Recent content from Mark Craig
Mike Zimmer was asked whether there was much drop off between Dalvin Cook, the best back in football, and Alexander Mattison, who ran the ball for a game-high 6.5-yard average vs. the Cowboys. Answer? "No."
Instead of settling for an easy field goal and a 23-21 lead entering the fourth quarter, coach Mike Zimmer made the hard decision and was rewarded with a Dalvin Cook touchdown
Kirk Cousins was pressured on eight of his 22 first-half dropbacks (36.3%), but he managed to complete passes on five of them for 53 yards and a couple of first downs.
In Wednesday's tale of two Purple hamstrings, Adam Thielen spent practice resting while fellow receiver Josh Doctson continued testing -- and said he'll be ready for Sunday night in Dallas.
The NFC has nine teams with a winning record, and any one of them -- including the Vikings -- could advance to the Super Bowl.
Five takeaways from Sunday's Vikings loss in Kansas City from NFL writer Mark Craig.
The punting Colquitt brothers face each other Sunday when the Vikings travel to face the Chiefs. "When people ask [their Mom] who she's rooting for, she'll just smile and say, 'I'm rooting for fourth down!'"
Mike Zimmer, 63, is the old-school but innovative defensive guy whose aggressive style impresses 61-year-old Andy Reid, who has built a reputation for the way his teams play on offense.
Dalvin Cook continues to shine in all facets of the game. After Thursday he has a league-leading 823 rushing yards and 1,116 yards from scrimmage.
Adrian Peterson, who said Tuesday he is "for sure" playing Thursday on his nicked-up ankle when Washington visits the Vikings, is "looking like the same old Adrian that we all know," Redskins coach Bill Callahan said.
Team alumni feel more welcome, more appreciated and more involved since Zygi and Mark Wilf bought the team in 2005. "I hadn't been back in 20 years," one former player said.
Five takeaways from Sunday's game from Vikings writer Mark Craig.
Detroit, the Vikings' next opponent, is the latest victim of scrutinized officiating that has the league in turmoil.
The Vikings are averaging 6.3 yards per play through six games in 2019, good for third in the NFL and a reminder of the Randy Moss era of big plays.
Here's what stood out Sunday afternoon to Star Tribune NFL and Vikings writer Mark Craig.
Through highs and lows as Vikings kicker, Dan Bailey is still all about the routine. "There's nothing really too complicated about it," he said.
Mark Craig's On the NFL: Workhorse running backs Dalvin Cook and Christian McCaffrey are on pace to easily exceed 2,000 yards from scrimmage this season.
The Vikings got back to form with Sunday's win. Here's what stood out to reporter Mark Craig.
Danielle Hunter tied Eric Kendricks with a team-high seven tackles while posting two key red-zone sacks that broke the Giants' will during a clock-grinding third quarter that yielded just three points.
Kirk Cousins, the Vikings' $84 million quarterback, is getting nowhere trying to please everybody. "I would say he's scared of making a mistake," ESPN analyst Dan Orlovsky said.
Stefon Diggs practices Friday, but coach Mike Zimmer wouldn't commit to playing him against the Giants in New Jersey on Sunday. "We'll see," Zimmer said.
If the Vikings are frustrated with what they're seeing and hearing in the media about Kirk Cousins' quarterback play, they'd be wise to avoid his standing in social media.
Of the many rules in the NFL, the smartest and toughest one to obey might be the so-called "24-hour rule" of forgetting about your last game, no matter how good or bad you played.
Welcome to 2019. The Year of the Yellow Flag. Make a play, hold your breath and scan the field for laundry.
Five takeaways from Sunday's game at Soldier Field.
This will be Dozier's second start in three games. He stepped in for injured left guard Pat Elflein in the Week 2 loss at Green Bay.
The return of Marcus Sherels and Laquon Treadwell created quite the juxtaposition of Purple-clad reunions at TCO Performance Center on Wednesday.
Kirk Cousins threw only four passes for more than 20 yards, but three of them were important.
Sunday's halftime celebration was nice, but the best tribute to the 1969 Vikings came early in the second quarter when a visiting quarterback got spooked by their 2019 counterparts.
The Ed Thorp Trophy never quite made it to Minnesota, the last NFL champion before the merger with the AFL.
After the bad day in Green Bay that led to his release last season, kicker Daniel Carlson returns to U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday having done very well with his new team.
It's hard to imagine NFL officiating getting more frustrating than it was in Week 2, lending more credence to football followers who suggest the league is in danger of becoming unwatchable.
Mark Craig weighs in with his five takeaways from Sunday's game at Lambeau Field.
After an apparent Stefon Diggs touchdown, Dalvin Cook was called for offensive pass interference following a long look at the replay.
Vikings special teams coordinator Marwan Maalouf has mixed lessons learned at five NFL stops — some of them hard.
