Wednesday, September 2, 2015

adrian peterson

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GUMP

Image courtesy of Vikings.com

More often than not, Skip Bayless embraces the role of human clickbait, bred by ESPN to incite anger among fan bases and drive traffic to his daily morning show, ESPN First Take. A little over a year ago, Bayless made the Vikings a target by criticizing then-rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater:

Bayless’s jab at Bridgewater sparked heated debate; “Are his hands too small? Is he too skinny to play in the NFL?”. One year later, and Bridgewater, like most who end up on the other end of Bayless’s buffoonery, is smashing those low expectations. He won the Pepsi Rookie of the Year Award and finished the season as the league’s best rookie quarterback — Bridgewater threw 14 touchdowns and went 6-6 as the team’s starter.

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In the theme of Mad Men, Sam Ekstrom (@SamEkstrom) of 105 The Ticket and Cold Omaha joined the show to make it two dark, handsome, mysterious, and creative dudes talking about Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings football. No smoking though because: 2015. And no drinking brown liquor because: 9am on a Monday. (Okay maybe a little brown liquor)

Also in the theme of the final season of Mad Men, I broke up the chat into two parts. Please enjoy! Preferably while sipping an ice cold Coca-Cola.

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Arif: 9-7
The Vikings were 7-9 last year, and I think they played like a 6-10 team—the bad luck happened about as often as the good luck. I think Teddy improves significantly, and it looks like Adrian Peterson is playing, so that should bring the offense up to at least league average even with the OL problems. On defense there are still a lot of moving parts, with a rookie corner, some questions at LB and safety and no clear answer at LDE. That said, it can be a top-10 defense even with those questions. Normally that would be a good case for 10-6, but I think that it is not only really difficult to improve a team more than three wins in a season but also that the Vikings have one of the most difficult schedules in the country.

Carl: 10-6
The Week One matchup against the 49ers on the road will be a huge tone setter for the Vikings. I think the 49ers are beatable, and the Vikings will also pick up a win in week two against the Lions. The Vikings have some tough games early, and the week three, four and six contests could very well dig the Vikings in a hole with games against the Chargers, at Broncos and Chiefs. The Vikings should win one of those three games. After weathering a 3-2 start, the Vikings will win the next four against at Lions, at Bears, Rams and at Raiders. The Vikings then start a three-game skid with the Packers, at Falcons, and Seahawks. The Vikings will be 7-5 heading into the final four games, winning three vs at Cardinals, Bears, Giants and finishing the season with a loss to the Packers.

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Photo Courtesy of Ashley Davis

There is no offseason in the NFL. Which means there’s no offseason for Purple FTW! Tom Shefchik (@Shefonomics), co-editor of Sporting Sota, joins us to talk Vikings and what’s new and different at SS. No shortage of Vikings news: Rookie Mini Camp happened over the weekend, Teddy took a high school girl to prom, and Jerry Jones refuses to let his Adrian dream die.

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