In this weekly series of articles, I’ll be breaking down what went RIGHT or what went WRONG for the Minnesota Vikings. This week, given their embarrassing loss to San Francisco, I’ll be focusing on the negatives and what the Vikings need to correct moving forward.
Watch the tape, fix your mistakes, and move forward. In the NFL, there’s no time to dwell on last week’s game. The focus is now, now, now. And now, the Minnesota Vikings are trying to put an ugly loss to the San Francisco 49ers behind them.
Teddy Bridgewater described the situation best on Wednesday, expressing the importance of learning from the team’s mistakes and shifting the focus to the Detroit Lions:
“Simple, I watch the tape, learn from it and try not to make the same mistakes twice. This week we’re going to fly around practice and Sunday we’re going to go out there and just play at a higher level.”
Like the rest of the team, Bridgewater struggled, admitting to being “too excited” in his second-season debut. He sailed passes over receivers’ heads, missed open reads down the field, and showed signs of a quarterback affected by the threat of pressure.
The loss, however, isn’t on one man’s shoulders. The Vikings struggled in all phases of the game, and head coach Mike Zimmer called the defeat an “equal opportunity” effort. No one, from middle linebacker Gerald Hodges to running back Adrian Peterson, was spared from his criticism.
After the jump, I’ll take a look at four plays that exemplify the Vikings struggles on Monday night. They’re indicative of the night Mike Zimmer’s young team suffered through and offer valuable lessons moving forward.