The Vikings and Packers head into Sunday's game at Lambeau Field well aware they'll need other ways to win besides what got them through Week 1 unscathed.
1. Joseph returns as unique inside forceGive Vikings nose tackle Linval Joseph an assist on Anthony Harris' second interception in Sunday's 28-12 win over the…
Coordinator Marwan Maalouf introduced the play Wednesday. Linebacker Eric Wilson completed it Sunday.
NFL writer Mark Craig says taking a flier on Antonio Brown and his baggage is a lose-lose for accountability
When officials make (or don't make) a call, the league starts tweaking
Zone blocking requires precise timing, technique. The intricacies are many and minute.
Sometimes decisions go sideways and the pressure to win is relentless, but coach Mike Zimmer stands by his record entering his sixth season leading the Vikings..
Testimonials from aides back Zimmer's old-school strategy.
Langer, who ended his 12-year career with the Vikings in 1980 and 1981, was a four-time first-team All-Pro and two-time Super Bowl winner.
Coach Mike Zimmer put his young roster bubble position players on notice, telling them publicly that it was time to "get their rear ends in gear" on special teams.
The second-year cornerback will miss the season's first eight games because of drug suspensions, leaving his team scrambling to fill in behind him.
Kyle Sloter's quarterback rating is excellent in the preseason, but coach Mike Zimmer was quick to warn people not to read too much into the data.
Laquon Treadwell knows exactly where his career stands with NFL cutdown day looming just 11 days away. It's not in a good place.
A proposed union would stand up for players whose stars shine brightly, but briefly.
Vikings players have a choice of 34 different helmet models that have been certified for use in the NFL. Players have a variety of reasons for their preferences.
One of the tallest — if not the tallest — Vikings in team history took his spot as the third-string left tackle during Sunday's practice at TCO Performance Center.
No one was permitted to comment on the trade with Baltimore until Monday.
Asked before practice about the many young receivers fighting for roster spots behind starters Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, Olabisi Johnson was the first one coach Mike Zimmer patted on the back.
In the wake of the egregious pass interference no-call in the NFC Championship Game, NFL owners voted 31-1 to expand replay reviews to include offensive and defensive pass interference calls and non-calls.
Offensive tackle Aviante Collins missed all of last season after surgery to repair a torn biceps.
It's a matter the players love to argue and one that remains unsettled. But cornerback Trae Waynes made a pretty good case for himself in a fast-paced interview at training camp.
How do the Vikings monitor all of the different personal trainers and encourage players not to stray too far from the team's training principles? Communication, and then some.
With 209 days to reflect, a chance to start over is welcomed by the Vikings after a lackluster ending to the 2018 season.
With Holton Hill now suspended for the season's first eight games, the Vikings need another cornerback to step up and provide depth on the 53-man roster.
Vikings rookie Tiano Pupungatoa, of Hastings, consumes roughly 5,000 calories a day to maintain playing weight.
Minnesota's first regular tour stop in half a century didn't need the world's No. 1 player, Brooks Koepka, to make it for a successful return. It was well served by the youthful golfers who battled for the lead all weekend.
South African Dylan Frittelli, at 12 under, is three shots off the lead after getting a friendly roll.
Family and friends of Tim Herron rode to the 3M Open in style, even if they got there a little late for the Wayzata golfer's round.
A sponsor's exemption to Matthew Wolff, the Oklahoma State Cowboy with the 2019 NCAA title belt, an ear-blasting driver and a PGA Tour dream that pushed him to turn pro last month after his sophomore season.
Mark Craig's Golf Insider: Apple Valley native Brian Dwyer grabs the last 3M Open slot by shooting a 64 -- but not before he has to fret it wouldn't be good enough and go through the pressure of three sudden-death playoff holes.
Hannah Green sighed after a save on what proved to be the course's hardest hole.
Hole 16 was shortened by 140 yards from the first two rounds and played as the third-easiest hole. It surrendered no eagles, but the 29 birdies matched the total from the first two rounds combined.
The Maple Grove golfer realizes a dream after slipping into tournament by a mere $3.
Side contest adds layer of pressure and temptation.
Inbee Park, seven-time major champion and LPGA Tour Hall of Famer, was a winless teenager the last time the world sent its finest women's golfers to Minnesota.
At 55, Laura Davies will be making her 125th start in a major come Thursday in the KPMG Women's PGA Championship.
Park, who was 19 when she won the 2008 U.S. Women's Open at Interlachen in Edina, has seven wins and 28 top-10 finishes in the five majors in women's golf. Here's a closer look:
Look out for Jordan Taylor -- quarterback Kirk Cousins calls him "a diamond in the rough" -- as the Vikings continue searching for a reliable No. 3 receiver.
Mar'Sean Diggs might not be as fast as his brother Stefon, but the two share a lot of the same traits, including good hands.
Jake Browning sounds awfully happy for a guy who set national high school and major college passing records only to be criticized for a…