Coach Dennis Green was describing the Vikings offense a few years back and started by saying, "Daunte drives the car."
On Monday, Green's successor, Mike Tice, nudged his quarterback, Daunte Culpepper, off the curb and sent him sprawling under a speeding Lincoln Town Car.
The locals reacting to Sunday's 37-8 embarrassment in Cincinnati seemed equally divided Monday on these potential solutions:
A) Fire Tice.
B) Send a package of Culpepper, Kevin Williams, Bryant McKinnie and a couple of first-rounders to Miami to regain the all-time great, Gus Frerotte, to trigger this dormant Purple Machine.
Tice talked in the sideways manner familiar with coaches in his Monday media session, but the location where he placed the blame for the season's second loss could not have been more clear: Culpepper's lap.
One week earlier, Tice conceded to an intense pass rush by Tampa Bay and offered absolution to Culpepper for a five-turnover (three interceptions, two fumbles) effort in the 24-13 loss.
The head coach also said then that he and his crack staff would go to work on these protection issues. On Monday, Tice could not have been more pleased with the results of last week's Winter Park pass blocking seminar, saying the protection against Cincinnati was "better than solid."
As for the theory Randy Moss' absence has led to difficult defensive packages, Tice harrumphed and said: "They played three coverages yesterday."
Protection, solid-plus. Defensive packages, plain vanilla.
This left Culpepper's failure to read the coverages and find receivers as the lone available reason for his five interceptions.
The coach wasn't even willing to take a swipe at his defense, which gave up 504 yards, 26 first downs and 37 points.
"It probably looked like we played horribly on defense, but I look at the third-to-last play, and we had five guys in on the tackle," Tice said. "The effort was there.
"We continue to work first and foremost on turnovers. It's very tough defensively, when your opponent starts on the average at the 45-yard line. We're lucky we gave up 37.
"Turnovers is the No. 1 thing ... not having to have our defense play 20 minutes of football in the first half."
What Tice was saying to the media was: What don't you understand, people? This whipping was based on turnovers, and Culpepper had five of the seven, for no reason other than a Sunday of incompetence.
And then Tice painted the blame-Daunte picture more completely, saying:
"We have to play within ourselves and not try to make things happen. You try to make things happen, it tends to snowball and make things worse.
"Stay within the scheme, go down the list, ba-boom, ba-boom, and that takes cares of the rhythm with the passing game."
There's one player on the field charged with staying in the scheme, going down the list, ba-boom, ba-boom, and that's the quarterback.
Watch out, Daunte. There's a Lincoln Town Car headed at you, and the driver has a pencil on his ear. Pick yourself up this week, or the ba-booms will be another ka-boom.
"I have to get back to playing within myself and doing what I love to do ... make plays," Culpepper said.
Four of the interceptions came in the second half. He was asked if he made some throws he knew "weren't the smartest" because the Vikings entered that half down 27-0.
"Yeah, that was in my mind a few times -- especially that last interception in the end zone," Culpepper said. "... In the situation we're in, I'm saying, 'I want to get seven.' I was still trying to win the game."
All these turnovers, Daunte -- three fewer interceptions (eight) in two games than you had in 16 last season. What's the deal?
"It shows that I'm not perfect," he said.
Your coach made that clear to everyone listening Monday -- and, really, it didn't take a talent for reading between the lines to get Tice's message.
The anti-Daunte crowd has returned with a ferocity unheard since the "We want Gus" campaign of 2003.
There was only one downer on Monday for the Culpepper critics: They had an ally in Tice and, right now, the Purple hardcores are reluctant to be on the same side of any issue with this head coach.