Wednesday, December 7, 2016

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Vikings Raiders
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Vikings have won four straight games. They’ve won on the road, against division foes and, most recently, against a team with a winning record. The Vikings are 6-2 and are now not only in the playoff conversation but also in the division championship conversation. Looking ahead at the schedule. the Vikings have some difficult match ups in front of them. Just a week ago, ESPN found that the Vikings have the hardest remaining schedule in the NFL. It seems like from this point forward, every week is going to be a tough game.

This week is no different as the Vikings travel to Oakland and take on a similarly young and up-and-coming team. Featuring some intriguing player parallels between the likes of Stefon Diggs and Amari Cooper as well as Anthony Barr and Khalil Mack, the duel most people are talking about are between the two sophomore quarterbacks, Teddy Bridgewater and Derek Carr. Both quarterbacks have had impressive early campaigns in their young careers and it should be fun to watch the two go head-to-head in what is hopefully a display of the NFL’s future at the position.

We still have a couple of days yet until these pillaging teams face off. In the meantime, we’ve compiled a bunch of links to get your prepared for the game and catch you up on the latest Vikings news.

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I’ve been introduced to #RaidersTwitter, so today’s show art should go over real well….

It’s another Arif Hasan Friday here on Purple FTW! We chat with our man about the upcoming throwdown between the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings and the Los Angeles St. Louis Oakland Raiders. Topics covered include: the almost unprecedented level at which Linval Joseph is playing, breaking down which individual skills Derek Carr and Teddy Bridgewater are better at, how Bill “3×5” Musgrave has changed since leaving the Vikings, why Arif wants to marry Anthony Barr, and we go over Pro Bowl picks aka ALL IN FOR JOE WEBB.

All that and other “I Dare Anyone To Do THIS to Zimmer” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint.

Read all of Arif’s stuff at The Daily Norseman and Vikings Journal as well as listen to his podcast Norse Code.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Minnesota Vikings don’t pass the ball particularly well (210.6 yards per game), they don’t score a ton of points (21 points per game), and they don’t have an explosive offense (5.15 yards per play). Despite their deficiencies, the Vikings are 6-2 and climbing in the NFC playoff standings. They’re tied with the Green Bay Packers for first place in the division. They’re currently on a four-game win streak. They’re the second-best scoring defense in the league. And yet, they’re three-point underdogs to the Raiders this weekend.

Why? Well, it starts with Derek Carr, who is playing the best football of his young career (19 touchdowns to just four interceptions on the year). Their offense is scoring over 26 points per game, while their defense continues to shut down opposing running backs, allowing just 97 yards per game. Though they’re 4-4, the Raiders are a team on the rise with the weapons to challenge the Vikings on offense, defense, and special teams.

Around the Internet, a mere seven of 32 experts are picking the Vikings to win on Sunday. On paper, it makes sense — the Vikings are statistically inferior to the Raiders in a number of offensive categories. If the game becomes a shootout, it’ll be difficult for Minnesota to keep up. But as they showed last week against the Chicago Bears and this week against the Rams, their strengths far outweigh their weakness. Whomever (and wherever) the Vikings play, their running attack and team defense can carry them to victory.

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Photo courtesy of vikings.com

For a 6-2 football team, there have been plenty of doubts about the 2015 Vikings. There was plenty of skepticism about the Vikings’ ability to win on the road, especially within the division. How about winning at Soldier Field? Ok, how about beating a team with a winning record?

Thankfully, the Vikings have overcome all of the prior skepticism and have proven to be a legitimate contender, especially because of the defense.

The schedule isn’t getting any easier, by the way. As the Bridgewater led Vikings head to Oakland to face his draft mate in Derek Carr, the Vikings prepare for arguably their most difficult defensive match up on 2015.

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The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings (6-2) are preparing to enter palatial and historic O.co stadium Sunday afternoon to take on the Los Angeles Oakland Raiders (4-4). To get some insight on the opposition, we welcomed in Asher Mathews (@AsherMathews) of Thoughts From the Dark Side Raiders blog to talk a little Silver and Black.

We talked about the Derek Carr-vs-Teddy Bridgewater debate, how our former boy Bill “3×5” Musgrave is doing things in Oakland, why the Zimmer Hellfire Defense™ vs said offense is the key to Sunday’s matchup, how the Raiders defense can get got by Teddy and the Vikings, and I demand gratitude from Asher as we saved his franchise from the stank of Troy Williamson (because you know Al Davis would’ve loved that speed).

All that and other “Vikings Fans are Sadomasochists!” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint.

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