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5 Things To Watch Tonight

Posted by Mike Wobschall on September 1, 2011 – 7:31 am

After a month of training camp and three preseason games, it’s easy to write-off the fourth preseason game as meaningless and instead focus on the start of the regular season. But that’s not the climate surrounding the Vikings, according to Head Coach Leslie Frazier.

“I think the guys know going into this final game there are still some opportunities for them to make our team and help our team improve at a number of different spots,” Frazier said earlier this week. “So we do have certain spots where we know we have our starters in place, but we have some places up for [grabs] as well.”

With that in mind, here are five things to watch during tonight’s Vikings-Texans game…

Christian Ponder gets the start at QB
No, there won’t be a rigid, point-of-no-return decision made about the backup QB spot following this game. But tonight is still a significant test for rookie Christian Ponder because he’ll start the game and will likely get an extended look. Unfortunately, Ponder probably won’t play with a lot of first-teamers, so it’s hard to get a truly accurate gauge on his progress, but tonight will still be the best look Vikings coaches get at their first-round QB. Rather than 80-yard drives and long TD passes, I’m looking for Ponder to display confidence and poise, limit mistakes (penalties, bad reads, sacks) and to just play fast.

Everson Griffen at LB
Earlier this week, the Vikings played DE Everson Griffen at LB. Both Frazier and Defensive Coordinator Fred Pagac indicated that Griffen would play some LB tonight against Houston, as the Vikings get creative in trying to get their talented players out on the field. It’s a bit unclear yet what this development means. Some have speculated the team might not be pleased with Erin Henderson (I doubt that), while Frazier and Pagac have said it’s more about how well rookie Christian Ballard has played; with Ballard playing so well, he can provide depth along the defensive line while Griffen is moved to LB. At this point we don’t know how this experiment will go, but we will know a little bit more after tonight.

Who will step up at WR?
About the only certainty with regard to the Vikings WR situation is that Bernard Berrian, Percy Harvin and Michael Jenkins will make the team. After that, we don’t know A) how many total receivers the Vikings will keep and B) which receivers are in line for those additional roster spots. Manny Arceneaux, Devin Aromashodu, Stephen Burton, Greg Camarillo, Juaquin Iglesias and Jaymar Johnson are the remaining WRs on the roster. A couple weeks ago I would’ve discounted Arceneaux, but since then I think he’s taken a step up. Aromashodu is an attractive option because he can cover kicks and has great speed. Camarillo and Johnson can also perform punt return duties. Burton is a project and looks to have potential, while Iglesias is a smooth athlete and can probably play both out wide and inside as a slot receiver. So there is a lot to like about this group of WRs. The question now is, will any of them step up to separate themselves from the rest of the group?

Reserve offensive linemen
I thought the Vikings first-team offensive line played very well last week against the Cowboys. So well, in fact, that I’d be pleased if the Vikings decided to rest all five of them tonight. That course of action would allow the coaching staff to get a good, long look at the reserve offensive linemen on this roster. You’d like to keep all of them, but of course that’s not a realistic option. So tonight represents the last opportunity for this crew of players to make a case for themselves. Jon Cooper looks to be a step ahead of Brandon Fusco for backup center duties, but is “a step ahead” enough for Cooper to keep a spot over a draft pick? Ryan Cook, a late signing during camp, has stepped in nicely and is a versatile reserve. Another draft pick, DeMarcus Love, has looked good at times; can he stamp his first training camp and preseason with a solid performance tonight? Chris DeGeare was at one time a promising up-and-comer, where does he stand? And what about Pat Brown, Seth Olsen and Thomas Welch? All three of shown flashes of ability worthy of keeping around. Tonight is a big night for this crew.

Kickoff and punt return roles
I’m guessing both Lorenzo Booker and Percy Harvin won’t play much, if at all, tonight. That leaves a few extra return opportunities for the guys who do play. Can Marcus Sherels step into the return role and provide a little spark? That could be all he needs to secure a spot on the CB depth chart. Or maybe Jaymar Johnson can register another 40-yard punt return to convince the coaching staff to keep him on the WR depth chart. Will Greg Camarillo get a look at punt return? Can Cord Parks step in and contribute with another long kickoff return? I wouldn’t be surprised at all if a play or two on special teams tonight turns out to be a “tie-breaker” of sorts in determining a roster spot on either defense or offense.


