January 20-25 - Senior Bowl
January 26 - Pro Bowl
February 17 - First day of franchise / transition player designation
February 19-25 - Scouting Combine
March 11 - Free Agency begins
March 23 - Owner's Meeting
April 7 - Off-season workouts begin for teams with new HC
April 17 - 2014 Schedule Released
April 21 - Off-season workouts begin for teams with returning HC
May 2 - Deadline for RFAs to sign offers
May 8-10 - NFL Draft
Well, the increasingly irrelevant Pro Bowl voting process has concluded and the Vikings will be sending four players to this year’s “contest” in Hawaii.
Running back Adrian Peterson, fullback Jerome Felton, defensive end Jared Allen, and kick Blair Walsh have all been selected. Peterson was an obvious choice, it is nice to see Felton and Walsh get the recognition they deserve, and Allen isn’t necessarily undeserving this year but was certainly aided by his name value.
An absolute abomination is that recently benched center Jeff Saturday received the honor over Vikings center John Sullivan. In fact, the Vikings offensive line being snubbed all together despite Adrian Peterson’s historic season is kind of, well, wrong.
It could also be argued that Antoine Winfield and Chad Greenway’s absence just further proves how underrated they are in today’s NFL that undervalues the importance of plain, simple, sound tackling.
Congrats to our four guys, and we’ll keep you updated on who might drop out and who might be filling in as alternates. All of that, of course, assumes the Vikings aren’t playing in the Super Bowl which is not totally 100% impossible.
The Vikings were expected to struggle greatly this week, as the Texans represent the AFC’s best, but they made it look easy as they cruised to victory.
A number of individual performances contributed to the win, but none really stand far out above the rest, so now you have the tough task of casting a single vote for this week’s VT game ball.
Here are your nominees:
CHRISTIAN PONDER: 16 of 30 for 174 yards and a touchdown. Seven runs for 48 yards.
ADRIAN PETERSON: 25 runs for 86 yards. One catch for 4 yards.
JARIUS WRIGHT: Five catches for 53 yards. One run for 8 yards.
BLAIR WALSH: Three for three on field goals (56, 41, 39) and two extra points.
HARRISON SMITH: Seven tackles, one sack, and one forced fumble.
ANTOINE WINFIELD: Five tackles, one sack.
JASPER BRINKLEY: Three tackles, one forced fumble.
This is coming up at a random time for those of you that maybe don’t read the comments on VT regularly. The rest of you, well, you know why I’m posting this now.
I ran across a 2007 interview with Adrian Peterson, which you can read here, and wanted to post this quote from Peterson after he was asked about his nickname:
“I’ve been hearing that since I was two. I ran around all the time. Never wanted to stop. Never wanted to sleep. I just kept going all day. My dad and mom gave me the nickname. When I started playing ball, my coaches said the same thing about how I played, that I could go all day.”
So, while fans of the other 31 NFL teams might be content to use the initials of any given player’s birth name in assigning nicknames (initials are initials, though, not nicknames) it is only fitting that a uniquely incredible player like Peterson be assigned something different… as a toddler… a long, long time ago.
It’s “All Day” or “A.D.” and that is that.
Tomorrow cannot be the end of the world. I haven’t found out if the Vikings make the playoffs yet. I haven’t witnessed Adrian Peterson break the rushing record. So many unanswered questions!
Anyways, I wanted to share with you all what I daydream about: Peterson breaking both the single game record and single game record this week… against the vaunted Texans defense… on the same play. Pure awesomeness is what that would be.
Here is the best of the best from around the web. Enjoy!
There is no doubt that Adrian Peterson led the Vikings to victory on Sunday, but it was the rarely seen big plays out of the Vikings defense that turned this one into a runaway win for the purple and gold.
The Vikings four sacks of Sam Bradford (Greenway, Ballard, Henderson, and Robison) are nothing out of the norm for the modern day Vikings, but they seemed to have the desire and ability to put an inferior team away on a couple of occasions. This is most noticeable because this is something we have seen very rarely this year.
Prior to Sunday, the Vikings had only 9 interceptions and Harrison Smith’s two touchdowns were the only ones returned for scores. That is why it was so nice to see Alan Williams mixing in some different looks, blitzing a little more often than normal, and dropping Everson Griffen back into the coverage scheme that resulted in the Vikings third pick six of the season.
The interception, coupled with Chad Greenway’s opportunistic fumble recovery, gave the Vikings the keys to their first two touchdown victory since week five against the Titans.
Incredible performances out of Adrian Peterson, the Vikings defense, and their special teams unit meant that the pressure was largely off of quarterback Christian Ponder which is exactly how they are going to continue to stay competitive in their remaining two weeks.
Big plays from the defense turned this game from a nail biter into a blowout and that is something I think we need to see more of as this young team grows into a legitimate force.
At the beginning of this month I stated that the Vikings playoff hopes died on Lambeau Field in their week 13 loss and while I still think that will be the case, I have great hopes for the future based off of what this young defense has shown me this season.
It would appear, however, that this team might be once again looking at the quarterback position as their top offseason need in order to continue taking things to the next level.
A nice Brian Robison sack followed shortly by an impressive Marcus Sherels return set Christian Ponder up for the best drive he has had in quite some time. Two runs, including a fourth down scramble, resulted in the young quarterback using his mobility to score the game’s first touchdown.
Then, with one Rams drive aside, it was all Vikings from there on out. A Chad Greenway fumble recovery, an Everson Griffen pick six, an 82 yard touchdown run from Adrian Peterson, and a pair of big field goals from Blair Walsh has all but given the Vikings a win in just one half of football.
The second half is sure to feature plenty of Adrian Peterson as he continues his quest for immortality. Enjoy!