AnalysisPoll Of The Week

POLL: Player Of The Game

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The Minnesota Vikings had a nice team win on Sunday in St. Louis, but some players stood out more than others, and I want to know which Vikings player impressed you the most.  Here are your candidates for our Week One “Player of the Game” award.  Cast your vote at the bottom.

CORDARRELLE PATTERSON:  “Flash” made a huge impact as the game’s leading rusher (3 carries, 102 yards, 1 TD) and caught three of his five targets in the passing came (3 catches for 26 yards).  He also averaged 24 yards on his two kick return attempts.  His 67 yard touchdown run in the third quarter was pretty much when the Rams began to look defeated and withdrawn.

GREG JENNINGS:  Jennings led the Vikings pass catchers in the statistical categories of targets (7), catches (6), and yards (58).  He scored the first Vikings touchdown of 2014 on an eight yard pass from Matt Cassel.

LINVAL JOSEPH:  The impact of Joseph cannot really be described by statistics alone, but anyone paying attention the last few years can tell he is a clear upgrade at defensive tackle for the Vikings.  He ended up with five solo tackles and one sack.  Joseph led the pass defense to a respectable day where they limited the Rams to only 72 rushing yards (3.3 yards per attempt).

EVERSON GRIFFEN:  When your team is winning in the fourth quarter then back-to-back sacks, like Griffen had on Sunday, are a great way to prevent the other team from getting another life.  Griffen fresh late into the fourth quarter showed up big at a crucial moment.  He ended the day with three total tackles, including those two sacks.

JOSH ROBINSON:  Robinson was thought to be in Mike Zimmer’s doghouse, but if that was the case it shouldn’t be after Sunday’s performance.  According to PFF, Robinson was thrown at on only three occasions and gave up only one catch for seven yards.  He broke up another pass and, of course, accounted for the first interception of 2014 on a beautiful sideline grab.  As Brent pointed out, this pick allowed the Vikings to take positive momentum into halftime.

HARRISON SMITH:  Man, this guy is so much fun to watch.  Smith will be a major asset for this newly-aggressive defense and ended the day with two tackles, a beautiful sack on a blindside blitz, a defended pass, and an interception returned 81 yards for a touchdown.  The fourth quarter defensive score was not necessary to get the win, but after last season it sure is nice to see that killer instinct present in the fourth quarter.

BLAIR WALSH:  I’m not going to lie, but I was plenty worried about Walsh after his preseason misses.  He put those worries at ease for at least a week by having a great day in St. Louis.   Six of his seven kickoffs resulted in touchbacks and he also aced field goals from 46 and 52 yards early in the game.  A kicker can make a world of difference through the course of a football season, so here is hoping Walsh is going to be every bit as dependable as he was in Week One.

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Adam Warwas

Adam Warwas (Founder) has been writing about the Vikings for a total of eight years. Five of those years have been here at Vikings Territory where he continues to surround himself with enough talented individuals that people keep coming back. As proud as he is of what Vikings Territory has become, his real treasures are in his home... a beautiful wife and three amazing children (and a dog named Percy).

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  1. Had to go with Smith. Flashy had a few big plays but Smith’s sack was perfectly timed, he was all over the place and had a garage time pick 6. Patterson while outstanding only had 26 receiving yards which I’d like to see much higher. Both are close though.

  2. For one player…I’ll go with CP. The defense as a unit should get mention.
    Game ball is Zimmer’s.

  3. I chose Adrian. It seemed to me that the Rams sold out to stop him. Their focus to stop him allowed openings for Flashy on the sweeps. I’m unable to review the game, but It seemed to me the secondary and linebackers stayed near the line intent on stopping AD; helping open up the passing game for Cassel.

  4. I went with Joseph on this one. It has been far too long since we’ve had a strong run-stuffing presence in the middle of our line. It really made the entire defense better. With Griffen and Robison closing in on the sides, and Shariff and Joseph clogging up the middle, the Rams QB’s couldn’t handle the pressure. I will say that Patterson was fantastic, but it really was defense that made the game what it was. The offense was solid and efficient, but the Rams 11 penalties for 100+ yards is what really helped us. That defense was just amazing – and I’m directing a lot of thanks towards Linval.

  5. I really dig Harrison Smith. He’s such a big time player who seems to be every where on the field, plus he wears my favorite all-time players number, Paul Krause.
    But still, I went with Flash. That guy is special.

  6. Josh Robinson for flipping a complete 180 from last years train wreck of a season, also a Cris Carter Special on the sidelines for an interception, which led to Jennings’ own tip-toe catch. I have to mention Everson Griffen for pulling away from Harrison Smith near the end while on the pick-6. That guy is athletic as hell.

  7. Matt Cassell gets my vote. I can’t wait to see Teddy play, but Cassell played well against a ton of pressure. Norv’s game plan didn’t ask him to do much, but he did what was asked without making the big mistake. Had he lost one of the muffed snaps or thrown a pick, this might have been a very different game.

    1. Cassel did not play very good at all. Short passes. Long passes way off target. Every time there was a little pressure Cassel was inaccurate.

  8. I voted for CP, but I was surprised to not see Barr on the list. He looked tremendous in his first game and had some really key tackles. I’d be curious to see who everyone’s defensive player of the game was. Joseph, Barr, Robinson, and Smith all played really well.

  9. I went with other for Barr because most of us were a little bit let down the moment he got drafted, he wasn’t a sure thing, but he sure looked like a pro football player Sunday.

  10. I really really really wanted to give it to Harrison Smith, but that CP84 TD run was…. EPIC!

  11. CM1, that’s a good point. Patterson and Smith would probably be my top picks on offense and defense, but you could make a strong case for Barr. He was everywhere, and the hit he out on Austin Davis on the pick-6 crushed the poor kid’s will to live.

  12. Everyone has mentioned the guys I expected to do well.

    But one other guy who impressed me was Robert Blanton. He looked like he belonged there, and that was a surprise.

  13. Other….Gerald Hodges… He was all over the field and contained each gap and made every tackle.