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Continued: Vikings have four areas to fix — and they must do it quickly

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Last update: October 15, 2013 - 10:19 AM

3. Too many blades of grass

Anyone have a number for Pat Williams? Remember when the Williams Wall — Pat and Kevin — anchored the best run defense in the NFL?

The Vikings used to be so stout against the run that their motto was “blade of grass.” Give them a blade of grass and they could defend it.

The Vikings became the first team since the 1970 merger to lead the NFL in rushing defense three consecutive seasons (2006-08). They ranked second in 2009.

And now? They rank 17th in rush defense after finishing 22nd in each of the two previous seasons.

The Vikings once prided themselves on being able to make teams one-dimensional and thus predictable. But their inability to stuff the run puts even more pressure on their beleaguered secondary.

“When you can’t stop the run and you can’t stop the pass, what can you stop, right?” Allen said.

4. Blocking breakdown

The offensive line was expected to be an area of strength this season, but that group’s performance has fluctuated week to week. The entire offense revolves around Adrian Peterson’s running and the line’s ability to open holes and clear lanes for him.

Peterson is averaging 96.6 yards rushing per game and 4.7 yards per carry. Those numbers are pretty similar to his career averages.

But of Peterson’s 102 carries this season, 21 have resulted in zero or negative yardage. That puts the offense in unfavorable situations on second and third down.

Opponents will continue to commit extra defenders to stop Peterson so the Vikings must be able to control the line of scrimmage for their offense to properly function.



 

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Miami - LP: M. Dunn 1 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: D. Carpenter 3
Arizona - WP: T. Cahill 7 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: P. Strop 5
San Francisco - WP: J. Machi 12 FINAL
Colorado - LP: C. Bettis 10
Texas - WP: M. Perez 3 FINAL
Oakland - LP: S. Gray 0
Houston - LP: J. Fields 3 FINAL
Seattle - WP: F. Rodney 5
Cincinnati - WP: A. Simon 5 FINAL
Pittsburgh - LP: C. Morton 2
LA Angels - LP: E. Frieri 4 FINAL
Washington - WP: D. Storen 5
Kansas City - LP: K. Herrera 3 FINAL
Cleveland - WP: B. Shaw 5
Baltimore - WP: C. Tillman 10 FINAL
Toronto - LP: T. Redmond 8
Chicago WSox - WP: A. Rienzo 6 FINAL
Detroit - LP: E. Reed 4
St. Louis - LP: M. Wacha 2 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: J. Niese 3
Minnesota - WP: C. Fien 6 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: J. Lueke 4
NY Yankees - LP: M. Pineda 1 FINAL
Boston - WP: J. Lackey 5
San Diego - LP: T. Ross 2 FINAL
Milwaukee - WP: K. Lohse 5
Philadelphia - LP: C. Hamels 2 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: Z. Greinke 5
Charlotte 97 FINAL
Miami 101
Dallas 113 FINAL
San Antonio 92
Portland 112 FINAL
Houston 105
Pittsburgh 3 FINAL(OT)
Columbus 4
Anaheim 2 FINAL
Dallas 4
St. Louis 3 FINAL(OT)
Chicago 4
Houston 0 FINAL
Red Bull New York 4
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2013 preseason     
Aug 9 - vs. Houston 7 pmX27-13
Aug 16 - at Buffalo 6 pmX20-16
Aug 25 - at San Francisco 7 pmX34-14
Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee 7 pmX24-23
2013 regular season     
Sep 8 - at Detroit NoonX34-24
Sep 15 - at Chicago NoonX31-30
Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland NoonX31-27
Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London) NoonX34-27
Oct 6 - Bye
Oct 13 - vs. Carolina NoonX35-10
Oct 21 - at. NY Giants 7:40 pmX23-7
Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay 7:30 pmX44-31
Nov 3 - at Dallas NoonX27-23
Nov 7 - vs. Washington 7:25 pmX34-27
Nov 17 - at Seattle 3:25 pmX41-20
Nov. 24 - at Green Bay Noon26-26
Dec 1 - vs. Chicago NoonX23-20
Dec 8 - at Baltimore NoonX29-26
Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia NoonX48-30
Dec 22 - at Cincinnati NoonX42-14
Dec 29 - vs. Detroit NoonX14-13

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