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Predicting the Minnesota Vikings 2018 Record

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By: Tanishka Mhaskar
April 22nd,  2018
Photo: facebook.com

After a brutal loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC Championship, it is safe to say that the Minnesota Vikings were one of the biggest winners in free agency
note: this is just a prediction

The Vikings signed the 'unicorn' of free agency in quarterback Kirk Cousins and made a splash on the defensive side of the ball with defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson. Due to the brilliant work of GM Rick Spielman, Minnesota has almost no excuses next year. VKNT will take you through a game by game analysis of what to expect for each game and a prediction of the Vikings record. 

Week 1:
vs San Francisco 49ers 
Sunday September 9th, 1 PM EST
Game 1 includes a battle between two of the highest paid quarterbacks, 2 shutdown corners, and the return of former Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon. It should be quite an interesting battle between Adam Thielen and Richard Sherman. But it all comes down to defense and the Vikings defense has only allowed 12.5 points per game at home. A stronger offense, the shutdown defense and the crowd noise will hand Jimmy Garoppolo his first loss as a NFL starter.
Score Prediction: 29-19
Record: 1-0

Week 2:

at Green Bay Packers
Sunday September 16th, 1 PM EST
The two games vs the Packers are highly anticipated and should set the stage for the division title. The Vikes travel to Green Bay early this season to take on a revengeful Aaron Rodgers in an interesting matchup. The Packers defense is quite an improvement from last year with the signing of DT Muhammad Wilkerson and TE Jimmy Graham on the offense. Although the game will be close, Green Bay pulls off the win. 
Score Prediction: 24-23
Record: 1-1

Week 3: 
vs Buffalo Bills 
Sunday September 23rd, 1 PM EST
The Vikings defense take on an offense that was ranked 29th in the league last season and have done almost no huge offensive signings to make themselves better. There is a chance they will face their first rookie QB of the season. Likewise, this should be a breeze at home, with the crowd helping them along. 
Score Prediction: 42- 10
Record: 2-1

Week 4:
at Los Angeles Rams
Thursday September 27th, 8:20 PM EST
The Vikings play their 1st primetime game with QB Kirk Cousins. This one of their first real tests of the season. I can see a win here if they execute and don't turn the ball over. This game is very important because it has a lot at stake when it comes to playoff seeding. Luckily the Vikings have 2 of the top 5 receivers last season in conquested catches. This should be important going against the Rams' newly acquired CBs Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib. The offensive line will also have to step up this game going against one of the best DLs in the league in Ndamukong Suh and Aaron Donald. The Vikings have signed OGs Tom Compton and re-signed OG Nick Easton. The draft is coming up early this week to solidify the positions even more but the Vikings fall to the Rams.
Score Prediction: 21-17
Record: 2-2

Week 5:y

at Philadelphia Eagles
Sunday October 7th, 4:20 PM EST
Playing on the road can be tough enough, but playing the Super Bowl champions is even harder. It can be a it easier if you are the Minnesota Vikings, hungry to get revenge on the team that ripped out their dreams of playing a home game in Super Bowl 52. Add on top of that Kirk Cousins, who was division rival of the Eagles. I'm expecting the Vikings to play with some kind of intensity never seen before. They get 10 days between the Rams and the Eagles so they will be well rested and the defense, hungrier. They will win a very hard fought game by a clutch field goal by Kai Forbath. 
Score Prediction: 27-24
Record: 3-2

Week 6:
vs Arizona Cardinals
Sunday October 14th, 1 PM EST
The Vikings head back home after 2 tough weeks on the road. The win and loss should really shape the playoff picture. This week they meet former friend, now foe, QB Sam Bradford. The Cardinals re much improved from last year with the return of RB David Johnson and the addition of S Tyrann Mathieu. After a pair of interceptions by Cousins, the exhausted offense can't get back on their feet and the Vikings defense is tired from the previous weeks. Bradford gets revenge on the Vikings in a tough loss. 
Score Prediction: 27-18
Record: 3-3

Week 7:
at New York Jets
Sunday October 21st, 1 PM EST
As of right now it is hard to say who the starting QB for the Jets will be but I feel like they will give Teddy Bridgewater a chance to get revenge on his old team. Bridgewater will play well but doesn't have the weapons or defense to even stand a chance against the Vikings top 10 offense and defense. 
Score Prediction: 33-14 
Record: 4-3

