Monday, October 23, 2017

Pat Elflein

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Vikings Week 6 Injury Report

In Sunday’s divisional showdown against the NFC North rival Green Bay Packers (4-1), the Minnesota Vikings (3-2) will be without their starting quarterback and top receiver. Sam Bradford, who has missed four of the past five games, is day-to-day with a knee injury, while Stefon Diggs is nursing a hamstring injury.

Bradford reached a point of being unable to protect himself Monday night against the Chicago Bears, but he did not suffer a new injury in his knee, according to team trainer Eric Sugarman. After missing practice this week, he was officially ruled out by head coach Mike Zimmer Friday.

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Turnstile, he is not.

Riley Reiff turns heads
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Duct tape may prove a quick fix for leaky pipes, but as every DIY repairman knows, a patchwork job only lasts so long. In the NFL, where leaks in the offensive line can flood a team’s Super Bowl aspirations, duct tape is the least desirable option in a general manager’s toolbox.

Jake Long, Jeremiah Sirles, Matt Kalil, and T.J. Clemmings were just that — temporary measures in the season-long effort to protect Sam Bradford‘s blindside. The Minnesota Vikings survived the year, but not without catastrophe along the way. General manager Rick Spielman recognized he’d need more than a roll of tape to fix the critical infrastructure; he’d need to replace the pipes completely.

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Purple FTW! Podcast: Vikings-Saints Recap: We Own The North (ep. 412)

The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings defended their home domicile Monday Night turning back the New Orleans Saints at the gates of Historic US Bank Stadium in a convincing 29-19 victory. Former Viking Legend Adrian Peterson was held in check, while rookie running back Dalvin Cook broke records. The Purple recovered from a listless and lethargic preseason to kick the 2017 campaign off with a statement win. 19-0 in my opinion.

Today’s Talkers Include:
• Slingin’ Sam Bradford!
• Dalvin Cook’s Debut
• Stefon Diggs Go BOOM!
• The Offensive Line Was ________.
• The Zimmer Hellfire Defense is Back
• Welcome Back Anthony Barr
• Trae Waynes Wasn’t Terrible?
• Adrian Peterson is Old and Bad
• Is This Sustainable?
• Odds and Ends

All that and more “Super Bowl, Homeboy” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

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saints
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

1. Yes, Sam Bradford can throw deep, and he’s pretty good at it.

Full disclosure: I started jotting down bullet points after the first two offensive drives, and the original headline for this point was, “Sam Bradford: still not letting ‘er rip.” Because up until then, he wasn’t; the Vikings offense moved the ball, but we saw Bradford dink and dunk down the field and ignore open receivers running longer routes in favor of checkdowns. This, of course, became all too common last season, and tainted the all-time completion percentage record Bradford set in 2016 in the eyes of many.

But then something changed. Sam Bradford started looking downfield, and finding open receivers, and the Vikings got two quick touchdowns to end the first half (and another in the second), almost all because of Bradford’s arm. Maybe he was feeling the game out, or maybe he just got comfortable with the Vikings new-look offensive line (more on that later), but suddenly Sam Bradford was uncorking beautiful intermediate and deep shots, one after another, and the Minnesota Vikings looked like a completely different team.

And when I say beautiful, I mean flat-out, drop-dead gorgeous. Sure, it was against the Saints defense, but Bradford was putting the ball exactly where it needed to be just about every time. This particular throw was my favorite:

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Vikings turned heads over the weekend by cutting one of their highest-rated offensive linemen of 2016. Alex Boone, who signed a four-year deal with the Vikings last March, was released by the team after just one season in Minnesota.

According to multiple reports, Boone refused a pay cut as the Vikings trimmed their roster to 53 players. The team then attempted to trade Boone before waiving him. There were reportedly multiple reasons why the team parted ways with the veteran, but the one-year stop raises questions as to whether the team did its due diligence before signing Boone to a long-term deal.

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