Saturday, July 30, 2016

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Not everything was bad...right?

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The 49ers didn’t just deflate the balloon that was the Vikings’ hopes and expectations for 2015. They snatched it from the hands of optimistic fans, grabbed the sharpest needle they could find, and popped it right in their faces.

Last night’s game was ugly, and one a distraught fanbase won’t soon forget. Carlos Hyde pounded head coach Mike Zimmer’s defense, carrying the ball 26 times for 168 yards and two touchdowns. Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback the Vikings were supposed to contain, eluded pass rushers and consistently moved the chains with his legs. In the words of Zimmer, maybe his team “just isn’t ready for primetime.”

I could go on, but I won’t — I’ll save the negativity for a breakdown of the game on Wednesday. Today, I want to take a different route, a more positive route. Despite the failures on offense, defense, and special teams — unacceptable given the team’s five preseason games to prepare — there were a few encouraging signs as the Vikings transition to their Week 2 opponent, the Detroit Lions.

Who stood out, and what can the Vikings build on as they try to establish an identity?

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The San Francisco 49ers looked impressive as running back Carlos Hyde rushed for 168 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries to give new head coach Jim Tomsula his second career win in the NFL. In 2010, Tomsula won a week 17 contest against the Arizona Cardinals as an interim coach after Mike Singletary was fired.

Tomsula and the 49ers coaching staff had the right game plan in place to shut down Adrian Peterson and the Vikings offense. Norv Turners offense got off to a slow start only managing four first downs and 56 total yards in the first half of play. Colin Kaepernick lead an efficient pistol attack as the 49ers took an early 7-0 halftime advantage behind a strong running game. Carlos Hyde found the end zone with 4:58 to play in the second quarter to open the scoring on a sick spin move that he was able to bounce to the outside for 10 yards and the score.

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Andrew Sendejo
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Robert Blanton had run all offseason and preseason as the starter at safety next to Harrison Smith.

For the first game of the regular season, Minnesota Vikings coach Mike Zimmer is returning to the alignment he finished last season with. Prior to Monday night’s game at San Francisco, Andrew Sendejo was named the starter at safety.

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    Good evening, Skoldiers. Are you ready for some football?

    The 2015 offseason for the Minnesota Vikings has been one of great excitement which has led us to this moment… opening night on Monday Night Football with expectations so high Roger Goodell wants to suspend Jerome Simpson again.

    Adrian Peterson is back! Teddy is under center! Trae Waynes, Eric Kendricks, and T.J. Clemmings will surely get in on their first meaningful NFL action. Norv! Zimmer!

    If there is one major concern coming out of the preseason it is certainly our offensive line’s ability to be resilient, but I’m not wanting to go all Captain Buzzkill at this particular moment. Kick back, let your boss know you’ll be two hours late tomorrow morning, pour yourself whatever beverage you prefer, and enjoy the game!

    The Vikings Territory staff has provided their pre-game predictions after the jump, don’t forget to join us on Draft Kings next week to try and take our money, and prepare to fill the comments section with comments of awe and glee!

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    A few of the Minnesota Vikings’ rookies will have to wait to make their NFL debuts.

    Receiver Stefon Diggs was, perhaps, the most noteworthy among Minnesota’s six gameday inactive players. Fellow draft pick Edmond Robinson is also inactive, along with rookie quarterback Taylor Heinicke, offensive linemen Jeremiah Sirles, tight end Chase Ford and defensive end Justin Trattou.

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