We’ve said it before. And we’ll say it again.
Actually, we’ll say it right now.
The Vikings need to cure running back Adrian Peterson’s recklessness with the football or it will kill them in the playoffs.
It possibly already has.
By losing an overtime heartbreaker against the Bears, the Vikings have blown a shot at the top seed in the NFC playoffs. And now they also will need to sweat out next Sunday’s game between the Eagles and the Cowboys in order to find out whether they’ll have to play a game in the wild-card round.
The path is simple. The Vikings need to beat the Giants and the Cowboys need to beat the Eagles. If the Vikings lose, then the Eagles, Cardinals, or Cowboys will earn the bye week.
The decisive fumble came when Peterson had the ball punched out by Bears linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer while fighting for more yardage and not properly protecting the ball.
On the next play, Bears quarterback Jay Cutler floated a 39-yard pass to a wide-open Devin Aromashodu, hitting him in stride to end the game.
And, quite possibly, ending the Vikings’ chances at making it back to the Super Bowl after a 33-year hiatus.