Pagac, Winfield Go Back To School To Stymie Eagles Explosive Offense

Posted by Mike Wobschall on December 29, 2010 – 7:32 am

When the Vikings named Leslie Frazier interim head coach, the entire defensive staff had to step up with added responsibility. Frazier, of course, has been the Vikings defensive coordinator since 2007 but his new role as interim head coach doesn’t allow him to focus exclusively on the defense.

The Vikings defensive staff has responded well, particularly LBs coach Fred Pagac. He’s assumed much of the play-calling duties for Frazier’s defense and he might have done his best work on Tuesday night against the Philadelphia Eagles. And it was more than just playcalling – it was the formulation of the game plan all week as well.

In coming away with an impressive and decisive 24-14 win over the NFC East-champion Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field, the Vikings stymied one of the league’s most explosive offenses. The Eagles came in averaging 29.4 points per game, thanks in large part to one of the most dynamic weapons in the game of football – QB Mike Vick. He’s taken the NFL by storm in 2010 and is a legitimate MVP candidate because of his ability as a passer – a 20/5 TD-to-INT ratio – but also his rushing ability – more than 6.0 yards per carry with 9 TDs.

But he didn’t take the Vikings by storm. And it was an “old-school” approach by Pagac that led to the Vikings ability to contain Vick. Not old-school as in old-fashioned, but old-school as in how Pagac slowed down opposing offenses when he was coaching at Ohio State when CB Antoine Winfield was a standout there.

On Tuesday night, Pagac called a barrage of blitzes and pressures, frequently using DBs and LBs to rush Vick and make him uncomfortable. Pagac’s ace in the hold was CB Antoine Winfield, perhaps the surest-tackling CB in the entire NFL and arguably the Vikings best playmaker. Winfield came up huge on Tuesday night, tallying a sack on the game’s 2nd play and then registering a game-changing play late in the 2nd quarter.

On the play, Winfield blitzed off the corner and sacked Vick, causing him to fumble. Winfield then spotted the ball, got up off the ground scooped the ball and sprinted 45 yards for a TD to tie the game at 7 just before halftime. The Vikings went into the locker room with momentum and were able to expand the lead early in the 3rd quarter.

“That was the game plan,” Winfield said. “Coach told me, ‘We’re going to send you off the edge. Just contain [Vick]. Come up high because we know he likes to spin out.’ He did a great job of calling them. I tried to execute.”
The Star Tribune’s Chip Scoggins noted that Winfield joked that Pagac “took me back to Ohio State” with his playcalling because Pagac was Winfield’s defensive coordinator at Ohio State.
“That’s what I used to do when he was the coordinator for the Buckeyes,” Winfield said. “Whenever my number is called, I’m going to go out there and give maximum effort and I made some plays.”

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Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 19 Comments »

19 Responses to “Pagac, Winfield Go Back To School To Stymie Eagles Explosive Offense”

  1. By James F on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    This was the best total game of the season. Haven’t seen Winfield blitz like that in a while. He has done that before for this team. Great play calls. Should have done this earlier in the season. Defense play well. Webb was amazing. Hopefully next season there can be a consistant effort like this. It just seemed like everynone was trying to prove something all night long. Great job coaches!! GO VIKES!!!

  2. By Robins on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    What a great game! What a great team! It was fun to watch, like last year! Joe did a magnificent job! Frazier, Webb, everyone came together for this win to shock everyone! Keep Webb and Frazier and I think we have a winning team.

  3. By David Plowman on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    Congrats to a whole team effort. The offense, defense and special teams all played well. It was great to see this team play the way they did. Now off to Detroit and hopefully another win. Go Vikes

  4. By JACKINGS1976 on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    no hay nada mejor que ver a tus vikings ganar !!!! y ademas de visita y contra las aguilas de filadelfia!!! felicito a todo el equip, hicieron un gran trabajo, jugaron con el corazon, cual vikings son !, felicidades a todos.

