Wednesday, December 7, 2016

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Can Mike Zimmer and the Minnesota Vikings handle the cold on Sunday?

Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Living in California, “cold weather” is considered anything below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s warm for Vikings fans in Minnesota, right? For those attending Sunday morning’s Wild Card matchup with the Seattle Seahawks, they’ll need all the warmth they can get; according to Weather.com and AccuWeather, the forecast in Minneapolis calls for a high of 1℉, with a 10-15 mph wind chill factor and a low of -9℉ at kickoff.

When the teams first met at TCF Bank Stadium in December, they enjoyed unseasonably warm temperatures that eclipsed freezing at kickoff. This Sunday, they’ll meet in what could be one of the coldest games in NFL history. When asked Wednesday how the potentially sub-zero temperatures could affect his team, head coach Mike Zimmer seemed unfazed by the cold.

“The cold is the cold, he told reporters. “The ball is going to be harder, a little more slippery. I think it’s going to be a lot of concentration when guys are out on the field, they’ve got to concentrate and really don’t worry about the cold, you worry about playing.”

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Playoffs, Homeboy. As the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings prepare to take on the Seattle Seahawks on the surface of Pluto Sunday, we welcome in Di Murphy (@DiMurphyMN) of The Daily Norseman for her weekly spot to set this mother on fire with Hot Takes.

Besides discussing Making a Murderer (which I do at length), we dive into the deliciousness of winning the NFC North, why this team isn’t satisfied with being one-and-done in the playoffs, how Seattle can get got, how Harrison Smith is a better safety than Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas combined, why the 38-7 beatdown was a fluke, if there’s any coaches in the NFL we’d take over Mike Zimmer, and why fans going to the game Sunday have no right to complain about the cold.

All this and other “Home ” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Those of us that observe the Minnesota Vikings carefully know that the Vikings lost more than just a backup tight end when Rhett Ellison suffered a significant knee injury against the Packers on Sunday night.

They lost a key part of the weekly game plan and a guy that has helped immensely when it comes to making this offensive line look less terrible than they really are.

Ellison is part of a Vikings tradition that predates Adrian Peterson’s arrival to Minnesota. That tradition, which was passed along to Ellison by career-long Viking Jim Kleinsasser, is to essentially place a sixth offensive lineman on the field who is disguised as a tight end.

Sure, both Kleinsasser and Ellison can catch and run and all of that… but, let’s be honest, we know how those guys earn their paychecks.

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Cordarrelle Patterson’s future with the Minnesota Vikings has been a hot topic for three seasons now, sometimes for the good he has and done on and off the field, and often due to his lack of production on the field.

The thing that keeps cropping up within the fan base, however, is Patterson’s seemingly aloof attitude and perceived lack of dedication to being a professional football player. This narrative came to a head on Sunday when Patterson allowed Green Bay kicker Mason Crosby to catch him from behind and save a potential touchdown by popping the ball loose from Patterson’s grip.

The turnover allowed Green Bay an unnecessary chance at a comeback, while Patterson’s sideline demeanor drew scorn from Vikings fans from all around. Patterson appeared to be laughing and joking with teammates on the sideline shortly after the huge mistake and that seemingly jovial attitude came to a peak when Xavier Rhodes intercepted an Aaron Rodgers pass in the endzone to keep the Packers at bay.

These images, Patterson smiling after a kicker bested him in a major way, brought all of the built up frustration with the former first rounder to a head.

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