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Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 138 Comments »


138 Responses to “5 Things To Watch Tonight”

  1. By kevinwi on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Can’t understand why you think Berrian is a lock to make the team….if I were looking objectively at Berrian as a Rookie, he wouldn’t make the cut. Only reason he caught the TD was a bad play by the Safety…and Berrian still almost dropped it. Unless a ball hits him in the hands, in stride, he has shown he won’t come up with the ball.
    Sherles and Burton look to make the roster…surprise release may be A. Allen and one of three special teamers (Onotolu, Farwell or Frampton) for players that are more versatile like Dean and Mistral Raymond.

  2. By vikefan1969 on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I have liked what I have seen from D. Love…this guys has shown some really good play and should make the roster…am thinking if PS he gets grabbed.

  3. By kevinwi on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    No Doubt D. Love will get picked up if put on PS…so will Reisner….both should find spot on active squad.

  4. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I don’t think that Sherels needs any more spark to ensure that he makes the team. After his performance in week 2, most of us were convinced that he deserves to step ahead of the competition.

    For WRs I like Aromashodu and either Johnson or Arceneaux. I don’t think that Camarillo’s sure hands should be enough to secure a spot on the team.

  5. By Troutdaddy on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Looking at these 5 things to watch, I am excited to see Ponder and how he handles himself. He needs to be smart and quick to make decisions. Griffen should do a great job in his LB role. He is a smart and up-beat player. Our WR’s is what many are still pretty passionate about- especially Berrian. Many think he should be cut- and I have felt much the same way, BUT proof will be in his performance. Time to step up or fade away into oblivion… Our linemen are shaping up nicely.Looking forward to the game to see even more improvement. As far as our kickoff/punt returns, I think we are going to see some good competition from these folks trying to make the team. I would love to see some big returns. Our coaches have some tough decisions to make! I am giddy…. I can’t wait…. I bleed purple…. nuf said…

  6. By Vikings4Life on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Camarillo will probably take the last receiver spot, aroshomadu and arcineux have not shown much. Jaymar will probably squeek by the cuts as always and placed in practice squad.

  7. By Vikings4Life on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    You cannot evaluate ponder playing with 3rd stringers, It would have been a better evualuation letting him play with the starters.

  8. By Stoney on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Wow, I agree with all four of you, not often that happens on this blog. But for some reason I know the Vikes will keep Berrian, I would rather see one of the younger guys make the cut at WR

  9. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    At the end of the day, any evaluation for the backup QB spot must take into consideration all the playing time Webb had last year– almost the full Chicago game against a very good D, and a whole prime time game against Philly when Philly was considered one of the best teams. This can go either way. One you could say Webb is more experienced and should get the backup spot. Or, you could argue, that with this added experience (and it is a lot of experience– not preseason– two full games against starters in the playoff hunt), Webb should be far ahead of Ponder, and I am not sure I see that. Ponder is close to Webb in performance– where would Ponder be with Webb’s experience? Tough choice. But we have two good backups to McNabb– that is a positive.

  10. By VikeFan on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I will be aggravated if the team keeps Mr. Berrian. I might understand as a sixth receiver. 1) M. Jenkins 2) P. Harvin 3) D. Aromashodu 4) E. Arceneaux 5) J. Iglesias. Those would be my five based on Preseason performance, physical stats, and age. The team needs younger blood and veteran experience to help them. As stated before, I would only keep Berrian as a sixth receiver to the team. (I would personally use that spot in a different position.)

