Gaining The Extra Edge: LB Chad Greenway

Posted by Mike Wobschall on July 7, 2010 – 1:53 pm

#5 – CB Lito Sheppard
#4 – WR Bernard Berrian
#3 – CB Antoine Winfield
#2 – K Ryan Longwell
#1 – LB Chad Greenway

Over the past week, our “Gaining The Extra Edge” series identified 4 players (not including obvious stars such as Jared Allen or Brett Favre) who hold the key to the Vikings gaining the extra edge in 2010. Today, the series concludes with #1 on the list – LB Chad Greenway.

Greenway recorded a career-high 150 tackles in 2008 and followed up that effort by tallying a team-high 127 tackles in 2009, marking the 2nd consecutive season he led the Vikings in tackles. He also led all NFL LBs with 6 takeaways during 2009 – including 3 INTs – and then he went on to register 17 total tackles and 1.0 sack in the playoffs.

Known as a tireless worker, Greenway has rebounded strongly from a knee injury that ended his rookie season before it really ever began and now he enters his 5th season in 2010 poised to have another solid campaign. The University of Iowa product has settled in with his family among the local community and that’s allowed him to spend plenty of his offseason at Winter Park preparing for the season.

Aside from his status as a rising defender in the NFL, we position Greenway #1 in this series because of the leadership role he could take if MLB E.J. Henderson is forced to miss time early in the season as he recovers from a leg injury sustained late in the 2009 campaign. Henderson was leading the team in tackles when he was placed on injured reserve last season. And as bad as it stung to lose Henderson at a critical juncture in the regular season, Greenway’s ability to step up in #56’s absence allowed the Vikings defense to retain its toughness and help the team make a postseason run to the NFC Championship Game.

In the 6 games after Henderson’s injury, Greenway averaged 9.3 tackles per game, including consecutive games of 12 and 13 tackles during the regular season and then 8 tackles in the Divisional round playoff game and 9 stops in the NFC title game. If Henderson misses time to start the 2010 regular season, Greenway will once again have the opportunity to step in and increase his production.

And that will give the Vikings that extra edge in 2010.

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Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 16 Comments »

16 Responses to “Gaining The Extra Edge: LB Chad Greenway”

  1. By Purple Nation on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    How about Berrian and Harvin and T. Johnson and M. Williams come along with the rest of the Vikings players attenting Fitz. camp? How about that? Especially if they’re expecting to w0w the naysayers and prove themselves?

  2. By VikesFan on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Great point “Purple Nation!” I know it’s not Greenway news, but where are Berrian and Harvin? Are they at a better camp then Fitz’s? If not, they should be there!

  3. By mikewobschall on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Berrian was at Winter Park for much of the offseason and had a high participation rate in OTAs. I was pleased to see him around so much and I think it will pay dividends for him and the Vikings in 2010.

  4. By Carl K on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    All the picks are proven nfl stars. With the exception of Sheperd all the picks already play a strong leadership role for the Vikings. Yes, I will agree big things are needed from those players in order to win a superbowl… however, I think it is also safe to say it is expected that those players play at a high level. I like Winfield, Berrian, and Shepherd on the list… but I might have been tempted to throw a couple fresh bright eyed kids in the mix like Gerhart or Webb. Anyway, I enjoyed the series. Thanks Mike

  5. By Kansas Viking Fan on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Instead of Greenway or Longwell, why not Ben Leber? Greenway is young, and more then likely, will continue to perform at a high level for many years. Leber on the other hand, is aging. He is talented, but if his play slips off this year like many expect it to this or the next year, then our defense will be hurt from it. Leber needs to perform at a high level instead of falling off slightly like he has in recent years, in my opinion.

  6. By Rogerthevikefan on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Chad greenway is are best lb he has stayed healthy since his rookie year and he has gotten better every year and will be better this year too. E.j. has been hurt the last couple years and leber is solid but is getting up there while greenway is in his prime.

  7. By CA Norwegian on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    Our D rose to stuff NO many times, if not for funbles and the 12 disciples of idiocy we would have that ring. Chad is great! Them GB people will be Packing their cheese and heading for home again those Wiss-sinners. All the heads picked GB over Minn last year too! Feel like a rerun to anyone else?.

  8. By Pat the Viking on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    For My #1 – I would have wanted the TEAM -(to come together) for each player to commit themselves – 110% Heart, Mind and Soul for each and every DOWN = to play all out on every play to have FULLY Focus on nothing else BUT football = studing their films on the other players learning as much possible to gain that extra edge during each and every week

  9. By Lito on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    How about an edge on an offensive lineman to protect Bret Favre and create holes on the right side?