Week 8: 
vs New Orleans Saints
Sunday October 28th, 8:20 PM EST
This prime time game will be one on everyone's radar. Not only are these 2 teams Super Bowl contenders but the last time they met lead to a historical playoff walk off TD. The Saints certainly want revenge. I'm sure their DBs have worked on timing when it comes to tackling. This will be a hard fought game but the Saints just come in with more fire. Kirk Cousins lights up the offense but the lack of CB depth just burns the Vikings.
Score Prediction: 38-30
Record: 4-4

Week 9: 
vs Detroit Lions
Sunday November 4th, 1 PM EST
The Vikings offense faces a revamped Lions defense at home. The offense has been on fire the last few games and the defense plays up to their usual caliber. The Vikings have their most efficient game of the season and play with no error.
Score Prediction: 24-16
Record: 5-4

Week 10: BYE week

Week 11:
at Chicago Bears
Sunday November 18th, 1 PM EST
The Vikings always have trouble playing at Soldier Field. Maybe it is the wind, or maybe it is the loud fans. Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky has a lot more weapons than last season with the additions of TE Trey Burton and WRs Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel. The Bears offense should stand much more of a chance against the best defense in the league but it still wont be enough to pull an upset. 
Score Prediction: 29-24
Record: 6-4

Week 12:
vs Green Bay Packers
Sunday November 25th, 8:20 PM EST
The biggest rivals of the Minnesota Vikings come to town as Rodgers probably still wants more revenge but the Vikes do too now. If they lose this game against the Packers, they will lose the division. This home game is a must win for the Minnesota Vikings. With the crowd backing them up and Kirk Cousins playing better every week the Vikings are able to take the dub on Sunday Night Football. 
Score Prediction: 38-24
Record: 7-4

Week 13:
at New England Patriots
Sunday December 2nd, 4:25 PM EST
This is one of the most anticipated games of the season for Vikings fans. The Patriots have lost quite a few key players this offseason in WRs Brandin Cooks and Danny Amendola, OT Nate Solder, CB Malcolm Butler, and the unsure return of TE Rob Gronkowski. The Pats should still be a very dominant team but Tom Brady is aging, and it is unclear if Belichick can manage drafting players to cover up for all of the starters that left. The Vikings get a last minute punt return TD by Marcus Sherels to win the game. 
Score Prediction: 27-20
Record: 8-4

Week 14:
at Seattle Seahawks
Monday December 10th, 8:15 PM EST
The Vikings final prime time game comes in one of the loudest stadiums in the NFL. The Vikings will be able to handle the noise, but not play their best game of the season. The Seahawks have lost most of their key offensive and defensive players this offseason and haven't done much to bolster their roster. They do have the draft but replacing a surplus of players less than 10 draft picks is tough. The Vikings dominate in Seattle on Monday night. 
Score Prediction: 23-14
Record: 9-4

Week 15:
vs Miami Dolphins
Sunday December 16th, 1 PM EST
The Vikings head home to play the Miami Dolphins. This was a tough one for me to predict because it is still not clear who the Dolphins QB will be next season. Regardless, the Dolphins have lost their WR1 Jarvis Landry and star DT Ndamukong Suh. They will be an easy match up for the Vikings and they will take the clear win. 
Score Prediction: 45-17
Record: 10-4

Week 16:
at Detroit Lions
Sunday December 23rd, 1 PM EST
The Vikes will travel to Ford Field for their last road game of the regular season. This divisional match-up is key to making sure that the Vikings become Kings of the North. This game ends up being a low scoring battle of both defenses and it's extremely tough to beat Mike Zimmer's prized defense and the Vikings take yet another win. 
Score Prediction: 17-9
Record: 11-4

Week 17:
vs Chicago Bears
Sunday December 30th, 1 PM EST
Another week, another division battle. The final week of the regular season is always a surplus of divisional battles. The Vikings get to close it out at home, similar to last season. Mitchell Trubisky and the Bears have been one of the most improved teams this season and Trubisky has showed tons of improvement. The Bears defense has lost most of their games for them this season and the same thing occurs at U.S. Bank Stadium. Kirk Cousins plays impressively throwing 5 touchdowns and the defense closes out the regular season with a win. 
Score Prediction: 26-20
Record: 12-4

This whole article is simply one fans prediction and there is no guarantee that a single one of these things happen but this was a very fun project for me. Regardless, it is safe to say that the Minnesota Vikings make the playoffs in 2019. This will be a fun season with new QB Kirk Cousins at helm. 

