My appreciation and respect for our veterans and current Military personnel prevents me from referring to athletes as heroes, or athletic performances as heroic. So I won’t call Percy Harvin’s performance on Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals heroic.
Rather, I’m characterizing Harvin as a warrior for the way he competed and produced at the Vikings most critical juncture of the season.
On a bum ankle he injured last week in the 1st quarter at New England, Harvin played the entire game and was arguably the most indispensible player. He hauled in 9 receptions for 126 yards and also ran back 5 kickoff returns for 88 yards. Six of Harvin’s 9 receptions resulted in 1st downs, including a 6-yard grab on 4th and 4 in the 4th quarter.
All of those numbers are impressive in their own right, but they become astonishing when you consider Harvin missed Wednesday and Thursday practices and was limited in practice on Friday. I watched him all week at Winter Park labor around and work his tail off to rehab the ankle, or at least heal the ankle to the point where he would have a chance to suit up for the game.
The NFL is full of ultra-competitive players, so I won’t argue that Harvin is unique in his competitiveness. But we all, including NFL players, have different pain tolerance levels. And it’s not even pain tolerance as much as it is the ability to perform, while feeling pain and while being inhibited by the injury. Harvin was able to brush all of that aside and be a true game-changer for the Vikings on Sunday.
“He’s a baller,” Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress said of Harvin after the game. “If every day was Sunday…he’s a little bit like Brett (Favre) from that standpoint; he loves to play the game. It’s hard to keep him down and deny it.”
This ankle injury goes back to last week’s game in New England. Harvin sustained the injury in the 1st quarter, came off the field and then re-entered the game and played well. The injury bothered him all week leading up to Sunday’s game and he was even listed as questionable on the injury report. He was able to suit up and play and there were several times during the game where he had to exit to either compose himself or have the ankle examined.
But time after time, he kept coming back into the lineup and producing.
Harvin is a warrior for the Vikings and he’s also a big reason why the Vikings were able to edge the Cardinals on Sunday.
Tags: Percy Harvin
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 75 Comments »
It’s been a while, but we finally have a victory to talk about in this week’s Monday Morning Mailbag. Do you have a comment or question? If you do, submit it by sending an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can also post them in the comments section below this entry.
Remember to include your first name and hometown with your submission.
We can’t post every comment/question, but we’ll respond to them all.
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 96 Comments »
The defense registered 6 sacks and allowed just 93 yards in the 2nd half, QB Brett Favre guided the offense to 17 points after halftime – including a game-tying 25-yard TD pass – and K Ryan Longwell booted a game-winning FG from 35 yards out. It all came together and the result was a dramatic 27-24 victory in front of another soldout, raucous crowd at Mall of America Field.
It was just like old times.
The Vikings won games in this fashion on a regular basis during the 2009 season but they’ve come out on the wrong side of drama-filled games several times already in 2010. This time, though, the Vikings came out on the right side and it’s fair to wonder if Sunday’s win will serve as a turning point for the reining NFC North champs.
The win moves Minnesota to 3-5, a far cry from their 12-4 performance last season. But the reason we’ll watch to see if Sunday’s win serves as the turning point is because the win was emotional and it came after a tumultuous 2 weeks; perhaps it will galvanize the Vikings going forward. It also came about because the defense finally found its pass rush – 6 sacks of Derek Anderson – and Favre regained his form from last year – 36 of 47 for 446 yards and 2 TDs.
There will be much more to come as vikings.com’s coverage of this week’s win over the Cardinals continues tonight and into tomorrow.
Tags: Ryan Longwell
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 181 Comments »
Vikings All-Pro RB Adrian Peterson scored on a 12-yard TD pass from QB Brett Favre at the 12:17 mark in the 2nd quarter. The drive lasted 2:43 on 5 plays for 52 yards. Vikings WRs Bernard Berrian and Percy Harvin hauled in 14 and 25-yard receptions, respectively, during the series.
On the ensuing play, though, Cardinals KR LaRod Stephens-Howling returned Ryan Longwell’s kickoff 96 yards to even the score at 7.
The Vikings responded by putting together an 11-play, 61-yard scoring drive that resulted in a 21-yard FG by Longwell.
With 1:30 remaining in the half, the Cardinals took over on their own 19. QB Derek Anderson & Co. worked their 2-minute offense well, needing only half that time (1:01 scoring drive) to reach the endzone. Anderson capped off the 7-play, 81-yard drive with a 30-yard TD pass to WR Andre Roberts.
Cardinals WR and native Minnesotan Larry Fitzgerald led the drive with 2 catches for 44 yards – the 1st coming on an important 3rd and 19 attempt that saw Fitzgerald leap for an acrobatic 30-yard reception, keeping the drive alive.
Minnesota will receive the 2nd half kickoff, trailing the Cardinals by a score of 14-10.
Posted in CJ Siewert | 294 Comments »
With Veterans Day coming up on November 11, the Vikings are utilizing pregame and in-game stadium elements to honor all service members past and present with a Salute to the Military-themed game presentation. Here are just a few of the elements…
National Anthem – The 34th “Red Bull” Infantry Division Band will perform the National Anthem before today’s game. They are stationed in Rosemount, MN and feature talented musicians that are trained as both performers and Soldiers. They play a varied repertoire of music for Minnesota National Guard ceremonies and events.
Hometown Hero – The Vikings feature a hometown hero at every game and today’s hometown hero is Lieutenant Colonel Mark Weber. LTC Weber has been in an Army uniform since the age of 14 and over the years he’s learned to fight battles in other countries. But the battle that’s closest to his home for him is his current fight against pancreatic cancer.
Color Guard – The color guard for today’s game is the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe AMVETS Post 53 Color Guard. The men and women in this group are the ceremonial guards reminding us of good citizenship and honor for those who have served our country.
Honorary Captain – Patrick Nelson was selected as the NFL Tillman Scholarship Award winner and will serve as today’s honorary captain. Nelson is enrolled at Minnesota State University where he is a double major in history and sports management, with a minor in athletic coaching, while maintaining a 4.0 GPA and volunteering as a mentor in the YMCA Big Brother program.
Halftime Entertainment – A special Minnesota Vikings Salute to the Military presentation will be performed by the 34th Infantry Division “Red Bulls” band.
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 17 Comments »
After being listed as questionable with an ankle injury, WR Percy Harvin is active and will play today against the Cardinals.
Here are the Vikings inactive players for today. Note that there are only seven inactive players instead of the usual eight, since the Vikings only have 52 players on their active roster instead of the usual 53. Presumably, WR Sidney Rice will take that 53rd spot soon as he makes his way back from hip surgery.
QB Joe Webb (3rd QB), S Tyrell Johnson, RB Albert Young, CB Frank Walker, LB Erin Henderson, G Chris DeGeare, and DT Letroy Guion.
Posted in All | 173 Comments »
For only the second time since the team revamped its uniforms in 2006, the Vikings will wear purple jerseys and purple pants today when they take on the Cardinals at Mall of America Field.
The only other time it was done resulted in a victory 20-13 win over the Chicago Bears on December 17, 2007.
Posted in All | 26 Comments »