  10. By PurplePeopleEater on Jul 7, 2010 | Reply

    To no surprise, the column finishes off with one more established veteran player. Like many others, I am disappointed because I was led to expect something else. There is little that any of these players can do to make us appreciate them much more, regardless of the intangible possibilities that you have listed. We simply won’t be able to notice whether or not any extra edge in these areas occur (such as becoming a team leader).

    I’ve been expecting to see prospects for new stars on the team (safeties coming into their own perhaps), which will create a very obvious improvement to the team’s production. Extra passès defended and Interceptions would be huge, and are well within the scope of what is possible for the young guys defending deep. For some of the older guys like Pat Williams, a big difference maker will be the guys who fill in from time to time. They’ll have a big enough role where their performance could very well be noticed, good or bad. If it has the potential to be good performance then it would have been a great selection for what I was looking for in these blogs. Even AP could have been listed as a guy who has something more to accomplish. I still don’t understand why his name has been removed as too obvious. He had mistakes last year that will be noticed if he fixes them, and he has the void of Chester Taylor to fill now, or if not him then one of the new guys could have been listed for this opportunity to exceed.

  11. By MGR4FUN on Jul 8, 2010 | Reply

    well done mike and i agree with your choice … #52 has been a steady performer and his improvement has been nothing short of remarkable and yet the entire purple linebackin crew continues to be the most overlooked contributors to the success of the entire team … from a performance and leadership role both on the field and in the locker room and in the community … this could very well be the year that #52 takes that next step and becomes the all-pro i believe him to be … somethin that will allow this to happen his heart and his belief in himself of course but in his entire crew of backers competin at a level that force a leader to rise to the challenge … is no doubt #52 has complete confidence in #51 & #56 deliverin their best effort and after #54s late season performance i am certain that same trust has been earned … as hav #59 and #50 and #55 for the infamous work on special teams and preparation for every opportunity to step up and deliver the next gr8 hit … yup the most overlooked group of linebackers in the NFL … lead by #52 who will always let his playin do his talkin … and trust me on this #52 has said a bunch already and still has some yellin ta do!!

  12. By MGR4FUN on Jul 8, 2010 | Reply

    my bad … i made a huge over sight … #57 mr leman is just exactly what i was just referrin to … a tacklin machin just lookin for his next opportunity to make the next gr8 hit … on any other team #57 may well be a starter … he is someone to watch for in the future … my appologies to mr leman for my original oversight … the purple linebackers are a serious crew … in all aspects of the game … hav ya all seen the NFL tv commercial where coach childress says … “all i want is a defense that can get off the field” … it’s #52 and all his mates that make that happen … of course helps to hav the best d-line in the business and a gr8 mix of youth and experience in the db’s … but i believe our linebackers each and everyone are pushin the envelope strivin for excellence

  13. By mikewobschall on Jul 8, 2010 | Reply

    sorry to everyone who is disappointed with the series because of the lack of young or unestablished players. but the truth is that the Vikings are returning all 22 starters from last year’s team and there really are no rookies or new acquisitions – other than Lito Sheppard – who will be relied upon to give the Vikings an extra edge. Other possibilities who were not included on this list are Brian Robison, Madieu Williams and Jasper Brinkley.

  14. By Carl K on Jul 8, 2010 | Reply

    If I were a betting man, I would put my money on the five guys you gave us to have a big year and play great football in 2010. GOOD SOLID SAFE PICKS! I agree our line up is full of veteran starters and stars so we don’t have much room for rookies to step in and start. However I think we are all excited about our young talented depth that we have at most positions. Keep us posted on how these postion battles start to shape out during camp. Thanks

  15. By My Vikes 1961 on Jul 9, 2010 | Reply

    Chad is from a small town in South Dakota where giving a 110% (no matter what you’re doing) is customary. Barring any long term injuries I see #52 as going down as one of the great Vikings LB’s ever. I will also go on a limb and say he will wear purple for his entire career and then go back to the farm…much like Brett Favre (except he will only retire once).

    The LB core is solid – if the defensive secondary can do the same I think this is the year we finaly get it done. In turn, I will be able to get those guys off my back who have been riding me about the “big game” for the past 40 years!

  16. By evalu8er on Jul 9, 2010 | Reply

    Chad is from MY HOMETOWN in IOWA. Yes, it is a farm community, but close to the University of iowa so we get great teachers. I agree he has a wonderful work ethic, and when you watch the interceptions he has caught or almost caught, he puts huge effort into it. Another man could decide the ball is too far away to try for, but Chad lays himself out like a good receiver when trying to interrupt plays. He is a great addition to the Vikings and I feel has yet to hit his prime. he has been great, but the best is yet to come. Go Chad.

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