Crazy Stat Shows How Bad Last Year’s Defense Was

Dec 20, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer looks on in the second half against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

We all knew things got bad on defense. Perhaps the most discouraging part of the situation rested in the fact that the Minnesota Vikings defense was routinely beat at the end of each half. Well, now we have a statistic to show just how bad things were:

Like anyone else who watched, I could have told you that the defense was dreadful in these situations. Nevertheless, I couldn’t have told you just how horrendously awful things were.

The above highlight was just the beginning. I remember thinking that it was a rough performance from a defense that was going to be good against a team that was going to be bad. How wrong I was. The Bengals came really close to winning the Super Bowl. The Minnesota Vikings defense would only go downhill.

Climbing back into NFL average last season would have required the Vikings to almost be three-times as good at the end of each half. It’s a startling number, especially given Zim’s expertise on that side of the ball.

Plus, the numbers suggest that the Vikings were the worst in this area since the turn of the millennium. All things considered, the 2000s are still quite young, and yet there has been a lot of football played. Last season’s Vikings defense was historically bad.

Ed Donatell is the man most responsible for turning things around. Jordan Hicks, Chandon Sullivan, Harrison Phillips, and Za’Darius Smith have been the main additions. One could certainly make the case that more needs to be done, that another pass rusher would make a sizeable difference. It’d also be good to see the Vikings add another corner to their defense, thereby allowing Minnesota to have a more robust competition for the top 3. Regardless, this group needs to be better.

The combination of increased talent alongside a new scheme can hopefully fix the end of half defense. If that doesn’t occur, Vikings fans will experience another long season.

Editor’s Note: This piece was originally published on Purple PTSD.

K.J. Osborn and Chad Beebe

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