Thursday, June 29, 2017

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Vikings Territory

Hey! It is Vikings Territory‘s birthday! Which birthday exactly?

We’re Five!

That’s right, folks. After about a five minute strategy session via Skype, and about three dollars worth of investment, and about three minutes worth of preparation, Brett Anderson and I flipped on the switch (actually, it was just him, he doesn’t let me touch the switches) that turned the lights on here at VT half a decade ago.

It has been a wild ride, with plenty of successes and failures along the way, but we are both proud of what we have created here… and where it is headed.

We started off celebrating the rare times when literally dozens of people were on the site at once. And now, today, we are privileged enough to celebrate the days when tens of thousands of people have graced us with their presence in a single day.

There have been a lot of things that we’ve accomplished, ones we could go on for hours about with pride and excitement, but this post was created with something more important in mind than patting ourselves on the back.

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Vikings Place Kalil on Injured Reserve, Sign RB Ronnie Hillman
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The loss of Adrian Peterson was supposed to be the biggest news out of Winter Park today, but when Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer took the podium this morning, everything changed.

Zimmer quickly addressed Peterson’s surgery, then announced the team had placed left tackle Matt Kalil on Injured Reserve. According to Andrew Krammer, Kalil’s hip injury has been an issue since the preseason. The injury appears to be season-ending, forcing T.J. Clemmings into the starting role at left tackle.

Last season, Clemmings started every game at right tackle for the Vikings and struggled in his rookie season. There’s plenty of room for improvement when Clemmings makes the switch, as Kalil was Pro Football Focus’s 65th-ranked offensive tackle this season.

Later in the press conference, Zimmer announced a few changes in the backfield. He named Jerick McKinnon the starter for Sunday’s game against the Carolina Panthers and announced the team’s signing of free agent running back Ronnie Hillman.

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Adrian Peterson to undergo surgery
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Less than a month after losing Teddy Bridgewater for the season, the Minnesota Vikings were dealt another staggering blow to their backfield. According to reports from ESPN’s Josina Anderson, running back Adrian Peterson will undergo surgery this Thursday to repair his torn meniscus.

Peterson suffered the injury in Sunday’s win over the Green Bay Packers, though a timetable wasn’t set for his return. Anderson, who broke the news on Twitter, reports Peterson’s “bucket handle tear” requires a minimum of three months and maximum of six months recovery time. If that’s indeed the case, Peterson may have played his last snap for the Vikings in 2016 and beyond.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The debut of the new $1.1 billion U.S. Bank Stadium was positively majestic Sunday night. However, it was Sam Bradford’s debut as the Vikings’ starting quarterback that stole the show.

Bradford threw for two touchdowns and the reigning NFC North Champs harassed Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers enough to claim a thrilling 17-14 victory and remain on top of the division.

With Bradford under center, the Vikings’ red zone efficiency also took a step in the right direction.

The Vikings ran four plays in the red zone (four pass and 0 runs) on one possession and scored one touchdown. Bradford was 4-for-4 in the red zone. The Packers had eight offensive snaps in the red zone (four pass and four runs) on three possessions, scoring two touchdowns.

Red Zone Notes:

Thanks to a blocked punt and a pass interference penalty by Terrence Newman, the Packers reached the red zone first. With no score in the game and just under six minutes to play in the first quarter, the Packers knocked on the door with a 1st-and-goal from the four yard line.

The Vikings’ run defense rose to the occasion, holding Eddie Lacy in check on his first two red zone rushing attempts. However, a well designed play action pass on third down fooled Trae Waynes as Jordy Nelson escaped in the flat for an easy touchdown.

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