A few of us — probably more — are on record as identifying the offensive line as the creaky upstairs floorboard that could potentially be the one responsible if the Vikings’ high expectations come crashing through the ceiling and end up in the downstairs toilet.
On Monday, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer was asked if he agrees with our armchair analysis that the O-line is concern numero uno.
“I have lots of concerns,” Zimmer said. “I am concerned [about], ‘Can cover the pass the right way? ‘Can we rush the quarterback the right way,’ Can we stop the run on defense?’
“Those situations all come throughout the course of this season and throughout 16 games. There is always going to be some things that don’t go as good as you want and you’ve got to try and fix it and get it better. Our expectation level is the guys that are on the field need to go play. I’ve been doing this a long, long time and I know that a lot of times when guys get opportunities – a guy like T.J. Clemmings or Eric Kendricks – these guys get in there, we’re talking about [Gerald] Hodges, these guys perform and the better they perform, the longer they get to stay.”
Zimmer also talked about pushing the offensive line harder this summer when it came to emphasizing pass protection, which is just a tad important in this league.
“Yes, much, much harder,” he said. “It was a point of emphasis that we had to get better at.”
Turner then singled out left tackle Matt Kalil as a player who has impressed him this preseason.
“Actually, throughout the preaseason, Kalil has had a really good preseason,” Zimmer said. “He’s blocked his guys all the time. I think he got beat one time on a spin move or something, but for the most part, Matt has really improved.”