Fans all around the country look forward to the release of the NFL schedule. This year, Minnesota fans probably don’t care very much. Sure, the NFL released the schedule for all 32 teams. Yes, there are specials on both ESPN and the NFL Network discussing the match-ups and potential dramas that could unfold during the 2012 season. But for Viking fans it’s not about the 32 teams, it’s about a vote that they lost 6-9 in a Minnesota House Panel late Monday night. It’s a vote that would have moved the stadium bill forward and made it possible to pass before the State Legislature adjourns in two weeks. That vote might be remembered as the vote that killed the NFL in Minnesota.
Viking’s officials were clearly stunned by this outcome. Owner Zygi Wilf has had his front office working on this stadium project for the past seven years. The team has continually compromised on stadium type, location, and revenue sources to fund the project. Wilf has maintained from day one that he has no desire to move the team. Minnesota politicians may have left him no choice. Some of the Representatives on the panel were clearly acting in what they thought were their best political interests, not necessarily the interests of the city of Minneapolis, the state of Minnesota, and certainly not considering all that the team was putting forward. There was even a point where the Vikings were told that it was a question of whether or not it was a “good deal” for the state, and that didn’t mean in comparison to other similar deals in different places, but in fact they didn’t want to team to have a financial windfall by getting a new stadium. That sounds suspiciously like envy.
In reality, politicians have backed the Vikings into a corner and left them very few options. Five years from now, the Los Angeles Vikings will be releasing their schedule and then, maybe some of these same politicians will be campaigning for a new NFL franchise because the beloved Vikes left their great state for greener pastures. Good luck.
About the Author
Written by Sean Eckhardt
Univ of Alabama alumni. Born and raised outside Chicago, IL. Currently live in Florida. Some of my favorite teams include the Chicago Cubs, Minnesota Vikings, Miami Heat, and the Florida Panthers. My interests outside of sports include music, outdoor activities, and anything with a motor(cars, bikes, boats, etc...).