SKOL
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Nick Easton signs tender

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By: Jamie Harmer
Published 4/17/18
Photo: Vikings.com 

Vikings guard Nick Easton signed his tender Monday, worth $2.914 million dollars. The Vikings may look at Easton as the future guard going forward. Easton started 12 games in '17 before suffering an ankle injury. At just 26 years old, Easton could be looking at receiving a long term deal from the Vikings passed the 2018 season. The team will definitely look for offensive line help in this year's draft after starter Joe Berger called it a career, and the departure of Jerimiah Sirles.

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Eric Kendricks earns extension

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By: Jamie Harmer
Published 4/16/18
Photo: Alex Dorner



You can check Eric Kendricks off the list of 2015 draft class extensions. Kendricks and the Vikings agreed to terms on a five year, 50 million dollar deal with 25 million of it guaranteed. 22.5 million of the guaranteed money will pay out in the first two years.

The second round pick out of UCLA has been a constant contributor since his rookie year. Leading the team in tackles, always being around the ball, Kendricks has earned his payday no doubt. He has shown steady progression over the years, and I think his best are still to come.

The Vikings have expressed multiple times about keeping their core players, and this extension backs up their words. You can almost guarantee there will be another former UCLA Linebacker receiving an extension before week 1.
SKOL!
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Beyond the starting four

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By: Jamie Harmer
Published: 4/15/18
Photo: Alex Dorner 


The Vikings head into the '18 season facing depth issues on the defensive line. In '17, the team started out strong up front, but faded towards the end of the season. This led to a complete collapse in the playoffs. I took a closer look at what lead to the d-line fading down the stretch. The numbers below represent the snap count by individual players in '17.
Griffen: 790
Hunter: 772
T. Johnson: 673
Joseph: 663
Robison: 562
Stephen: 384
Weatherly: 90
J.Johnson: 41
Bower: 10
As you can clearly see, the starting defensive ends had very little rotation. Robison was used as a hybrid between DE/DT. (Note: Griffen did play with plantar fasciitis from the mid way point of the season.)
When your scheme calls for the teams front four to rush the QB on every down, it's imperative that you're able to rotate.  The old saying "keeping fresh legs in the fourth" is 100 percent accurate. Basically, the team ran out of gas up front around week 15, and were cashed come playoff time. The main reason I feel this happened was do to coach Zimmer not trusting his depth or lack of at the position.
Let's step back into the now, and see what the current roster looks like.

The team has eleven players at the d-line positions. Of course not all these players will be on the active 53 or even the practice squad by the start of the season, but as of right now this is what they have. The Vikings lost two contributors from last year's team. Tom Johnson(starter) and Shamar Stephen. The addition of Sheldon Richardson gives Zimmer his coveted three tech he's been missing. Richardson can and will change how teams protect their QB when facing the Vikes in '18. The combination of Richardson and Joseph all wrapped up in a Zimmer 4-3 is lethal. I, myself think that Joseph is the best pure Nose tackle in the game.(feel free to fight me on it.) With Joseph's ability to gobble up blocks, and his use of gap control, it will give Richardson one on one looks.(R.I.P. QB)
Let's bounce outside, and talk defensive end now. Griffen and Hunter will be the main guys again this year. Griffen ended up with a team high 13 sacks last year.(most of which came before week 10) Fans say Hunter's numbers dropped off, but what I seen was a more complete player. Hunter was much more effective against the run in '17. He sealed off the edge well, and wasn't as quick to over run a play. So basically the starting front four will be a nasty group, but what about depth? As much as I hate to say it, the Eagles were able to dominate teams by keeping their guys fresh. In '18, the Vikes will need to do the same to keep from having a gassed d-line.
It all comes back to having quality depth, so you can keep fresh legs using effective rotation. The key word here is effective. Looking at who the Vikes have now, I'd like to see Bower and Johnson take a step forward in '18. Bower is raw, he's a rush end through and through. Under the guidance of DL coach Patterson, I think Bower could become a solid go to, spelling Griffen when needed. I'm still a big fan of Brian Robison, and think he can still get to the QB if used in limited rotation with Hunter.
Now it's time to see how the Vikes can keep the middle of the d-line fresh. As I mentioned earlier, the Vikes lost two defensive tackles. Jaleel Johnson has potential to be a very disruptive player, and maybe used to spell Richardson at the three tech spot in '18. Who will give big Linval a rest though? Glad you asked. For depth help, I think the Vikings look toward the draft. One player that I would love to see the Vikes pick is NC State's DT B.J. Hill. Hill's playing style is a bit like Joseph's. He shows great gap control, and has pop at the point of attack. Like all rookies coming into a complex defense, he will have hiccups, but I feel Hill could see the field as a rookie. If he's there in the 3rd, I think the Vikes need to pull the trigger.
Building a dominant defensive line is more than four players, it's a combination of depth by using effective rotation. Being able to keep the legs fresh without a drop off in on field production is the end goal.  Can the Vikings keep the pressure coming for 16 plus? Only time will tell.


