Saturday, April 18, 2015
Blog Page 11

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Which Defensive Player will Have the Most Standout Season for the Vikings in 2015?

Andy: Sharrif Floyd 
He won’t standout the most on the stat sheet, but I think he’s in line for a very productive junior season for the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings. We’ve seen flashes of brilliance his first two campaigns, but I think 2015 is where he’ll consistently become that disruptive force of nature that Mike Zimmer can hang his hat on in the middle.

Brent: Harrison Smith
Smith is coming off an excellent 2014 in which he was the 2nd-ranked safety by PFF standards. His versatility is important to Zimmer’s defense, and I think they’ll get even more creative with how they use Smith in 2015. Not only does Smith move around a lot, he’s also the last line of defense over the top of the secondary. Trusting Smith to be right deep down field allows the Vikings to be aggressive with their front seven. There are plenty of arguments for Anthony Barr and Everson Griffen—hell, throw Xavier Rhodes’ name into the ring as well. At the end of the day, I think Smith’s involvement in stopping both the run and pass gives him the most opportunity to make plays and have an impact.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Put yourself in Rick Spielman’s shoes for a minute.

Your franchise is building one of the league’s best stadiums, you’ve drafted a potential long-term quarterback in Teddy Bridgewater, and a playoff berth seems like a realistic goal in 2015. Optimism around the Vikings is higher than it has been in recent years — thanks for the memories, Christian — but a dark cloud hangs over Minnesota.

The storm has been brewing for months, bringing with it vicious rumors, allegations, and speculation. It’s cast its shadow over your team’s bright future, and the nasty weather doesn’t appear to be clearing anytime soon.

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Image courtesy of vikings.com

1500 ESPN is reporting that former Bengals corner back Terence Newman has agreed to join the Vikings on a 1 year contact.

Newman, 36, has connections with Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer and last played for him in 2013.

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The Minnesota Vikings announced that they have agreed to terms with former Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Casey Matthews.

Matthews was drafted in the fourth round of the 2011 NFL draft and was forced into action last season when the Eagles were hit with injuries at the Inside linebacker position. Casey Matthews (brother of Packers All-Pro linebacker Clay Matthews), has been a bit of a disappointment in Philly, but is eager for a fresh start in Minnesota.

Matthews has played inside and outside linebacker during his four seasons with the Eagles, registering 109 tackles and 2.5 sacks on defense to go along with his 39 additional stops on special teams. The former Oregon Ducks linebacker has appeared in 64 games in his NFL career.

Matthew is only 26 and started 11 games last season for the Eagles splitting time with Emmanuel Acho.

Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer met Matthews at the Senior Bowl in 2011 when Zimmer was a defensive coach for Matthews’ North squad.

That familiarity is reassuring, and I think having extra depth at the linebacker position is certainly welcomed. My fingers are crossed that Zimmer has the know how to turn Matthews’ NFL fortunes around in Minnesota. However, my eyes are still on some of the talented edge rushers and linebackers in this years draft.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Former Viking left tackle Todd Steussie joined the show to talk about life, football, and his latest venture into the analytics business. We chatted about memories of the 98 Vikings, stories of the late-great Kory Stringer, his thoughts on Adrian Peterson, and the value of players educating themselves for their inevitable post-football career.

Steussie — a 14-year NFL veteran who spent the bulk of his career with the Minnesota Vikings and also the Panthers, Buccaneers, and Rams — was the 19th overall pick of the 1994 Draft and went on to become a two-time Pro Bowler (1997, 1998) and started Super Bowl XXXVIII for the Panthers.

Since retiring from the game, Steussie has become the co-founder & Executive Vice-President of PotentiaMetrics as well as President of PotentiaPro, a developer of next-gen NFL outcomes and information systems. Bringing a “Moneyball” approach to pro football like has already become widely accepted by franchises in the NBA and MLB.

Their free app ScoutSight is a powerful comparative analytics tool designed to bring high level stats & insight to the everyday fan (for free!) and will be available by the NFL Draft.

 

Interview Links
• Todd’s Twitter (@ToddSteussie)
PotentiaMetrics
PotentiaPro
PotentiaPro on Facebook
The ScoutSight App – Launching mid-April

An Andy Carlson joint.

 

 

Listen to the Episode Below (40:57)


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