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Viking View (10/22/2008)
By John Edstrom

More stupid mistakes

...lose, lose, lose

Well fans, who would have predicted, being told the Vikes would score 41 points, Adrian Peterson would run for two TDís, and Gus Frerotte pass for 298 yards, a not very narrow Vikings loss? The seasoned fan of the Purple, thatís who! Once again, the play of the Vikes mirrored that of their opponent on a Sunday. When the Lions came to town and couldnít score, the Vikes generated little offense either.

Meanwhile, down in Chicago the game quickly became a shoot-out, with the Vikes losing, ostensibly because of special teams blunders and the usual plethora of penalties. Some of these were unusually stupid, for instance the pig-pile 15-yarder on Jared Allen, (our savior), and especially the offsides on Ray Edwards to allow the field goal just before halftime. What could he have been thinking, or not? So many of Brad Childressí players just canít seem to keep their heads in the game at crucial moments.

Obscured by the 14 points given up on punts was the suspect strategy of the short kickoffs after the Vikings first two TDís. Why, when you are afraid of long returns, do you go ahead and concede midfield with short kicks? What does it say to a team that you have just scored on rather easily?

Even without the points given away on special teams, you wonder if the Vikes wouldnít have come up short in this game, as their defense did whenever it counted. Once again the opposition has gone to the three-step drop and quick throws over the middle of the field, shredding the Purple pass defense. And when Bears QB, Kyle Orton, needed time the pass rush didnít come anywhere near. If his receivers hadnít dropped some balls the game wouldnít have been as close as it was. This Vikes pass defense looks like the same old bunch to me, Jared Allen or not.

Now comes the bye week so we can at least get our yards raked, and then the Texans visit, with at least two victories under their belts after polishing off the Lions down in Houston. They donít seem quite the same pushover anymore. I suppose the Purple will eke out another shabby little win so as to postpone any decisive action up in the big office at Winter Park.

On the other hand, last year at about this time the Vikes inexplicably picked up their play and went on a winning streak. This yearís edition could easily do the same if it would cut down on mistakes and play defense as well as offense on a given Sunday.

It is promised that Madieu Williams will finally make his debut against the Texans, and he is supposed to be a great cover safety. Perhaps he will be the element to get this defense firing on all cylinders, rather than just another superfluous addition to a unit that seems to add up to less than the sum of its parts.



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