Images courtesy of Vikings.com
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An Original: Grady Alderman

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By: Jamie Harmer
Published: 4/7/18
Photo: Vikings.com

In the 1961 expansion draft, the Minnesota Vikings acquired Left Tackle Grady Alderman. The undersized Alderman would be the teams first Blindside tackle in franchise history, and what a first it would be!
Alderman played in a 194 regular season games for the Vikes, adding 12 more for post season appearances. Played in three Super Bowls, earned six Pro Bowls, and eventually would be named a 50 greatest Viking in 2010.

"Grady Alderman was the first player I met at training camp in Bemidji," Tarkenton said. "He and Mick Tingelhoff went on to be the very best of friends and stayed that way. Grady played left tackle for us and he was everything you would want in a player. He was smart, had great talent and was a team-first guy.
"Those early Vikings teams had a foundation on the offensive and defensive lines - they were Grady Alderman and Jim Marshall," Tarkenton added.
"Those two men are how this franchise was built. Grady was a man of integrity, smart, kind and generous. He was the best guy you could ever be around."   -Vikings.com

Alderman spent from '61-'74 with the Vikings. In '75, after a training camp with the Bears, Alderman took a broadcasting position with WCCO radio calling Vikings games for 4 seasons.
His impact on Vikings history reaches outside of the field of play. Alderman played a major role in overseeing the construction of Winter park, and helping to get the funding for the building of the HHH Metrodome.
Grady Alderman passed away April 5th, 2018. He was 79. 

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Tavarres King joins the Vi (King) s

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By: Tanishka Mhaskar
April 5th, 2018
Photo: cover32.com

Vikings Sign Former Giants WR Tavarres King

Drafted in the 5th round, 161st overall pick, Tavarres King has been a bit of a journeyman. He has spent time with 4 different NFL teams before coming to Minnesota. Throughout his career King has started 3 games and appeared in 17. 

King started all 3 games last season for an injury-riddled Giants team but he has shown that when he is given a chance, he can produce. King finished the 2017 season with 18 receptions for 240 yards and 3 touchdowns. 

It is also relieving to know that King has appeared in one playoff game. Although he was WR6 for the Giants in the 2016 season, King managed to log in 3 receptions for 73 yards and the only Giants TD of the night. 

How Does This Affect The Rest Of The Roster?

Below the Minnesota Vikings WR1 and WR2 spots with Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, respectively, the WR roster is still a bit muddy. The Vikings have an incredibly talented starting WR duo but have struggled to find an able WR3. 

2016 1st-round pick Laquon Treadwell was expected to be a reliable WR3, maybe higher. He certainly hasn't lived up to the expectations. It was expected for Treadwell and newly signed receiver Kendall Wright to compete for the spot in training camp but with the addition of Tavarres King, things have gotten even cloudier. 

Not to mention, Brandon Zylstra, Cayleb Jones and Stacey Coley will be fighting for a spot on the roster. Training camp will surely be dramatic this season. 

Tavarres King, get ready for the best season of your life, and get ready to represent the Bold North.

SKOL

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Zimmer Project: Leading a Dynamic Defense

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The man leading the number one defense in the NFL builds character through strenuous work. Who will be his next project?

By: Chris Julson
Twitter: @coachjulson
Published: April 2nd, 2018
Photos via: Vikings.com

Mike Zimmer understands the difficulties of the business. He takes no mercy to those who battle through the challenges of the league. Why you may ask? He has been there himself. His path to becoming head coach of the Minnesota Vikings has shaped the way he molds young athletes into successful careers.

Studying Zimmer's defense is fascinating. He runs a 4-3 base system and prefers flexibility amongst his positions. He loves to create confusion. In his most discussed double A-gap blitz, Anthony Barr, and Eric Kendricks are often found between either the guard or the center. In this position, they are able to disguise coverages and blitzes. 



