Sunday, June 25, 2017

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Vikings Must Rediscover Their Identity
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Minnesota Vikings face a bit of an identity crisis. The team that started the regular season 5-0 is suddenly 5-3, stuck in the middle of an ugly three-game losing streak.

Minnesota’s vaunted defense isn’t just bending, it’s breaking. The offense, mired in mediocrity, is making the slow transition from Norv Turner to newly-minted offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur. And head coach Mike Zimmer, for all his acclaim, can’t seem to right the ship.

It’s not that the Vikings were a bad team simply squeaking by; at one point, the defense was compared to the vaunted 1985 Chicago Bears. And it’s not that the roster is full of holes; general manager Rick Spielman’s long been praised for his ability to draft, develop, and maintain a deep collection of talented players.

No, it’s that the Vikings have lost their identity.

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Vikings Territory

Vikings Territory adds writer BJ Reidell to their staff.

I’m not an overly superstitious fellow and what we do here at Vikings Territory certainly doesn’t play into the cosmic forces currently forcing the Vikings into a nosedive. BUT… just to be safe… we’ve decided to shake things up in case we can help Minnesota pull out of this.

I’m thrilled to introduce you all to BJ Reidell. The St. Paul native, who now resides in Bismarck, is increasingly well-known within Vikings circles for his work at NFCN Barroom.

BJ is a graduate of Marquette University and works as a sports journalist for the Bismarck Tribune. He also co-hosts the popular About The Labor podcast which focuses on the ever-evolving state of the Minnesota Vikings.

Please join me in welcoming BJ to the VT crew down in the comments section or by following him on Twitter. We are certainly excited about adding his voice and knowledge to our mix of coverage with a whole half of a season left to be played and an exciting offseason already on the horizon.

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Five thoughts after Week 9, with a dash of optimism

Classic Minnesota Vikings Football
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

1. These are the Vikings I grew to love (and loathe)

Don’t get me wrong, Mike Zimmer’s current Minnesota Vikings are a far cry from the teams I grew up watching. Long gone are the days of inept quarterback play, porous defense, and conservative coaching; or so I thought.

On Sunday, we were brutally reminded of the bumbling franchise that’s broken so many hearts over the years. The Vikings shouldn’t have lost to the Detroit Lions, and they shouldn’t have done so in such ugly fashion. A 22-16 overtime defeat wouldn’t have been so devastating it wasn’t the third in a string of embarrassing failures.

More than that, it would’ve been acceptable had the Vikings looked anything like the team that started the season 5-0. Instead, we saw many of the traits that defined the Vikings of old; the Vikings that fell short of expectations and consistently found ways to lose games.

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Week Nine Highlights
Image Courtesy of Vikings.com

Week Nine Highlights Will Feature The Likes Of Stefon Diggs, Adam Thielen, Everson Griffen and Chad Greenway.

The Minnesota Vikings offense, particularly the offensive line, looked improved with Pat Shurmur calling the plays instead of Norv Turner. Still, they could not get the job done when they most needed to, and the Vikings lost in overtime to the Detroit Lions by a margin of 22-16.

The offense wasn’t entirely to blame, with Blair Walsh costing them points and the defense struggling to maintain their dominant ways, and this three game slide is getting old quick. Still, the Vikings remain in first place (barely) of the NFC North and there is still a half of a season left to get things figured out.

Now, in our third straight week, we face the less-fun task of anointing a “Player of the Game” via your voting in the poll at the bottom.

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Minnesota Vikings - Detroit Lions

The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings’ Death Spiral 2016 Tour continued rolling along Sunday afternoon at historic US Bank Stadium as the Purple dropped to the Detroit Lions 22-16 in extra football time. The Vikes are now 0-3 off the bye and the formally wrapped up NFC North now turns into a three-way dog fight with Green Bay and now Detroit. We recap Sunday’s mehness.

Today’s Life Comes At You Fast
• This Was the Worst Loss of the Season
• Pat Shurmur Report Card
• Blair Walsh Needs to Go
• The Defense is Suddenly Average
• Give Detroit Credit For Winning the Game Too
• Stefon Diggs Appreciation
• So What About the Running Game?
• Chad Greenway Was Good So I Have to Move to Mexico Now
• Are We Sure Anthony Barr is Good?
• Biggest Test of Zimmer’s Head Coaching Career

All that and more “ALL THE STUFFED ANIMALS. ALL OF THEM.” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint

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