I’m trying to rack my head, but I can’t think right now. So I’m asking the reliable interwebs, what is a phrase that means mission impossible. Insert word or phrase into blank;

“The Vikings are ____ themselves in a ___ to try to trade the bulk of Kirk Cousins contract.”

Is there a single word for 'mission impossible' that would fill the blank?

  • You may want to edit and finish off your sentence so we know more about what you really want. But there are probably lots of ways of saying this depending on the situation (you'd have to add more to give us the context; we don't know who these Vikings or Mongols are).
    – Mitch
    Feb 15, 2019 at 14:58
  • 2
    Why do you have two blank spaces? Are you suggesting that you want to put the identical phrase into both? If not, only provide a single blank space. Feb 15, 2019 at 19:02
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    tying themselves in a knot?
    – Xanne
    Aug 15, 2019 at 0:31
  • Obviously, it would be an "IM task".
    – Hot Licks
    Aug 18, 2019 at 18:58
  • 1
    Oh, C'mon! Even I know who the Vikings and Kirk Cousins are, and what ball they kick, pass and fumble. The OP has a right to assume minimal cultural literacy of the users here. I am not sure why an attempt to trade his contract is a fool's errand (not exactly the right phrase), but oh, gosh! Close it on the grounds of no research, if you must, but not on the grounds of "unclear what you are asking".
    – ab2
    Aug 18, 2019 at 20:38

4 Answers 4


If you

paint yourself into a corner

you have made things very difficult or impossible to get out of.

The Vikings have painted themselves into a corner to try to trade the bulk of Kirk Cousins contract.


You are already verging on something very near to the same meaning. Though it looks like you might have a noun in mind, the use of the phrase/idiom "near to impossible" (verb) or "near-to-impossible" (noun) as a descriptor would fit perfectly.

“The Vikings are engaging themselves in a near-to-impossible task/try/attempt to trade the bulk of Kirk Cousins contract.”

Otherwise, since your question is tagged as a single-word-request, you might use "hopelessness" just as well.

“The Vikings are fooling themselves with the hopelessness of trying to trade the bulk of Kirk Cousins contract.”




How about "The Vikings are engaged themselves in a futile attempt to try to trade the bulk of Kirk Cousins contract." It would work if "themselves" is emphasized.


What you seek is a hollow pursuit. "The Vikings are bogged down in the empty pursuit of trying to trade the bulk of Kirk Cousins contract.” All sorts of examples abound on the net.

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