Friday, November 27, 2015

xavier rhodes

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The Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings savored a tasty curb stomping of the San Diego Super Chargers 31-14 Sunday afternoon at The Bank. The Purple sealed the win in the second half with a solid running game and dominant defense that completely shut down Philip Rivers and the Bolts. We recap the action in our usual “Not too high/not too low” fashion!

Other “Manti Te’o isn’t real” Talkers Include
• Adrian is Adrian
• Vikings Fans Want The D
• Trae Waynes First Action
• Teddy Bridgewater Concerns
• Wide Receiver Rotation
• The Mandatory Offensive Line Talking Point
• Chad Greenway Lifetime Achievement Pick-6
• Kyle Rudolph: The Master of Getting 4 on 3rd & 6
• Everson > Jared in His Prime?
• Vikings fans had a right to boo because…
• Blair Walsh didn’t miss!
• We woulda won by fitty if Ragnar had been there…
• Visit our new sponsor Stars Draft for Daily Fantasy Sports!
• Bookmark us on Amazon & show some love!

All that and other “Start Over” nonsense on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint.

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When it comes to roster depth, Minnesota is doing quite well at the cornerback position.

On Monday, the Vikings added Jabari Price back to the active roster, leaving only Josh Robinson inactive. Robinson suffered a torn pectoral muscle prior to team OTAs and is currently on the Physically Unable to Perform list.

Head coach Mike Zimmer came to Minnesota with experience as a defensive coordinator, and it’s no secret that his specialty lies on that side of the field. Even more specifically, defensive backs seem to have a special place in his heart.

Associated Press Dave Campbell wrote the following last month:

Zimmer coaches [cornerbacks] as critically as any players on the Vikings, and if there were a contest held to determine his favorite position on the field the others would probably be fighting for second place.

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    Less than one week after a disgusting display in San Francisco, your Minnesota Vikings are back in Vikings territory for their home opener and first divisional matchup.

    The 2015 rookie class is getting even less exposure to life in the NFL this week, but our roster is relatively healthy outside of those already known to be out of action, like Phil Loadholt and John Sullivan.

    Austin Belisle has done a great job of explaining the importance Xavier Rhodes has in the outcome of this showdown and I’m looking forward to seeing him line up across from Calvin Johnson. Lindsey Young thinks stretching the field on offense could also be a key to a much-needed victory this week.

    Meanwhile, Brent LaBathe thinks we could see a much different version of Mike Zimmer’s defense this week given that Matt Stafford is far less mobile than Colin Kaepernick. I personally agree with Brent on that aspect and will be mightily disappointed if we don’t see marked improvement on defense this week.

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    A Sunday where Calvin Johnson catches just two passes seems odd, right? Kind of like a game where the Vikings fail to score an offensive touchdown or rush for more than 100 yards, no? But this is the NFL, where missed opportunities are forgotten and memories are just a thing of the past.

    The Vikings’ embarrassing loss to the 49ers? Mike Zimmer’s team is moving on. Calvin Johnson’s quiet, 4-target start? An anomaly, according to his Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi:

    “So, certainly he’s going to certainly get his touches this year, and I think that was an anomaly that we had this first game.”

    Johnson’s lack of touches began in 2014, when he played a shortened season because of injury (13 games) and was targeted just 128 times. That total, the second-lowest of his career, came just one season after Johnson caught 82 passes for 1,492 yards and scored 12 touchdowns. Though not physically diminished, Johnson’s decline can be attributed to the presence of Detroit’s other pass catchers, most notably Golden Tate.

    Last season, Tate caught 99 passes for 1,331 yards, scoring five touchdowns and quickly earning the trust of Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford. In Sunday’s game against the Chargers, Tate was targeted eight times, hauling in four catches for a pedestrian 24 yards. He’s a weapon in the slot, outside, and even in the return game, and Stafford relies on Tate once teams focus their attention on Johnson.

    Fortunately for Mike Zimmer, the Vikings may not need to devote extra players to Johnson this Sunday. Why? Enter Xavier Rhodes.

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    Earlier today, we discussed the biggest negatives from Monday’s loss to San Francisco in Part I of our QOTW segment. This time around, we’re weighing in on the silver linings we saw in Week 1. Feel free to take the poll and leave us comments with your own thoughts on the game!

    Brent: Anthony Barr
    I’d say the biggest positive was Anthony Barr, who led the defense with 12 total tackles, 10 of which were solo. Barr, who was limited the majority of the preseason, looked like the explosiveness from his rookie season was back in full.

    Lindsey: Xavier Rhodes
    As rough as the defense looked in general, I thought Xavier Rhodes had a great game. The CB looked strong against San Francisco, offering tight coverage and finishing the evening with seven tackles, all of them solo. Entering his third year in the NFL, Rhodes has big goals ahead of him, and I have no doubt he’ll have a solid 2015 season.

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