  11. By PuRpLe 'n GoLd on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Im headed off to the dome tonight for the game! Cant wait! this should be good to see Ponder start, he was doing acceptable in the 4th quarter last week SKOL VIKES

  12. By PuRpLe 'n GoLd on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I wish aromashadu would step up, he is valuble when not many people realize it, i also think greg camarillo should make it as well, i went to training camp and he look sharp and crisp, he may not have percy harvin speed but if you run your routes right and catch the ball then your a reliable player (greg camarillo)

  13. By Norseman on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    If only the coaching staff read these blogs, cause I whole heartedly agree about berian. I dont think he has what it takes to make this team. I mean you have one route to run, … out. you need to be able to fight for the ball, I dont see that out of berian and never have. as far as I am concerned seattle can have him too.

  14. By DRS on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    http://ca.sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=capress-fbn_vikings_stadium-7942003

    New obstacle emerges for Vikings stadium

    The Associated Press 43 minutes ago

    ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Vikings’ bid for a new suburban football stadium is facing a new obstacle as a key state senator says she wants to require a public vote on the project.

    Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch tells The Associated Press that Ramsey County voters who would be paying a proposed half-cent sales tax increase should get to vote on it. Supporters of the stadium proposal in a suburb north of St. Paul have predicted voters would defeat the tax increase and kill the whole project.

    Koch spoke Thursday, a few hours after a team official said the Vikings might be willing to increase their share of costs to get the deal done. The team is in the final year of its lease at the Metrodome.

  15. By DRS on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    The Vikings are looking good and may get to the SB this year. I sure hope they do get to the SB, for this may be the last year they will be the Minnesota Vikings. Good job Minnesota!

  16. By LESLIE FRAZIER on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    COACH FRAIZER YOU SHOULD MAKE DEMARCUS LOVE EITHER A GUARD OR CENTER

  17. By DRS on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    My concerns for the team are why do they keep players who cannot or will not do their jobs? If the player is questionable in his ability to play this year, should not the coach move them aside, either by letting them go or putting them on injured reserves?

  18. By Alex Lawson on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I’m sick and tired of people complaining about Bernard Berrian. Guess what fans…he’s going to be our #2 receiver so you better get used to it. And his touchdown was not a bad play by the safety, he got behind the safety because Berrian is fast! He’s not going to come up with every ball but that’s not what he’s paid for…he’s going to run the fly route and avg 20 yards a reception. Get used to it Vikings fans…

  19. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Unfortunately he’s going to average 1 drop for every 2 targets as well.

  20. By Asher on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    If Frazier were to tell our 3 QBs to huddle up and decide for themselves what 5 WRs should be kept on the squad, I bet Berrian’s name will be on that list.

  21. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Chris Johnson just reached a deal for a new contract today. That surprised me since just yesterday he had started telling his fans that they weren’t “real” fans for criticizing his holdout, and even told them to “STFU”. Anyone with basic knowledge of texting shorthand can tell you why that is very offensive.

    The important portion of all this news is that the deal was worth $53.5M over 4 years, breaking down to an average of $13.375M/yr. This sets the benchmark for APs contract extension, which will likely be similar to CJ’s and potentially a notch or two more expensive.

    So, the big question is how are we going to manipulate the roster so that we can afford a new deal with AP? The first move should be a new deal for Greenway, who is set to make $10M with the franchise tag. This alone should instantly free up at $4M based on salaries of other LBs with similar traits to #52. But is Chad willing to do that for the long term deal, or is he content with the bigger cotnract and waiting until the offseason, chancing injury, and then sign a new deal after his contract expires?

  22. By TwoodsnVikes on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Yeah I mean it is just contradictory with Berrian, we have the “no nonsense” attitude with McFatty and cut him even with his veteran status, but Berrian can’t catch a ball to save his life and we hold on to him for no reason

  23. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    At least we can all be happy that #28 is showing so much more class than most players would in his position. He’s been showing up for practice, working hard and remaining quiet over all the contract speculation, letting his agent hammer things out.

    We’ve definitely got the best RB on our team. Even if he hasn’t produced quite as spectacular of statistics as one or two others at his position, he’s still always working hard to improve himself, keeping a keen sense of his media image, and showing that he cares more about the team’s success than his own.

  24. By Jdude on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Asher are you kidding me Berrian suck’s in fact I don’t even know why the vikings are keeping him. He is only trying to keep his job. Don’t you people get that. He didn’t do anything for the vikings except for a few measly catches. You should understand that he is just a big woos. Brad Brought him when he first got hear because the bears knew what he would do, nothing. So don’t keep berrian! Keep any of the other guys, they can catch more than Berrian ever could.

