Before the Minneapolis Miracle, there was the Skol Troll.
Vikings fans bear little ill will toward most New Orleans Saints, circa 2018. Drew Brees seems a decent enough fellow, and the poor, permanently meme-fied Marcus Williams has handled his embarassing role in the last play with uncommon grace.
Sean Payton is another story. This, every Vikings fan recalls, is a head coach who knew about (and tried covering up) his team's cash-for-injuries bounty system, which targed then-Vikings quarterback Brett Favre, among others. When finally caught, Payton admitted culpability, and apologized... to Saints owner Tom Benson.
Shed no tears for Sean, then, as you view photographic evidence that the Saints coach taunted Vikings fans in the closing moments of Sunday's remarkable divisional playoff game. After New Orleans kicked a field goal to take a 24-23 lead with 25 seconds left, Payton decided to give Minnesota fans something to remember him by.
These photos, which look as if they were taken from the New Orleans sideline, were posted to a Vikings fan page last night. Unless they're photoshopped, wildly out of context, or Sean Payton has the world's weirdest tic, this is Sean Payton doing the Vikings' "Skol!" chant, and directing it at the U.S. Bank Stadium fans behind his bench.
Payton had statistical basis for his optimism: The Saints had an 85 percent chance of winning after that late field goal, a figure that went up with each successive Minnesota play.
But there is no science behind being an asshole. And sometimes people get just what they deserve.
By the way, Sean? The "Skol" Chant isn't something you do at someone, like the chicken dances on "Arrested Development." You do it with them.
Perhaps by now you've seen it done properly. Does this look familiar?