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Winfield Makes Immediate Impact

Posted by Mike Wobschall on December 14, 2009 – 8:23 am

If there was any question about the effect CB Antoine Winfield has on the Vikings defense, that question was answered on Sunday. After missing 6 games due to a foot injury, Winfield returned on Sunday and registered 9 tackles and a forced fumble against the Cincinnati Bengals.

All in a day’s work for #26.

It’s not as if the Vikings defense was relegated to chopped liver status without Winfield. While Winfield was out of the lineup, the Vikings defense allowed 18.6 points per game. With the Pro Bowl CB, the Vikings are allowing 16.6. But there’s no denying that Winfield’s presence gives the defense an added dimension.

“It goes without saying how much having Antoine (Winfield) back was,” Vikings QB Brett Favre said after the game. “I consider him one of the top five run defenders in all of football. Not just this year, because I’ve played against him.

Not only is he good against the pass, he’s as valuable to our run stop defense as Kevin (Williams) and Pat (Williams.) The guy’s outstanding. Having him back sure helps a lot.”

As for Winfield’s extended absence, Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress said it was important to make sure Winfield could give it 100% effort when he returned.

“We just wanted to make sure that he could pull the trigger and go the speed that he wanted and push off,” Childress explained. “He’s a collision football player. He’s never going to run up on the side of something, he’s going to directly hit them in the mouth. Those are the kind of things you miss from him.

“Those splash plays that happen on the edge when he approaches a sweep. Usually they are lost yardage plays. It has a tendency to elevate the rest of the defensive guys.”


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7 Responses to “Winfield Makes Immediate Impact”

  1. By Canadian Viking on Dec 14, 2009 | Reply

    I was blown away at how well he played yesterday, what a difference maker he can be. I would not want to lineup as WR against him or RB for that matter. Him being out on the field made all the DB’s play better. Did you see Griffin lay out Ochocinco? Wow

  2. By dmac32 on Dec 14, 2009 | Reply

    I’m glad Winfield decided to come back when he was completely healthy….He looked like it yesterday. Far too often players come back too early (think Michael Turner for Atlanta) and end up hurting their team by reaggravating the same injury. The entire defense looked outstanding, and I think that they set the tone for the team. Did you see how hard AP and Taylor ran yesterday against the #2 run D in the league? This team is ready for the playoffs.

  3. By Skol Joel on Dec 14, 2009 | Reply

    Antoine giving himself a set of push-ups after that missed interception was one of my favorite Vikings moments this year. It was a simple, silly gesture, but it proves that #26 takes his job seriously and knows that you don’t get to 11-2 without discipline. Welcome back, AW!

  4. By VikingsDefenseFan on Dec 14, 2009 | Reply

    Winfield makes our defense scary lol.

  5. By vikingsfan1955 on Dec 14, 2009 | Reply

    Now chilly is showing the leadership we expected of him,and keeping winfield out this long was smart we need him fresh for the push and he showed that he is ready in the bengals game.I will again say to the guys that played while he was out great job we are so proud of u.

  6. By rap99 on Dec 14, 2009 | Reply

    JOEL, i think it also shows unity, was it rice who did push-ups a few games ago? they seem to be having fun! thats a good thing !

  7. By purple08 on Dec 15, 2009 | Reply

    Hopefully Lord Favre can pick his game up a notch or two. He has been pretty weak the last couple of games. The old fellow must be getting tired. Maybe we should rest him for the last couple of games and get T-Jack some reps just in case Favre hurts his arm again or his vision and hearing start to go. Don’t forget to take your pills Brett!

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