  5. By vikes blogger on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply, read about Webb’s big night

  6. By dryes on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    This team has a chance to compete again next year. Keep Frazier, Webb get rid of Bevel because his playcalling has sucked all year. I noticed that he repeatedly called draws on third and long (wtf). And he’s afraid to run between the tackles with Peterson, resulting in a lot of east-west tackles for loss. New offensive coordinator, strong off-season for webb, resign our guys= playoff run. Let’s get real Vikings!

  7. By DRS on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    OMG the Vikings showed up to play a football game, and they won! Someone must have told them they may not have a job next year if they did not shape up this game. Now can they keep this up in the Lions game? Looks like we do not need a QB in the draft next year, Joe looks good, though time will tell, Maybe a 3rd or 5th round pick for a QB. Get a veteran QB in the free agency over the off season, but above all get a defense, with an offensive line. We need new offence coach that is for sure.

  8. By dryes on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    Oh, yeah and fire Mike Wobschall. He knows some facts but his opinions are naive and he sucks up to whoever is in charge. Obviously his connections got him the job, not his skills. Any real fan knows Mike is pet project and that he lacks knowledge that should be used to formulate meaningful ideas. Sorry, Mike but you do not deserve your pay and I’m sick of reading your boring, a55-kissing garbage.

  9. By DRS on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    What was this dropping the ball by the defense all night long? One interception out of what? The score could have been what? Why grab the face mask as well? If coach learned this type of defense when he was with the Eagles that worked so well, why haven’t they used it sooner? Will there be a next year for the first string players, or will there be a lock out? Will we be watching replacements like the last time?

  10. By DRS on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    Got to go.

  11. By DRS on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    Go Vikings!

  12. By CaribooBill on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    A great effort by all! I believe that Jared Allen had a great game, as well – he harassed the Eagles all night. We now have 3 youngish QB’s – Webb, Bomar and Ramsay – Webb looked very good but needs more work to prove himself. Other defenses will come up with ways to counteract him and he will have to adjust – good coaching will help him with that. The Wilfs should sign Frazier now – there is no need to wait. We need continuity to get a head start on next year. GO JOE! GO VIKES!

  13. By Derek on Dec 29, 2010 | Reply

    I just couldn’t believe how many times WInfiled blitzed last night! He had to blitz about 20 times! Great!

  14. By larry moore on Dec 30, 2010 | Reply

    keep coaching staff in place please it works now youve seen it. vs eagles. just had some flaws with comcautation thats all and every one on the same page now and the detail problems and coaching fundmentails that needed to be taught and finding deffence skeems that work , and offence line coaching .. if the deffence and offence line does its job and deffence backs do ther job the quarter backs job is much easier, than playing catch up football.and the play calling that fits your team ability , and the game is getting all of the angle to get an advantage to you team on both sides of the ball .

  15. By vikingsfan1955 on Dec 30, 2010 | Reply

    I see that webb can run the offence and if given a chance he can be the starter. I haven’t given up totally on t-jack because he can throw and evade defenders but its very apparent the webb is the future and we can take the division and possibly go all the way next yr.There will be a battle next yr for qb and I think jackson will edge him out but believe me we will be a force with both of the qb’s we have. I was disappointed in t-jack but he has shown he can be a good qb he just isn’t consistant and he has not had the team to run for a full season yet so he lacks a rythem with the recievers. I think we need to shore up the offensive line and then we will have a better chance. We will be in the playoffs next yr and we need to keep frazier as our head coach.

  16. By DRS on Dec 30, 2010 | Reply

    T-Jack fans give it up, He is trade bait. He has been around how many years, and cannot do his job yet? He runs in to AP and you say he is good? Joe and a good draft pick with maybe a good veteran QB from the draft is all the Vikings need for the QB position.

  17. By 印鑑 通販 かわいい on Dec 1, 2013 | Reply

    メンズバック 印鑑 通販 かわいい

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