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Archive for NFC North

A Rivalry Redesign

< by Nate >

Growing up in the state of Wisconsin, there is no shortage of rivalries. From Wisconsin-Minnesota college athletics — the oldest rivalry in college football — to Packers-Bears — the oldest rivalry in the NFL — there is a lot of history in the Dairy State.

But for a young boy who grew up during the 1990s, during the resurgence of Green Bay football, no rivalry was bigger than Packers-Vikings.

We were good and they were good, and that created some heated altercations. The top two teams in the NFC Central — later changed to the NFC North — always knew how to bring out the best, and worse, in each other. Growing up hating the likes of John Randall and Chris Carter later turned to despising Randy Moss and Daunte Culpepper.

When the Vikings lost to the Atlanta Falcons on a missed field goal in the 1999 NFC Championship, my dad and I jumped up and down in our living room. Last season when the Vikings won three games, while my Pack put up 15, I maniacally strummed my fingers together.

With the good, however, comes the bad: Randy Moss tearing up Green Bay’s secondary on more than a handful of occasions, being beaten like a drum by Minnesota in the 2005 Wild Card round, watching Randy Moss score a touchdown at Lambeau Field, turn and pretend to moon the jeering crowd.

For a long time, my heart was cold and hard when it came to anything Minnesota.

Over the years, that heart has, however, softened. To the point where, this Fall, I purchased a Percy Harvin jersey for a loved one … my fiancée.

She takes a good amount of crap from my family, and I from hers. And while it is still a heated rivalry on the field, I’ve learned that not all Vikings/Viqueens are that bad.

After all, I am marrying one.