  25. By Jdude on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Oh! and I forgot to menchan BRAD CHILDRESS BROUGHT HIM. So know what do think huh, What.

  26. By CA Norwegian on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    BB OK. Keep more linemen, TE’s and backs. It is going to be a pounding year in there..

  27. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    @TwoodsnVikes – Berrian was kept because he is proving to be a team player. He’s not a spectacular WR, but even if he were, he’s not the type who would “play when he wants to play”, strut around like a goof after every reception or start an entire television broadcast about his own awesomeness, (yes, I’m aware that’s not a real word).

    Big Mac was just lazy and cared about his music business more than his team or, more importantly, his QB. He was a cancer to the locker room, and Frazier made the right choice to chop off the defective limb and stop the cancer from spreading.

    To make it clear, I don’t specifically care for Berrian either, but I am aware that the plan does not include him as a featured part of the offense. Hopefully we’ll be lucky enough to send him one or two big throws early in the season, and then allow him to be a decoy to defenses so that the real playmakers (AP, Harvin, McNabb, Shiancoe, Rudolph), have an easier time moving the ball in the short game.

  28. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Jdude – Childress also brought in Peterson, Harvin, Greenway, Allen, and almost every other notable veteran on this team right now, outside of #5. I hate to defend the guy, but it’s hard to argue that Childress didn’t have a rather keen eye for talent.

  29. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Then again, WR talent did appear tough for Childress to locate. Berrian has been mediocre at best, he cut Moss because he couldn’t handle the attitude, he traded for Camarillo but never used him, and he kept guys like Baskett and Lewis on the team with token positions even though neither one produced at all, (okay, Lewis had the one catch in his first year to win the 49er game, but a flash in the pan is a horrible argument to allow a player to take up space on the bench).

  30. By Jdude on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Yes I do realize that but evenchuly he would have realeased all those guys exept for TJack, berrian, and every other bad player he got on the team so he could leave it in ruins.

  31. By Jdude on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Basket sucks though for such a high contract. He let Moss go because in a press confrence Moss said Childress sucks, witch he does. Lewis Is the only guy out of that bunch I respect because he tried harder than Basket, or Berrian. But one thing to ponder is how bolth Basket, and Chilldress Bolth came from Philley and sucked and now we have Donavon. Weird.

  32. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Easy to criticize in hindsight. I do marvel at the TD by Berrian. Sure, McNabb threw a perfect, pinpoint precise pass. BUT if Berrian had not gotten precisely at that pinpoint spot on the field at exactly the precise time with a narrow window of separation, the TD would not have happen. The man does have skill. Argue that all you want, but I will back him up unless by game four he has proven not worthy.

  33. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Childress was a genius for choosing personnel.

  34. By Asher on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Appears Jdude is all Berrianed out! Don’t blame you I guess, but it’s amazing how much of a “no-brainer” cutting Berrian is to some fans on here. With the amount he’s making, do you really think Frazier would keep him if there was clearly a better option than him? Are we at the practices? He’s been McNabb’s go-to target so far in the preseason, so obviously McNabb likes what he sees. In the only preseason game where he looked to throw downfield, Berrian caught the 49-yarder TD catch and would have had a second if it wasn’t underthrown. If that’s not promising that maybe the 2008 Berrian could be back than what do you expect? If that were any of the other receiver but Berrian we’d be juiced about… If the coaches have confidence in him, I will. I was in favor of cutting him if we kept Sidney Rice, but now I’m willing to see how the start of the season shakes out.

  35. By Rick on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I think they should keep Aromashadu and Camerillo under they 3 “locks” they have just my 2 cent’s Aromashadu has looked good enough to make the team and Camerillo reminds me of Welker in a lot of ways not super fast but a good route runner with solid hands

  36. By Asher on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    And for those of you who criticize Berrian for bobbling the TD…that safety was all over that throw. I thought he had knocked it down or picked it off for a sec. That makes it a much difficult catch when a defender is flying in your face.

