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Chris Richardson
National Blogger

Chris Richardson

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Futile foursome


This was supposed to be the year. On one side, you had a team prepping to perhaps play the Super Bowl in their own stadium, and on the other, there were hopes the interloper could exceed last year's NFC Conference Championship, while hopefully avoiding ending its season with yet another interception.

These were the hopes and dreams of Dallas Cowboys fans and Minnesota Vikings, respectively -- 2010 was going to be the year. Fast-forward to the middle of season, and those pie-in-the-sky thoughts have been relegated to the "not so much" category. A quick glance at both the Dallas Morning News and the Star Tribune reveals just how far each team fell short.

Headlines like "Spoiler role tough to accept for team with as much history as Cowboys" and simply "The End" indicate just how far off the tracks each team's season went, but which season was more disappointing? Does the dashing of Dallas' Super Bowl dreams outdo the failure in Minnesota?

While we could debate each side vigorously for hours, it's doubtful a consensus would be reached. Between standard hatred of the Cowboys and the disdain for the act of Brett Favre, there really isn't a clear-cut winner, er, loser here. Considering the national popularity of the Cowboys, it's easy to say they were the winner/loser here, but then again, when the Vikings secured Favre's return, there were dreams of touchdowns to Sidney Rice mixed with the explosive rushing from Adrian Peterson, and a defense that got after the quarterback.

None of that happened.

From Brad Childress' inability to use perhaps the best running back in the NFL to Sidney Rice injuries; and from Dallas' perspective, horrible losses to Washington and Chicago to start the season, all the way to Tony Romo's cracked clavicle, the 2010 season for both teams became an abject disaster, resulting in both head coaches being fired.

However, with the promotion of Jason Garrett, the Cowboys have been improving, er, playing up to their potential -- finally -- and have won their last two games, one of which was against the then-division-leading New York Giants.

Meanwhile, in Minnesota, the wheels have come off completely. The Vikings were embarrassed by the Green Bay Packers in what might have been Favre's last game at Lambeau Field. In fact, since their Week 4 bye, the Vikings have gone a paltry 2-5, pretty much securing them the "most disappointing team" title, but perhaps there's something being overlooked: The Cincinnati Bengals.

A fan's perspective: "Oh, look! They've got T.O. They've got more receivers for Carson Palmer to throw to! Their draft was pretty decent and it looks like they've got a chance to show the world last season's 10-6 record wasn't a fluke!!!!"

Fast-forward to Week 12, with the Bengals coming off a crushing defeat at the hands of the previously-defeated (as opposed to "undefeated") Buffalo Bills, and it's clear Cincinnati also has a dog in this fight.

Perhaps the best way to decide this "most disappointing" title is to have a worst-team-in-the-league Super Bowl that runs concurrently to the winner's bracket playoffs. Put the Cowboys, the Vikings, the Bengals and the Bills in Futile Four and let the winner be crowned as the league's most disappointing.

Actually, considering the format, the team that lost first in the Futile Four should take the crown. The winning team could be rewarded in draft picks or some such.

I'd watch, and it's doubtful I'd be the only one.

By Chris Richardson  |  November 23, 2010; 1:04 PM ET  | Category:  Brett Favre , Coaching , Dallas Cowboys , Minnesota Vikings , NFC Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: High hopes, blunted expectations | Next: Yesterday's news


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you forgot to include the ten.titans in your loser category.i guess we could"ve anticipated this when they decided to picked up mr moss.

Posted by: smozzley | November 23, 2010 2:19 PM

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