He prefers aggressive and versatile cornerbacks and safeties. Harrison Smith often sneaks up to the line of scrimmage, creating up to seven rushers to confuse opposing offensive lines and the quarterback. When and where is the blitz going to come from?



He expects his defensive lineman to disrupt the quarterback. If they are athletic enough, he will have his defensive ends drop back in coverage. There must not be too much trust there yet.

I imagine his defense will be replicated more and more throughout the league. The truth of the matter is, though, that you need the perfect style of players and Minnesota has them. When everyone plays their role efficiently and puts trusts in one another, his defense is dynamic; proven with the statistics below.

 Zimmer's Defenses Ranked YPG 

 Zimmer Project 

Entering his fifth season, Zimmer has taken on a fair share of projects since coming to the Twin Cities. My definition of a "Zimmer Project," is a player who has benefited from the education of the head coach. I will give reasons as to why this defense will continue to be a dominant force amongst the league. It largely has to do with the impact that the leader of this team, Mike Zimmer, has had on the development of our favorite Minnesota Vikings. 

He started off his head coaching career by drafting Xavier Rhodes and Sharif Floyd. Remember Rhodes early in his career having a multitude of holding penalties, and as a result, Zimmer made Rhodes wear boxing gloves? He has arguably become one of the few elite cornerbacks in the league since that day. His confidence from last season should only improve.


Sharif Floyd has shown that Zimmer takes no mercy to those who are unable to stay on the football field. Organizations used the excuse to not give Zimmer a head coaching job because he is brutally straightforward with his players and even the media. This may be true. However, I consider it very fitting for an area that is known as,"Minnesota Nice." I mean, there is even a store at the Minneapolis airport called, "Minnesota, State of Nice." That is far from ideal in the sport of football.



The two-time Pro Bowler, Terence Newman, followed Zimmer when he left Dallas for Cincinnati, and then ultimately to Minnesota. Sid Hartman of Star Tribune quoted Newman saying,


“[Zimmer] has a crazy ability to get guys to play better than they have been playing. He has gotten a lot of guys throughout the years, Dallas, Atlanta, Cincinnati and here, to play [outstanding] football.”

If Newman decides to return to football, he would be entering his 16th season, and Minnesota should look to retain him on a team friendly deal. He will be able to continue to help 'coach' and develop Zimmer's current projects, Trae Waynes, and Mackensie Alexander. 


Waynes had an up and down start to his career. He often gets beat deep, yet has the speed to recover. In my opinion, he relies on his speed too often. The 25-year-old will enter his prime, and has his most important season in front of him. Zimmer was quoted by the Pioneer Press saying,


“When he came in, he had a lot to learn,” Zimmer said. “I probably messed him up a little bit by trying to play him at nickel some. I was giving him a little more to do with some of that. He’s not a real talkative guy, he is pretty quiet and reserved in the things he’s done.”

He has been under a lot of scrutinies since entering the league, much like the similarities of Xavier Rhodes early in his career. This may be an indication that fans should not lose hope on the Michigan State stand-out just yet. 



Mackensie Alexander will enter his third season with the Vikings. He is undersized, and like Waynes and Rhodes has not looked promising early in his career. Alexander was given a first-round grade heading into the draft, yet he fell to the 54th pick. CBS Minnesota quoted Zimmer before the Carolina game last season saying,


"He'll have moments where he won't do what he is supposed to do all the way, but he's getting a lot better with it," Zimmer said of Alexander. "I think he's starting to understand where his help is, when we have man or zone, different things, understanding routes."

This quote proves that Zimmer puts an extensive amount of attention towards doing your job. It may sound simple, but the truth of the matter is that it is far from being a walk in the park. In an extensive NFL playbook, it makes it incredibly challenging. Zimmer is excellent at teaching players their role. I do not want to play this down. Coaching is all about teaching every player their part, and Zimmer is one of the greatest I have ever seen at it.


The secondary, at this point of the offseason, consists of standout Rhodes, up-and-coming Waynes, and young Alexander. I expect the Vikings to add more depth through the draft, precisely at the nickel position. The defense had a historically excellent regular season last year. It was brought back down to earth in the playoffs, primarily since the secondary was exploited. This squad is much better than when Zimmer arrived, and look for it only to improve if the slow start to Rhodes career is any indication.



