January 27, 2013

Another Viking to the Pro Bowl in last-minute switch

Filed under: Football — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 11:45

The Minnesota Vikings 2012 season ended at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, but the individual efforts of a number of players has been recognized by nominations to the NFC Pro Bowl team. Originally the Viking contingent consisted of running back Adrian Peterson, fullback Jerome Felton, and rookie kicker Blair Walsh. Alternates who were added to the team included defensive end Jared Allen, linebacker Chad Greenway, and tight end Kyle Rudolph. Yesterday, it was announced that rookie offensive tackle Matt Kalil would be going to Hawaii as an injury replacement for the Washington Redskins’ Trent Williams:

Whoever invented the term “the more the merrier” must’ve been looking into the future at the Vikings’ 2013 Pro Bowl contingent. That contingent stood at six as of Friday morning. And now it stands at seven after the last-second addition of left tackle Matt Kalil to the team. Kalil replaces Trent Williams of the Redskins who dropped out. I think every original member of the team has now dropped out except the four Vikings. And Jeff Saturday who is the one guy who totally does not belong there.

Update: There’s apparently a bit of a backstory to why Williams won’t be playing:

December 17, 2012

Vikings beat Rams with another stellar Adrian Peterson performance

Filed under: Football — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 09:16

This was a do-or-die game for both teams: only the winner would still have playoff aspirations. At 7-6, the Vikings were contending for a wildcard in the NFC North, while St. Louis was in contention in the NFC West with a 6-6-1 record.

The Rams hadn’t allowed a 100-yard rusher in several games and featured strong defensive line performances to clog running lanes and limit opportunities. It worked well: after eight runs, Adrian Peterson had only tallied eight yards. It was the ninth run that broke it open: 82 yards to the end zone for the touchdown (the Vikings never gave up the lead). By the time the Vikings stopped sending Peterson in, he’d gained over 200 yards and was that much closer to breaking Eric Dickerson’s rushing record (2,105 yards, set in 1984). It’s already his best season at 1,812 yards with two games left to play.

The “Blair Walsh Project” continues to prove the wisdom of drafting a kicker: he now owns the Vikings rookie scoring record and made five-of-five of his field goal attempts (53, 50, 42, 38, and 51 yards). It’s the first time a Vikings kicker has hit three field goals from 50 yards or more (and he also tied the NFL record with eight in a season).

October 1, 2012

Vikings beat Lions 20-13 in Detroit

Filed under: Football — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 08:17

Minnesota finally broke the longest in-division losing streak in the NFL, having lost 11 straight divisional games up to yesterday’s visit to Ford Field in Detroit. The Vikings never trailed after Percy Harvin took the opening kickoff 105 yards for a touchdown. Later in the game, punt returner Marcus Sherels went 77 yards to score a second special teams TD. Adrian Peterson got his first 100-yard rushing game of the season, and Christian Ponder continued his zero interception streak going for another game (but it was the defence and special teams players who won the game … with a lot of help from Detroit’s butter-fingered wide receiving corps).


September 24, 2012

Vikings upset San Francisco 49ers in Minnesota

Filed under: Football — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 00:01

Lots of bookies are unhappy with the result of Sunday’s game in Minnesota, as the underdog Vikings played a complete game and came out with a big win over the heavily favoured San Francisco 49ers. Tight End Kyle Rudolph came down with two touchdown passes from Christian Ponder, and Ponder scrambled for another TD. Rookie Kicker Blair Walsh set a team record with another 50+ yard field goal to extend his career-opening streak to three games. 1500ESPN’s Tom Pelissero and Judd Zulgad wrap up the game from the Metrodome:

Update: Ted Glover at the Daily Norseman:

God damn it, it may be cheap, and it may be cliche, but this was as solid a team victory as this organization has had in a long, long time. When the offense needed to make a long drive and score, they did. When the defense absolutely, positively, had to get off the field, they did. When the special teams needed a big play, they got one. When Leslie Frazier and the coaching staff needed to dial something up, they did. Honestly, if you can’t get on board after this win, or get pumped up after a victory this convincing, you need to go cheer for another team. I can’t help you. If this was college, and I was handing out helmet stickers, everyone would get one, because this was a great win for this franchise. The Vikings just didn’t beat the 49ers, they flat out kicked their ass.

Kicked. Their. Ass.

September 10, 2012

Vikings beat Jaguars 26-23 in overtime

Filed under: Football — Tags: , , , , , — Nicholas @ 08:57

The first half of yesterday’s home opener had all the hallmarks of 2011: miscommunication, bad tackling, poor judgement, and an air of general ineptitude. The game matched up two remarkably similar teams: both led by second-year quarterbacks, both with franchise running backs returning to the game (one from injury, one from a contract dispute), and both desperate to improve on a very disappointing 2011 NFL season.

In spite of the miscues and mistakes, the Vikings kept the game close while the offense tried to get it together. Just before the end of the first half, things started to look positive for the purple, getting on the board with an Adrian Peterson TD (highlights here).


August 11, 2012

Vikings defence crumbles in San Francisco

Filed under: Football — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 09:50

The first preseason game is out of the way and it wasn’t pretty. Both the Vikings and 49ers rested some of their starters, and the starters who played generally only stayed in the game for a series or two.

Most accounts agree that the Vikings’ offensive starters did well except for a rash of drops that cut short the first couple of drives. Christian Ponder’s decision-making was better than last year, not trying to force the ball into coverage and being willing to throw the ball away when nothing developed. The offensive line apparently held up well, giving Ponder time to get past his first read and making the most of what opportunities were offered. Blair Walsh scored all the Vikings points (two field goals), and got the ball deep enough on kickoff to keep San Francisco from any big returns.


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