This past summer, one of the hot Vikings related topics was associated with trying to figure out what former player was asked to work with Minnesota wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson in the offseason. The Vikings coaches felt their young receiver could benefit from working out with an experienced former professional player.
Minnesota fans and media spent a decent amount of time trying to figure out who the player was, but no definitive answer could be found. At least until earlier this morning.
Former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Michael Irvin revealed today on the NFL Network pre-game show GameDay Morning that he was indeed the former player that Vikings coaches had asked to work with Patterson. It was known that Patterson passed on the opportunity, but now we know that he said no thanks to working with a Hall of Famer.
When asked about Irvin’s comment, Patterson had nothing to say.
When I asked Cordarrelle Patterson after the game about Michael Irvin saying he was asked to be his mentor, he said nothing and walked away
— Chris Tomasson (@christomasson) November 29, 2015
Was it the best decision by Patterson to turn down help from Irvin? Based on his performance this season, that answer is likely “no.”
The 24 year old receiver has only two catches for 10 yards this season and has had no role in Minnesota’s offense. The majority of his production has come on kick returns where he is averaging just over 29 yards on 22 returns, including one for a touchdown against the Oakland Raiders in Week 10.
The Vikings are in dire need of more production from not only Patterson, but the rest of the receivers on their roster, as well. Before the start of Sunday’s game against the Atlanta Falcons, Minnesota’s passing offense was tied for 30th in the NFL in terms of passing yards per game. The lack of production from the team’s wide receivers has definitely hurt the offense’s ability to move the ball down the field.
In Sunday’s win over the Falcons, Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater threw 20 completions and only 30 percent of those throws were to wide receivers. In comparison, Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan completed 22 passes and 72 percent of those balls were thrown to Falcons wide receivers.
In Minnesota’s last four games, their receivers have only caught 36 percent (26) of the 72 completions thrown by Bridgewater. Rookie wide receiver Stefon Diggs has caught 58 percent of those 26 passes, but he cannot do it by himself.
If the Vikings want to be a legitimate contender for the remainder of the season, they need their receivers to step up their play in a big way. There are currently no Michael Irvins on this roster, but there are plenty of receivers capable of making plays who do not have the last name Diggs.