Harrison Smith and Andrew Sendejo were also apart of the team before Zimmer arrived. Smith gives the defense flexibility to open up the playbook and ultimately gives him an opportunity to make plays all over the field. These three quotes were written from an article by Mike Wobshall on Vikings.com,


“I really get to do it all – blitz, play deep, come down and contain the run. I really get to do everything that a defensive player could be assigned to,” Smith said. “It kind of lets you get involved in every aspect of the game.”

“The thing I like most about Harrison is he’s a football player, he’s intelligent,” Zimmer said. “He comes and asks questions if he doesn’t know, and he’ll try to do it to the very best he possibly can.”

"The bottom line? Smith’s a perfect fit," Wobshall said.


Andrew Sendejo was once a player that many fans could not wait to replace. He continues to prove us wrong with his hard-hitting mentality, although, I still believe he needs to improve on his coverage abilities. Sendejo and Smith have somewhat similar skill sets. Zimmer, in my honest opinion, needs to find a guy that is reliable in coverage on the back end of the field to prevent the big play. Sendejo is an excellent football player, but pairing someone to compliment Smith’s skill set to a greater extent would be much more ideal.

Jayron Kearse is 6'4", 205-pound frame is ginormous for his position. Mainly used a specialist, specifically a gunner. If he catches on to Zimmer's scheme, he could very well be the future of the safety position. He has a long ways to go to become an every down player.

Eric Kendricks and Anthony Barr are two of the most fascinating players according to what they are asked to do and the skill set that it requires doing so. They must cover sideline to sideline, often times chasing running backs that are capable of catching the ball out of the backfield and running +-4.5 speed. Their flexibility to disguise a blitz, and recover fast enough to get into coverage is incredibly valuable.

I am also hoping that Ben Gedeon takes a leap in his production. His skill set and future role remind me a great deal of Chad Greenway. He will be asked to be a ball-hawk in the middle of the field, securing an abundant amount of tackles.



Everson Griffen has been the voice of the Vikings, and Mike Zimmer has been all about it. In a quote from Ben Goessling on ESPN.com,


"He’s not a guy that’s afraid to voice his opinion or his leadership skills," Zimmer said. "I think at first he tried to be the image of a captain and just not the image of himself. I think he felt better after we had that talk to just be himself and do what he keeps doing and people will respect him."

I love the fact that Zimmer allows his player's personalities to flourish. After the 2017 season, we found out that Griffen was battling plantar fasciitis, a condition that triggers pain in the bottom of the foot. He played through it throughout the season. His health will be beneficial to next seasons success. 

Danielle Hunter has long arms, speed, and strength. Lindsey Young on Vikings.com quoted Zimmer during a presser saying,


“There’s times when he wants to raise up and start to peek and see what the play’s going to be instead of coming off low, defeating his man, and then once he gets control of it, then figuring out what’s going on from there,” Zimmer explained to Twin Cities media members. “So to me, that’s the next step in his development.”

These skills sets to Zimmer are essential for his defensive ends. It goes to show how Brian Robison has been able to improve towards the end of his career. He is the exact definition of a Viking. His football career is down to its last hoorah. I hope that the team asks Robison to restructure his contract to a more team friendly deal. Just like Terance Newman, the squad could use his depth. 



Linval Joseph and the newest member of the team, Sheldon Richardson, are both players that started their careers elsewhere. Joseph, in my eyes, is one of the most under-rated players in the league. I cannot wait to see him next to Richardson next season. These two should compliment each other well. I am not trying to discredit these two, more-so give credit to Joseph; He gave Shamar Stephen and Tom Johnson the ability to have excellent seasons by eating up double-teams. The Joseph and Richardson combination creates one of, if not, the best defensive line in the National Football League.

Next seasons success will be dependent on the players discussed. They need to stay healthy. Depth may be, as the old saying goes, “An Achilles Heel.” These players are to the point where they understand Zimmer’s scheme. Play together, know your role each and every down, and watch out. I do not want to excite you too much, but it could be another historically great season for this defense. The draft will be crucial to adding additional depth.


Mike Zimmer has proven to take a college talent, and turn them into a product of a system that is extensively efficient. His future projects will likely come in later rounds due to the dire need of offensive lineman.  However, if someone like Maurice Hurst, or even Josh Jackson is available, Zimmer may look to entice the organization to draft on the defensive side of the football. Whomever, the organization, decides to select to uplift their defense, they should expect their head coach to strenuously bring out their best football for years to come.


#ZimReapers #InZimWeTrust

VikingNations would like your opinions on which prospects you would like to see in purple.


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