro Bowl. Naufahu Tahi will get you an inch almost every time you need one. And Favre hasn't looked ineffective so much as lonely.

"You take Sidney out of it, and Chester [Taylor], and Percy's injured, and had been out ..." Favre said. "That's not to disrespect anyone else on our team. We jelled rather quickly last year."

To paraphrase Yogi Berra, it got late early this year. The Vikings are 0-2; already have lost one more home game than they did last year; and after the bye, they will face the Jets, Cowboys, Packers and Patriots.

They can't wait for Rice to return. They need help now.

If they were able to acquire Jackson, by the end of this season they might have the best receiving corps in the NFL, along with a future Hall of Fame quarterback and running back.

Jackson and Rice split wide, Harvin in the slot, Shiancoe working the middle, Peterson arcing out of the backfield ... that offense might be more talented than the one that came within one pass of the Super Bowl last year.

"It's not for me to decide," Favre said, in another futile attempt to convince us that he doesn't run the organization. "I've heard the talk just like everyone else. You know as much as I know. But we've got to play Detroit this week and all I know is we have to get better. The guys in this room."

The best way to get better is to add a guy to the room. A 6-5 guy. A guy who, unlike Berrian, might hunger for a chance to play with a legend; might hunger for the ball.

Jim Souhan can be heard Sundays from 10 a.m. to noon and weekdays at 2:40 p.m. on 1500ESPN. His Twitter name is Souhanstrib. • jsouhan@startribune.com