Friday, November 27, 2015

chad greenway

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The focus this week is understandably the Green Bay Packers, who will look to come to Minnesota, defeat the Vikings at a home, and pull half a game ahead in a tightly-contested NFC North divisional race. But before Lindsey and Brent break down the key offensive and defensive matchups tomorrow, I want to look back on last week’s victory over the Oakland Raiders.

While the Vikings excelled in a number of areas — the running game, pass defense, turnover differential — one stands out in particular, because it may be the key to the Vikings taking a two-game lead over the Packers — the pass rush.

Before they hosted the Vikings, Oakland’s offense line hadn’t given up a sack since Week 7 against the New York Jets. According to Football Outsiders, they’re the best pass protecting unit in the league, having allowed just 12 sacks this season (2.9% adjusted sack rate). The Vikings, though, exploited what’s been a stout group up front, combining aggressive first steps, solid technique, and Mike Zimmer’s varied looks to create confusion and havoc at the line of scrimmage.

They sacked Derek Carr twice and flushed him from the pocket a number of times, forcing the second-year quarterback into bad decisions and even poorer throws. That’s been the blueprint to beat Aaron Rodgers this season, and against the Packers’ 17th-ranked offensive line, Minnesota’s front-seven should have little trouble doing just that to No. 12.

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The image of Teddy Bridgewater motionless on the ground last week left many wondering if he’d miss today’s game against the Oakland Raiders. Fortunately for the Minnesota Vikings, Bridgewater passed the concussion protocol and will start in less than an hour. His play will be critical as the Vikings look to attack the league’s worst-ranked passing defense, which is allowing 314 yards passing per game.

Bridgewater is also joined by Anthony Barr, who’s been battling a hand injury he sustained against the Rams. He will, however, be missing his partner in crime, Eric Kendricks. The rookie linebacker is fighting through a painful rib injury and his scratch appears to be a precaution. Six other players are inactive, including:

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The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings are 6-2 at the midway point of the 2015 campaign. It’s a hellagood start so let’s celebrate by handing out some hellabad fake mid-season awards!

The Categories Are….
• Best Offensive Lineman
• Best Rookie
• TJ Maxx Best Value
• Best Zimmer-ism
• Best Offensive Player
• Best Defensive Player
• Best Comparison of a Vikings Player to a Food Item
• Best Special Teams Player
• Best Injured Linebacker
• Most Underrated Viking
• Most Overrated Viking
• Best Game So Far
• Best Vikings Podcast….

We also pay tribute to the recently departed, and former love of my life, Chase Ford. #RIP #ItsAllAboutTheU

All that and other “Bradley Cooper should replace Sendejo” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint.

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The revolving door at linebacker continues for the Minnesota Vikings, who just placed Audie Cole on Injured Reserve and signed free agent Jason Trusnik to the active roster. Cole, who broke his ankle against the St. Louis Rams on Sunday, will miss the remainder of the 2015 season.

Trusnik comes to Minnesota after stints with the Carolina Panthers, Miami Dolphins, Cleveland Browns, and New York Jets. The former Ohio Northern Klondike was an undrafted free agent following the 2007 NFL Draft and has played in 109 career games (24 starts), tallying 146 total tackles, 4 PDs, 4 FRs and 1 FF in eight seasons.

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The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings grabbed a share of the NFC North lead with a rough and tumble 21-18 overtime win Sunday over the St. Louis Rams. That should be the headline, but it’s not. All Vikings fans already hated defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, but now we somehow hate him with the fury of a thousand suns after something-called-Lamarcus Joyner threw his elbow into Teddy Bridgewater’s face as the second-year quarterback was sliding. Us Vikings fans cannot separate the fact that we have history with Captain Bountygate, but I try not to dwell on that storyline as our 6-2 Vikes have a solid young team with a great leader in Mike Zimmer and may make some noise come playoff time. Heal up, Teddy and let’s roll.

Other “Gregg Williams Should Be Deported to Mars” Talking Points Include
• I love you Mike Zimmer. So so much.
• LOL Green Bay
• Teddy Before the Cheapshot
• Where You At Mike Wallace?
• The Offensive Line is Back!
• Old Adrian Peterson is Like 2013 Kobe
• Linval Joseph for MVP
• Containing Todd Gurley
• Trae Waynes is a UFO
• Stefon Diggs Held Quiet
• Zimmer going for the Morninwheg in OT (But it worked and was smart)
• Random Game Thoughts
• On to Oakland
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All that and other “Start Over” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint.

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