  37. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Welcome aboard Asher– another voice of reason. Good to see. Let’s trust the coaches and stand behind their decisions. And relax– they are paid the big bucks to do this for a living; I am sure they know a tiny bit more than the average blogger. Just maybe.

  38. By NovaScotiaVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    What about the not-so-average blogger?

  39. By Mike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    The vikings need to give the 4th and 5th receiving spots to aromashodu and igelesis forget camerilo and hid so called sure hands he was a let down last season and his return abilities aren’t good neither he had his chance and did nothing but disappoint us, also I think its time to cut asher allen and keep marcus sherels he clearly out performed him and allen has way more game experience then him he’s not making no progress gives up to many catches and miss to many tackles I don’t know what our coaching staff see in him. Sherels is a ballhawk who knows how to tackle and he can fill our punt return needs if he get cut I don’t know what the coaches are thinking. And give Adrian Peterson his money he’s obviously the most important player on our team and he earned his contract if we lose him watch how much fans we’ll lose to I don’t know what’s taking the owners so long CJ got his deal and AP been in the league before him, I definitly won’t support the Vikings stupidity we pay players who don’t deserve it but lose the ones who earned it.

  40. By Asher on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Thanks Titus. Sometimes you have to balance things out on these blogs. Some people lose faith/patience sooner than they should. I’d be more concerned with Jenkins than Berrian. Berrian has a couple back-to-back ALMOST 1000 yard seasons that indicate what he’s capable of. Jenkins hasn’t come close yet in his 1st 7 seasons. That being said, I’m not concerned about Jenkins either. I think he’ll do a solid job. I do hope Manny makes the squad as well as Aromashadu.

  41. By SO? on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Titus and Asher- I agree with the opinion on Berrian. If he was a rookie and caught that touchdown pass people wouldn’t shut up about how amazing he is!

  42. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Sure, Asher, thanks for saying something. I believe most of the fans stand behind the team, but the bloggers are so passionate that sometimes they get a bit overcritical– understandable. We have had decades of being so close, and it can be painful. I do believe it is too easy to get negative– our culture promotes it so much that when someone is positive they are looked at weird and told they are not realistic. What is reality? Whatever you choose.

  43. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Nova, the not so average blogger is the same species, maybe just a little different voice.

  44. By NovaScotiaVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    KKKKKKKKKKKKKKKIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL HHHHHOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUUSSSSSSSSSSSSTTTTTTTTTTOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNN

  45. By Hawaii Vike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    The Vikings have an okay team, but certainly will not win against the elite teams. While there is talent on the offense, and a new coordinator who seems to go out of the box a little more, this is virtually a new offense that will take some time to gel, and with our schedule, there is no time to gel. Everybody knows that Peterson will be our game plan and that gives away everything. We really have no playmaking receiver, and while Harvin is potentially one, he is too small other than a slot position. Berrian and Jenkins are not play makers, and that would be an understatement. Defense is marginal. Front line could be potentially good, but the DBs probably would struggle to even be on the roster on other teams. Linebackers are pretty good, but they can’t make up for our poor DB play. Teams like Green Bay will just dump it off short and run away from our DBs. It’s a cruel joke. We will have our share of scores, but we won’t be able to catch up from our poor defense, especially the poor DBs we have. 100% guarantee that Winfiield willl not be healthy for the whole season, and without him, the DBs are pretty much bad. It is going to be a long season. On a positive note, I think the coaching staff have done great with what they were left with. But coaches can only do so much. The players have to execute, and there is not enough talent on this team to rise to the playoffs, let alone the big one.

  46. By VegasVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I feel at this point of the season the is way too much emphasis put on BB. This one soul will not make or break our season. I for one am more worried about that crazy secondary that hinges on the health of two guys. If they go down again I’m gonna change my name to VegasYikes! Perception is reality, and that’s my perception

  47. By VegasVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    “there is” DYAC

  48. By DRS on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Is this the year for the Vikings, is the Vikings fan creed for all these years, 19XX, 20XX. Will there be a 2012? Who knows? This year hopefully, for there may be no more MN Vikings next year. The Vikings have always figured out how to come up short in whatever they do, SB, players, so on and so on. I truly hope this is the year for the big win so that MN will get behind the team and get them a new Stadium.

