Saturday, January 21, 2017

cordarrelle patterson

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Thankful for a Minnesota Vikings Win
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

1. Happy early Thanksgiving, friends.

Thanksgiving came a little early for the Minnesota Vikings and their fans. Following Sunday’s roller coaster of a victory over the Arizona Cardinals, the thought of Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday night got that much more delicious.

While I’m thankful for the win — six weeks in the making — I’m not ready to sit down at the dinner table just yet. Sure, the Vikings are 6-4 and tied for first place in the NFC North, but their co-champions are gearing up for what’s likely the team’s most significant game of the season.

Thursday morning, as we prep the turkey, loosen the sweatpants and enjoy the company of our loved ones, the Detroit Lions will try to sweep the Vikings for the second time in three years. Minnesota enters Week 12 having skirted a five-game losing streak, while the Lions are enjoying their own two-game series of wins.

As Vikings fans, we deserve to savor yesterday’s “W.” The defense came back to life with four sacks, Sam Bradford played another relatively clean game, and Mike Zimmer’s crew put together an impressive display of  “team football.”

This is only the appetizer of what could be a satisfying full-course meal on Thursday.

And on a side note, since it is that time of the year, thank you. Thank you for being such loyal readers, followers, and fans of this crazy, wonderful team. You make writing here a joy, and I’m thankful to call Vikings Territory home.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

This whole losing thing is really starting to get old. Maybe the Minnesota Vikings could come up with a few plays this Sunday to actually end the game with more points than their opponent?

Strange concept, but if done right, it may work.

The Vikings came close last week, holding the Detroit Lions to three points and 36 total yards in the second half until their very last two drives. But unfortunately, it was those last two drives that ended up winning the game for the Lions and handing Minnesota their third straight loss of the season.

Now in order for the Vikings to avoid losing four games in a row this weekend against the Washington Redskins, there are a few suggestions they may want to take into consideration.

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Marcus Sherels' Place
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

With Minnesota Vikings punt returner Marcus Sherels out against the Chicago Bears, a few players may see extra special teams playing time on Monday Night. Sherels injured his wrist in the team’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles last week and will miss his first game since 2011 when he began fielding punts in purple and gold.

One player who could take his place is Cordarrelle Patterson, who was questionable entering the night but passed the NFL’s concussion protocol in time for Monday Night Football. He’s returned punts before but has primarily been a kick returner for the Vikings. Adam Thielen also fielded punts during the preseason but has never taken a regular season snap at the position.

The rest of Minnesota’s inactive players include:

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Epic failures in the red zone spoiled the Vikings’ visit to Lincoln Financial Field as the Philadelphia Eagles (4-2) handed the Minnesota Vikings (5-1) their first loss of the season with a butt-ugly 21-10 defeat. The red zone woes from 2015 appear to be haunting the Vikings’ offense again this season, and it was certainly evident on Sunday.

According to teamranking.com, the Vikings rank 27th in the league in red zone efficiency. This season’s poor red zone production is somewhat surprising because the Vikings have an accurate quarterback in Sam Bradford and big, athletic pass-catchers like Kyle Rudolph, MyCole Pruitt, Cordarrelle Patterson, Charles Johnson and Laquon Treadwell. Yet with all that talent, the Vikings have only managed eight touchdowns in 17 red zone opportunities.

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