Active Night For Vikings Defense

Posted by Mike Wobschall on September 3, 2010 – 9:51 am

I came away from training camp and the preseason impressed with and excited about the Vikings 1st-team defense, specifically with the health and strength of the front 7. I think they are poised to have another dominant effort in 2010.

But coming away from Thursday night’s preseason finale against the Denver Broncos, I’m also impressed with what I saw from the reserves on defense, and again it was particularly the front 7 that caught my eye.  On the night, the Vikings defense forced 4 fumbles, tallied 3 sacks and 7 tackles for a loss, held Denver to 2.7 yards per carry, held the Broncos scoreless on 3 of 5 trips in the red zone and they even had a goal line stand.

“Those guys have played that way all year long, all training camp long, and they’ve played consistently,” Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress said after the game. “Whether you’re talking about Letroy Guion, or Jayme Mitchell, Fred Evans. Any of those guys. Brian Robison. They’ve all made plays at different times throughout training camp, and it’s (defensive line) probably one of the stronger positions on our football team right now.”

While the defensive line as a group played particularly well all preseason, it was a pair of LBs and a starting S that starred in Thursday night’s victory. Erin Henderson led the club with 9 tackles and also added a pair of fumble recoveries, one of which he returned 35 yards for a TD. Jasper Brinkley also impressed from the LB position, tallying 7 tackles (1 for a loss) and also forcing a fumble. And S Tyrell Johnson had a nice night, hauling in an INT off of Tim Tebow and also adding 6 tackles (1 for a loss).

Speaking of Tebow, the rookie QB flashed some positive signs for the Broncos. But he also endured some rough spots. Here is how Tebow’s 8 series ended: fumble, INT, fumble, fumble, goal line stand (turnover on downs), TD, TOD, TOD.

The most impressive part of the night for the Vikings defense began with Henderson’s fumble return for a TD and ended when the Vikings were able to register a rousing goal line stand following an INT off of Joe Webb that was returned to the Minnesota 6-yardline. From there, Denver ran 4 plays and never got into the endzone, with the 4th down play resulting in a 2-yard loss on a rushing attempt.

In fairness, I must point out that the Vikings gave up 27 first downs, 21 points and 437 net yards. But the victory, 4 turnovers and the 4th-down and goal line defense more than made up for the negatives and, more importantly, it should yield even more confidence in a Vikings defense that already looked quite formidable.

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Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 16 Comments »

16 Responses to “Active Night For Vikings Defense”

  1. By purplehorn on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    Hey Mike……How come Brett Favre wasn’t in the game last night? My head almost exploded. Chili has some very tough decisions to make, but for my two cents I would contact the Cardinals or Steelers and trade Rosenfels or T-Jack if possible and on the cut down let more offense guys go and stay very deep on defense. More trade possibilities for defense talent than the other way around. Webb will not clear waivers if Chili even maybe has thoughts of trying that- which I’m sure he doesn’t.

    Are you ready for some football?

  2. By MGR4FUN on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    i totally agree mike … that was some kind of defensive display … i enjoyed watchin the #1s cheerin on the #2s and really celebratin those huge 4th down plays and gaol line stands … that is a football “team” … front 7 for the defense is amazin … experience / youth / strength and speed … as for my opinion of the day … i think we are alot better off in the secondary than given credit for … is time to turn up the heat and rock nola … “AGAIN”

  3. By Jeremy on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    They were up against the Bronco’s #1’s for the first 7-8 minutes of the game too. (Well I’m no Bronco’s roster expert, but Orton was in there, and you generally don’t put your starting QB in the game behind the #2 o-line with the #2 skill players.)

  4. By joey on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    have favre teach Webb everything he knows and you have a great Quarterback who can do it all, plus his size makes it harder to take him down!

  5. By Robins on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    We all started yelling when Webb took off running! He is so fast! He has a great future ahead for him. I think Tarvaris is a waste. After a few years he should be better then he is. He reminds me of Matt Lienart. Jackson should be traded. I like Sage! I think he has great potential. He should be Brett’s backup. They all need to learn as much as they can from Brett.

  6. By Ronald D. Fox on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    I have not seen the game yet. But I watched the game against Seattle. I liked what I saw in our first round draft choice. He is a ball hawk and not afraid to come up for run support. If this defense stays healthy, and the offense can get the running game going full stride, we can beat anybody. Go Vikes!

  7. By David Musgrove on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    We need to go after Houshmandzadeh. RIGHT NOW! Need another receiver to get it done this year.

  8. By OLDSCHOOL on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    That “D” is going to be forced into being the glue that holds this season together. I believe that the “O” will struggle this year….our “D” will have to hold teams down and make the other teams turn the ball over or we are in deep S$%^!

  9. By The viking Dave on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    Javon Walker? R u kiddin me?

  10. By OLDSCHOOL on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    This “D” will have to be the thing that holds this team together or we will get killed!

  11. By VikingsDx3 on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    You can tell Erin and EJ are brothers by the way they play.. Freaking awesome to watch those guys in action.

  12. By PurplePeopleEater on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    Erin definately looks like he has improved over the years. It would be kinda cool to see him start next to EJ next year. What’s the length left on Leber’s contract?

  13. By Lito on Sep 3, 2010 | Reply

    One of the quarterbacks had to go, although I thought that Sage did better than Tavaris this preseason. Will Percy replace Darius in the punt/kick return game? The biggest need of the Vikes is a behemoth offensive lineman. If there are a deep threat wideout and a cornerback/special teams player, they would help too. Go Vikings!

  14. By 24/7/365vikes on Sep 4, 2010 | Reply

    I get so sick of hearing about forced turnovers. Not all turnovers are forced by the defense. Some are gifts from the offense. How can you get excited about Erin Hendersons TD. It was a gift from the offense. All he did was pick it up and run with it. If I was a little faster I could have done that. How can you get excited about Tim Tebow passing his Broncos up and down the field against our 2nd and 3rd string defense. Turnovers are great when they come but without some gifts from Denver we would have lost that game.

  15. By 24/7/365vikes on Sep 4, 2010 | Reply

    What are the vikes thinking when they traded Reynaud. He is our best punt return man. They better have something up there sleeve and replace him with someone better or I am really going to be ticked.

    They should have moved him back to receiver instead of trading for Camarillo(who by the way has looked really good so far). Then we would still have Sapp and the loss of Cook wouldn’t be as significant.

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