Every week send any Vikings-related questions to @Andrew_Krammer and I’ll answer them here on Fridays.
compare current O-Line to last years over the first few games
— Kevanyon (@Kevanyon) September 26, 2017
A: The end of the first drive against the Buccaneers may be the best example: a goal-line touchdown. Dalvin Cook made an impressive leap over Pat Elflein and Nick Easton for the 1-yard score, but the key was Cook going untouched until his feet left the turf. That’s compared to last year, when the Vikings ranked 31st in points per red-zone trip, according to Football Outsiders. The pass protection, tested with two starting quarterbacks already, has also been much improved. The Vikings have only allowed three sacks on Sam Bradford and Case Keenum, which are the second-fewest in the league so far (as the offense ranks fifth in 20-yard pass plays.) And, until Mike Remmers missed practice Thursday due to an illness, not one offensive lineman had appeared on an injury report. That’s especially critical at left tackle, where Riley Reiff has largely eased the Vikings’ pain and will face his old team, the Lions, on Sunday.
Lotta talk how comfortable Keenums been vs Bucs. He even said so in interview. Any particulars on why so exclusively savage vs them?
— josh anderson (@thefutureinHD) September 27, 2017
A: Keenum’s pocket presence was much improved from his first start in Pittsburgh, when a handful of pressures and a sack could be attributed to him flushing the pocket too early. Trust was a big topic in the week leading up to the Buccaneers game and you saw a steadier hand from Keenum. He simply made some good throws, too, including the 45-yard strike to Adam Thielen on his first pass of the game. Coaches credited Keenum’s full week of practice with the starting offense, which he’s again getting this week ahead of Sunday’s game vs. the Lions.
What happened to Danielle hunter?
— Nick Ross (@NickRoss518) September 26, 2017
A: He is getting noticed now after 12.5 sacks last season. Hunter got the No. 1 pass rusher treatment from Tampa Bay last week. By my count, he saw 11 chips or double teams by a Buccaneers running back or tight end on 28 pass-rush snaps. Add the occasional Tampa Bay screen, Vikings zone drop or twist and there were just a small handful of true one-on-one opportunities for Hunter on Sunday. That said, he’s just in his fourth week as a full-time starter and there were plays he looked gassed, like the 25-yard touchdown throw from Jameis Winston in the final play of the third quarter.
As the season continues what are he chances Murray gets traded for a draft pick or player? Now that Cook appears to pan out and Jet as RB2
— Cole Ludolph (@Cole_Ludolph) September 26, 2017
A: What’s Murray’s value? Running backs seem to pop up from all avenues with late-round picks and undrafted guys surprising teams with high-end production. The right offer is always a possibility, but at this point Murray’s top value is being an injury away from contributing for the Vikings. That’s probably not what the Vikings had in mind when signing him to a three-year, $15 million deal in March, but that was before they traded up for Dalvin Cook, who is now second in the league with 288 rushing yards.
Any chance Murray is cut when Floyd is reinstated? If not him, who?
— Josh Henig (@josh_henig) September 26, 2017
A: I don’t see the Vikings keeping seven receivers on the 53-man roster once Michael Floyd is reinstated from his suspension on Monday. So that means one of the rookies, Rodney Adams or Stacy Coley, could be the odd man out. Coley was active for one game, while Adams, a fifth-round pick, has yet to be activated in three weeks.
How concerned are the coaches and management with our cbs not named Rhodes or newman
— Anthony Sinnen (@ASinnen) September 27, 2017
A: Terence Newman embracing another shift in his remarkable career, becoming the Vikings’ primary slot corner at age 39, should tell you all you need to know about how they felt about second-year corner Mackensie Alexander. Akin to Trae Waynes’ path, they’ll develop Alexander in bursts. He continues to rotate into the mix with injuries also putting him on the field more in the first three weeks. Alexander has played 88 snaps to Newman’s 117 so far. Waynes atoned for a rough start to the season with his interception off a poorly thrown Winston pass on Sunday. He could use more of those. Waynes still leads Vikings players in penalty yardage (49) off the one pass interference play in Pittsburgh.