  49. By DRS on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Time after time we hear how good the Vikings are, and time after time we are misled and they fail to go all-the-way. It gets hard to keep the faith. Though we the fans do, but for how long?

  50. By NovaScotiaVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    AS LONG AS I BREATHE.

  51. By VegasVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I for one Titus, shall always bleed purple.

  52. By Asher on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I kinda agree with you Hawaii Vike, but the optimist sees potential room for hope. In 2009 we had an unproven receiving corps (Berrian, rookie Harvin, and injury-prone Rice) and a washed-up QB that had just undergone elbow surgery. They become one of the most potent offenses that year after starting off shaky in the passing game. This year, if Griffin and Winfield stay healthy and solid, the secondary will be fine. I don’t think it would be a shocker for that to happen. Similarly, it’s not a stretch that Chris Cook could play pretty well, especially if he stays healthy and steadily improves each week. Our LBs are our most proven unit right now. Our DL could go either way. Williams, Ayodele, Ballard, Allen, Griffen, and Robison could be (as a unit) a more dominant group than the 2009 DL. I think that group has more pass-rushing speed, though they may not be as stout against the run. If our OL plays well (doesn’t need to be GREAT) I think our offense will put up some points. That’s my biggest question mark — the OL. We have 4 of 5 starters from 2009. Can they man up and quiet the critics? Last preseason game was promising. With Shank, Rudolph, Percy, AP, Berrian, Jenkins, Gerhart, and Booker all options in the passing game (and Webb providing a yet-to-be-determined demension), we don’t really need a dynamic receiver to have a potent attack. New England proved it last year when they traded Moss and spread the ball around. But that being said…that’s a lot of IFs and it doesn’t take much for things to unravel.

  53. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    In reference to the Berrian TD, I was pleasantly surprised when it happened and ready to turn my viewpoint of him around. Then, later on in the game he dropped a couple of throws, at least one of which should have been an easier grab than the TD, so that’s why I’m still not sold on the guy. Maybe he just needs a little more time to sync up with his new QB, and maybe my expectations are too high after growing up with Carter & Carter, then Moss, and most recently Rice. I just want to see a #1 WR once more with those soft hands that stick to everything they touch.

  54. By Viking Joe on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Let’s have some faith in the secondary, there only as good as the front four, get some pressure on the QB and there will be no complaints about our DB’s.

  55. By Asher on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    That being said…my gut tells me we won’t be in the playoffs this year. It’s a possibility but we’ve got an uphill battle in our division much less the NFC. Every win is going to be sweet! That’s the exciting part of having low expectations. If we beat San Diego in the season opener on the road I’ll be euphoric!

  56. By Viking Joe on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I believe 4-2 in the division is possible, and 6-4 for the rest of the games, 10-6 should earn us a wildcard spot.

  57. By VikeFan on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    @Viking Joe They go hand in hand, When the Defensive backs choose to cover. It forces the opposing QB to wait longer than the 3,4, 5 step drop. Then the pressure comes in. But when the backs play 10 – 15 yds off the LS on 3rd and 5-10 yds well. Then that’s ALL the Defensive backs fault, and I can only imagine the frustration how the Defensive line can bust their but+s only to have them throw to an open receiver. Its old for the team and the fans. The secondary needs to step up this year.

  58. By Skol_Vikes98 on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I’m really worried about the Salary cap…… Were going to need to pay AP, but we can’t pay him Johnson style money and keep our team intact…..

