Monday, May 30, 2016

everson griffen

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Zimmer's blitzes could be the key for the Vikings on Sunday

Vikings Blitz Wilson
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Sifting through recent Seattle Seahawks game film, it’s difficult to find many weaknesses for the Minnesota Vikings to exploit. Russell Wilson is playing at MVP levels, especially as of late. In Seattle’s last seven games, he’s thrown 24 touchdown passes and just one interception, helping him finish the season as the first player in NFL history to record at least 4,000 passing yards, 30 passing touchdowns, and 500 rushing yards in a single season. Known more for his mobility than his ability from within the pocket, Wilson is thriving as a traditional pocket passer. This season, he’s posted a 118.6 passer rating when throwing from the pocket, which is higher than any qualifying quarterback in the past three years.

When the Vikings and Seahawks met last, Wilson hurt Mike Zimmer’s defense every which way. He scored one touchdown on the ground and threw another three, two of which were 20 or more yards down the field. That game kickstarted his stretch of All-Pro play and helped the Seahawks win six of their last seven games. But that game was also a lopsided affair, one that found the Vikings shorthanded on the defensive side of the ball. Missing three of their most important players — one at each level of the defense — the Vikings surrendered 433 yards to the Seahawks and allowed a season-high 38 points. Finally healthy and playing some of their best football, the Vikings have the chance to upset the Seahawks and win their first playoff game.

But how can they slow down Wilson and Seattle’s suddenly dangerous passing attack? It’s simple — put pressure on the quarterback and blitz.

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For the first time in his career, Griffen wins the NFC Defensive Player of the Week Award

Everson Griffen Named NFC Defensive Player of the Week
Photo courtesy of Vikings.com

Minnesota Vikings DE Everson Griffen has been named the NFC Defensive Player of the Week after an impressive outing in Week 17 against the Green Bay Packers. Griffen played a critical role in the game with the NFC North Championship on the line and wreaked havoc against Packers backup left tackle Josh Sitton.

Griffen finished the day with two sacks and multiple hurries on Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. One of the sacks ended with Rodgers having the ball dislodged from his grasp just as he was throwing the ball, resulting in a Captain Munnerlyn touchdown – a pivotal moment in the game.

The other sack came on a play in the fourth quarter where Griffen refused to give up and was able to bring Rodgers down to force a field goal with just 5:35 left in the game.

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The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings are your NFC North Champions after defeating the hated Green Bay Packers 20-13 Sunday Night at Lambeau Field. Everson Griffen and the Vikings defense kept Aaron Rodgers and Eddie “Slim” Lacy in check to bring home the Purple’s first division title since 2009. The Vikes square off against the Seattle Seahawks (revenge game, son) in the Wild Card Round at noon Sunday at The Bank. But before we look ahead, let’s look back at the Vikings shaking off the “You can’t beat Green Bay/You can’t win big games in prime time” narratives.

Other “This is Our Damn Division” Talking Points Include
• The Idea of Losing Intentionally Was Moronic
• Defense Take a Bow
• We Don’t Win Without Everson Griffen. Period.
• Teddy Was Okay When Throwing Right-Handed….
• Adrian Got His Rushing Title
• FREE McKinnon
• Adam Thielen: NFC Title Game MVP
• Vikings Got the Calls?
• Zimmer Farmer Blow = Elite
• Zimmer End of Half/Game Management…
• Twitter Qs
• Charting Out the Vikings Revenge Tour

All this and other “Home ” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The inactives lists for both Sunday Night Football teams are now in.

The Green Bay Packers will be without veteran cornerback Sam Shields and, perhaps more importantly, their starting left tackle David Bakhtiari. The Packers offensive line seems like a logical weakness to exploit in Week 17 and here is hoping Everson Griffen can properly take advantage.

The other inactives for the Packers are LB Jayrone Elliot, CB Ladarius Gunter, QB Brett Hundley, TE Justin Perillo, and G Josh Walker.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

For the second straight week, the Minnesota Vikings will be without three of their top defenders. Linval Joseph, who was limited in practice on Thursday and Friday, is missing his third straight game since injuring his foot against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 12. Barr (hand/groin) and Smith (knee/hamstring) returned to the field against the Seattle Seahawks two weeks ago, but haven’t seen the field since leaving that game early in the first quarter.

Both Barr and Smith were ruled out on Friday, opening the door for two of the Vikings’ promising rookies — Edmond Robinson and Anthony Harris. Robinson played well in place of Barr against the Arizona Cardinals and Harris flashed his range in the secondary, breaking up a would-be touchdown to Cardinals wide receiver Michael Floyd.

A look at the rest of the team’s inactives:

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