The St. Louis Rams had the No. 1 offense in the league, along with the No. 1 passing game, much like Minnesota had a year ago when the Vikings were taken down by the Falcons. The Rams also have the sixth-best defense, the only defense in the NFC that did not allow a 100-yard rusher this season.
But they have coach Dick Vermeil in charge, and although many consider him the coach of the year, playoff history says he will get tighter and tighter and tighter with each passing day, and that might rub off on his playoff inexperienced team.
Minnesota Coach Dennis Green knows better than to tell anyone that his team is going to win a playoff game, and no one is going to suggest anything differently when noting the Viking defense ranked No. 27. But Vermeil gets tighter, and tighter and tighter....
After Minnesota defeated the Cowboys, wide receiver Randy Moss spoke to a TV crew from Germany. Moss looked into the camera and said, ''You all take it easy. The Vikings are going all the way.''
Moss then caught himself -- what would you expect, he's a receiver.
He realized a group of American-pounce-on-any-kind-of-guarantee reporters was nearby, and he quickly pointed out that he was not predicting the Vikings were going all the way to the Super Bowl.
''It was just a figure of speech,'' he said, defusing a story that might have rocked the world: ''Moss predicts his own team will go to the Super Bowl.''
That's what happens when someone in sports, who practices all week to win, comes out and says he's going to win. It's scandalous.
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