Mark Craig's Five Extra Points

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG
  • Updated: December 29, 2013 - 11:07 PM

Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway and his youngest daughter, 3-year-old Beckett, shared a moment after the final game at the Metrodome on Sunday.

Photo: ELIZABETH FLORES • eflores@startribune.com,

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1. The downside of dumping the Dome

Financially, the Vikings couldn’t be happier dumping the Metrodome, which routinely pulled them down among the NFL’s revenue-producing bottom feeders. But let’s also not forget that the dome’s noise and claustrophobic quarters did help them rank among one of the league’s best teams at home the past 32 seasons. Even during a 5-10-1 season, the Vikings still won four straight at home to finish 4-3 there. Since 1982, when the Dome opened, the Vikings have had only four losing seasons at home. The only team with fewer losing seasons at home during that time is Pittsburgh (one). The Vikings finished with 161 regular-season wins at the Metrodome, seventh most in the NFL since 1982. Denver (181), Pittsburgh (174), and Green Bay (171) are the top three. Overall, the Vikings finished 167-92, including 6-4 in the postseason, at the Metrodome. “You can always count on us to play our best football in the Metrodome,” linebacker Chad Greenway said. “We hope that transfers outdoors next year. But, yeah, there is the question moving forward whether we can maintain this kind of home-field advantage. We hope we can.”

2. “All Day” can’t do it all by himself

The first running back selected in the 2007 NFL draft was Adrian Peterson (seventh overall). The last running back selected in the 2007 NFL draft was Ahmad Bradshaw (250th overall by the Giants). Guess which one is 8-1 in the postseason with two Super Bowl rings? Now guess which one’s team is 55-60-1, including 1-2 in the postseason, since it drafted him. Bradshaw, now with the Colts, had a solid career, but obviously is no Adrian Peterson. It’s just a reminder that a running back — even the greatest of his generation — can’t carry an NFL team by himself. Peterson, who missed his second game of the season because of injuries on Sunday, turns 29 on April 21. A great career is being wasted.

3. Sherels quietly sets punt return record

It’s fitting that Marcus Sherels was in someone else’s shadow when he set the team record for punt return average in a single season (15.2). While electric rookie Cordarrelle Patterson scored twice and capped his record-setting season for kickoff returns, Sherels quietly snaked his way up the left sideline on a 50-yard punt return to the 8-yard line to set up Patterson’s winning TD catch. “Just a `wall left’ call,” Sherels said. “The guys did a great job blocking it. They make my job easy.” Sherels had three returns for 77 yards, a 25.7-yard average that increased his season average from 13.6 to 15.2 on 22 returns. That broke the mark of 13.2 set by David Palmer in 1995 and was good for second place in the NFL behind Baltimore’s Tandon Doss (15.6).

4. Greenway ties Studwell’s streak

Playing with a fractured wrist for most of the season, Greenway still led the team in tackles for a sixth consecutive season. That ties former Vikings linebacker Scott Studwell’s team record (1980 to ’85). “It’s a credit to being available, to being active week in and week out,” said Greenway, whose five tackles gave him 163, 17 more than Erin Henderson. “I’ve played through injury. It takes a lot of work to get to that point. I’m proud of putting the uniform on 112 times in a row for this team.” Among Sunday’s active players, only Washington’s London Fletcher (256), who is retiring, and Detroit’s Stephen Tulloch (128) have played in more consecutive games. Greenway’s immediate concern, however, is getting his wrist taken care of. “We’re going to check it out and see what it looks like,” he said. “See what the hamburger meat looks like in there. It’s been a long year.”

5. Walsh gets no shot from 57

The Vikings passed on a 57-yard field goal attempt, choosing instead to punt while leading 7-0 in the second quarter. Perhaps a year ago, they would have let Blair Walsh attempt it. Walsh set the NFL record for most 50-yarders in a season when he went 10-for-10 as an All-Pro a year ago. But since then, Walsh has made just two of five attempts from 50 or longer. That includes three consecutive misses since the fifth game of the season. Walsh made his first two, from 52 and 54 yards, but then was wide left from 55 and 57 yards, and short from 53.

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San Francisco 2 Bottom 6th Inning
Kansas City 3
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
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NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
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Cleveland
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Pittsburgh
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New Orleans
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Dallas
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Boston 100
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LA Lakers 14
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Washington 1 2nd Prd
Edmonton 1
Buffalo 9:30 PM
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Louisiana 55
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(18) East Carolina
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California
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Rice
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(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
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Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
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UCF
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Washington St
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

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