Minnesota Vultures: Vikings pilfer another Packer
By Tommy Powers, St Paul Pioneer Press
~Oh man, Packer fans are taking this hard. Twitter is a cesspool of bad language and foul imagery.
Vikings fans certainly didn’t demonstrate such uncouth behavior when the Packers signed away Koren Robinson in 2006. Instead, they stayed classy. Hey, just because the Vikings had released Robinson after a high-speed car chase in Mankato, it didn’t mean they might not have signed him back.
But now all the Packer backers are going screwy, as if Greg Jennings were Brett Favre or something.
Besides, I’m not even sure if the Packers can blame Jennings for defecting. By all accounts, the Vikings locked him up at Winter Park and wouldn’t release him until he agreed to a deal. That was a smart strategy because, as any car salesman knows, once you let a guy get off the lot, he’s pretty much gone for good.
The signing was an excellent one for the Vikings because it brings their total number of capable receivers up to, well, one. But you have to start somewhere. And the Vikings are almost back to even after getting rid of Percy Harvin. If they can use their draft choices to come up another good wideout, they will be ahead of the game.
Jennings, meanwhile, said it came down to either the Vikings or Packers before adding that the Vikings really “stepped up to the plate.” Then, intentionally or not, he sort of tweaked the Packers several times. Just little things such as going on about how the Vikings have a window of opportunity that is opening instead of closing.
And there was none of the usual remorse that comes with ending a long relationship. Not even the fake kind. There was none of that “I’ll always be a Packer” stuff or anything like that. It was as if he were shaking the dust from the bottom of his shoes. I’m not sure what was going on there, but Jennings seemed gleeful to get away and start fresh.
Maybe the window really is closing in Green Bay. But I’m not going to speculate because those poor folks are riled up enough. Clearly, this is tantamount to treason as far as they are concerned. So I’m not going to poke the bear with a stick.
This is a bigger splash than we thought the Vikings would make. Spielman and his crew have proved to be adept at drafting players but spotty at signing free agents. In fact, there were a few miserable signings last year. However, it’s hard to see where this one could go wrong. If Jennings is healthy, and I’m sure he had to pass a physical, there doesn’t appear to be much downside.
Some might say Jennings isn’t quite what he once was, even though he’s just 29. But it’s all relative. He’s 10 times better than anything the Vikings have right now. So they’ve addressed their most vulnerable position. Christian Ponder — and maybe Matt Cassel before it’s all said and done — now has a capable wide receiver.
Jennings already had his “we” and “them” down properly as of Friday night. Whatever they gave him to drink while locked up at Winter Park, he no longer thinks like a Packer. And he sounded as if he were looking forward to the two teams colliding.
“I’m not the first Packer player to jump on this side,” he said, no doubt referring to former kicker Ryan Longwell. Or maybe he was referring to the elderly quarterback. Anyway, it wasn’t clear.
The bottom line is that this was a good day for all those who root for the Vikings and an equally good day for all those who root against the Packers. In other words, Vikings fans hit the daily double.
Let’s see, Favre, Longwell, Jennings. … The Vikings are almost even for that Koren Robinson signing. But on the off chance that Jennings doesn’t work out, when does that young Randall Cobb become available so he can get over here?
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