Sunday, January 21, 2018

bud grant

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Vikings O.C. Pat Shurmur wins PFWA NFL Assistant Coach of the Year award.

Pat Shurmur, Offensive Coordinator of the Minnesota Vikings, was named 2017 NFL Assistant Coach of the Year by the Professional Football Writers of America Thursday.

Shurmur took over as Vikings offensive coordinator in 2017 after serving on an interim basis in 2016. He was recognized for orchestrating a Vikings offense that produced plenty of big plays throughout the season. His efforts helped lead the team to a 13-3 record and a No. 2 seed in the NFC playoffs.

The Vikings offense ranked 11th in the NFL in total yards during the regular season. According to PFWA the Vikings had 68 plays of 20-plus yards (7th in the league), and 12 scoring drives of 80-plus yards, eight more than in 2016. The offense ranked 10th in scoring, averaging 23.9 points per game.

Shurmur’s guidance helped the Vikings offense overcome significant obstacles during the season. The Vikings lost starting quarterback Sam Bradford for all but two quarters after Week 1. The team then lost starting running back Dalvin Cook to a season-ending ACL injury in Week 4. Still, Shurmur found a way to get consistent production out of his players.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Forget about the four Super Bowls. The Vikings have made the playoffs more times than you think.

Everyone knows that this could be the year the Minnesota Vikings become the first NFL team to play a Super Bowl in their home stadium. The chances get better with every win. This year’s squad rolled into the playoffs in style, earning a 13-3 record, NFC North Championship, and a first-round bye.

With a proven head coach, a talented young roster, and perhaps the most envious quarterback situation in the NFL, both the present and the future are looking bright for the Vikings franchise, while the rest of the teams in the division appear to be moving backwards.

The Packers’ playoff streak just ended after eight seasons, resulting in a mass transformation of the front office and coaching staff. The Lions just finished 9-7, fired their head coach, and have to be wondering why they gave their quarterback so much money. And the Bears? They’re simply “Da Bears.” They’re like the new Lions of old, I guess.

With how things have unfolded for the Vikings this season, it got me thinking — how have the Vikings stacked up against other NFL teams in terms of making the playoffs year-in and year-out since their inception? Here’s a quick run through the team’s history and its success in the postseason.

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image courtesy of Vikings.com

Let’s get this out of the way before things get out of hand: This is in no way an announcement of a political stance. I hardly know enough about politics to have a position on anything in the first place, to be quite honest.

I have no interest in politics; it’s just two different core sets of beliefs consistently trying to one-up each other in the stubbornness department. Sure, I have my beliefs and values based on what I’ve learned through my unique experiences and education, but I refuse to fall into the never-ending trap of constant bickering.

This column has nothing to do with politics. It has everything to do with football and common sense.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Friday’s ICYMI: Bud Grant turns 90, your easy-to-reference guide on the 2017 Vikings rookies and their paths to the purple the gold.

VT’s “In Case You Missed It” intends to funnel every news report, the most general of informational notes and a handful of the best analysis articles pertaining to the Minnesota Vikings into one all-encompassing write-up. If you don’t have the time to follow the Purple and Gold as much as you may like, allow Vikings Territory to do the dirty work for you with our catch-all Vikings recap of everything you may have missed.