Is it better to have won then lost, than never to have won at all? Vikings fans must be wrestling with this notion. Had the Vikings not pulled off the Minneapolis Miracle, a moment that will be seared in sports history and Vikings lore, they never would have made it to the NFC Championship Game in the first place. So, there was sweetness in battle. But did that leave them more bitter after Sunday's 38-7 loss to the Eagles? Perhaps. But nothing will exasperate the franchise and fanbase more than the cumulative misery of the last six NFC title game exits.
Jan. 21, 2018: They all hurt, but this one is raw, the Vikings falling 38-7 in humiliating fashion to the Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Two first-half turnovers put the Vikings behind 24-7 at halftime and from there, it only got worse.
Jan. 24, 2010: Saints 31, Vikings 28 (OT): If having 12 men in the huddle wasn't enough of a drive-killer, the Vikings' were undone by Brett Favre's interception with 19 seconds left. Five of the Vikings' final seven drives ended with a turnover.
Jan. 14, 2001: Giants 41, Vikings 0: The box score looks like something out of a horror movie: Daunte Culpepper passed for 78 yards, threw three interceptions and was sacked four times. The Vikings drives ended with two fumbles, three picks and six punts. It was over from the moment the coin flipped.
Jan. 17, 1999: Falcons 30, Vikings 27 (OT): Widely regarded as the best Vikings team to have not won the Super Bowl, Minnesota's hopes were doused when Gary Anderson, who'd not missed a field goal all season, sailed one in wide left to give the Falcons a shot to push the game into overtime. Atlanta took full advantage of that, then put Minnesota away with Morten Andersen's field goal in the extra period.
Jan. 17, 1988: Redskins 17, Vikings 10: Only six yards separated the Vikings from the Washington end zone and it appeared a fourth-down pass to Darrin Nelson with 1:06 left would be good enough to tie the game and send it into overtime. Quarterback Wade Wilson found Nelson, but Washington cornerback Darrell Green immediately knocked the ball loose, securing the win for the Redskins.
Jan. 1, 1978: Cowboys 23, Vikings 6: NFC Championship Games had been good to the Vikings up until this point. Entering the contest without an injured Fran Tarkenton (broken leg, thumb injury), Minnesota's offense sputtered with Bob Lee and committed four turnovers. Their only scores came on two first-half field goals.