  59. By Daniel on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    5 things I am looking for is: 1. Our line. What gets through, and how they hold up. Not to be negative, but our reserve O-line has not much talent at all. I like Love a little, and Fussco, and degare. But other than that, we have way below average guys on our line. 2. I want to see Ballard get another strike. This guy has a future here and belongs in rotation with guchie guion. Guion is gettn good fellas. I have a feeling Guion will have a better year than nick Fairley of the Lions. Oh by the way, Guion is as old as Fairley too. So who ever decided to pick up Guion knows thier stuff. 3. Saftey, Saftey, Saftey. Tonight will determin the starter. Coverage should be key. I don`t care if they can run through a brick wall….Can they cover? 4. How will Asher do? He better lock it down tonight or he is off my fan list. 5. I am looking for Eversons performance and calab King. King may blow it up. Griffen too. We will see. Much love fellas. Go Vikes!

  60. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Daniel – I think your expectations for reserve offensive linemen are too high. The team is only likely to keep 3 reserve players, MAYBE 4. So if you like 3 of them, then it’s safe to say that we’re fine in that arena.

    Is Asher on the active roster today? I haven’t heard an injury update yet, but if he isn’t able to play today then he shouldn’t make the team, because he has been unable to prove himself better than the other guys fighting for the 4th and 5th spots on the depth chart.

    It will be interesting to see who makes the final cuts after today’s game, and I’m sure we’ll all have some interesting insight into what the team SHOULD do. I look forward to reading everyone’s opinion!

  61. By Rogerthevikefan on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    CBs should be:
    Winfield
    Griffin
    Cook
    Sherels
    Burton
    Torrance or Parks other gets Practice squad
    Allen cut

  62. By Rogerthevikefan on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    You live and die a Vikes fan.

  63. By Mike B. on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    @titus someof us don’t slap on the blinders and say yeah we are the best where there are clearly wholes.

  64. By Mike B. on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    @Roger For some reason I am not sure of Asher Allen has get on the team card even vikings daily predicts he will be on the team.

  65. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    We’ve been talking a lot about our expectations and opinions of Berrian in the past few weeks, but what does everyone think of Jenkins? Both players were drafted in the same year, (Jenkins 1st round, Berrian 3rd). Jenkins is a little faster than Berrian, but the two have relatively similar career stats so far.

    I personally think that Jenkins has everything needed to move into the #1 position, and I have liked the few plays that I saw come his way, where he had to fight for position on the ball and came up with a tough catch. Ultimately, I think it will all depend on how often McNabb targets him, but I like his potential.

  66. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Good points Mike B. While I have a t times agreed with Titus, I think that being overly optimistic and non=critical serves little purpose other than CHEERLEADING>……..not sure I want to see Titus in the MVC squad……..outfits might be the deal killer…….

  67. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Titus-
    If by Childress being a genius, you refer to him being misunderstood, I a gree, since I could never understand WTF hewas talkin bout….

  68. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    To be fair Rocksalt, it’s always more fun watching Ragnar dance in the endzone than it is watching the cheerleading squad!

  69. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Texans are gonna be tough,,,,,,no pliates in their training….

  70. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Parody-
    as ;long as Rgnar or Titus do not try and wear the Cheerleaders uni’s

  71. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Ponder the sprinter…

  72. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Announcers just said that DeGeare came in overweight. I never heard that news before. Does anyone know if that was true, or did the announcers just mix up our young guard with Big Mac?

  73. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Nova? Shawn? Moorevikes, Fred , Woodboat….Where ya at?

  74. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    soooo……..whay just cut someone for being overweight? Why not put them on a diet or pilates?

  75. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    2nd & 19……..3rd & 19……….

  76. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    camawho?

  77. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Rocksalt – Are you refferring to McKinnie? I don’t think he was cut JUST for being overweight. He seemed to have a poor attitude and work ethic as well.

  78. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Hawaii Vike-
    You view is the consensus amongst the NFL pundits……..

  79. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Parody-
    I do not know about Mckinnies attittude, but the organization said he was cut fer bein fat……

  80. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    good job vikes D

  81. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    The organization likes to keep their explanations short and simple for things like that. If they went on to point out ALL of their reasons, it’s a lot more likely that McFattie would come back and attack the organization and they’d begin a feud over it.

  82. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    ok parody- do you have insider info? how do you know what the org. does?

  83. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    inc…….

  84. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    C’mon Ponder! KLUWE Having good game…..

  85. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I don’t Rocksalt. It just seems like common sense to me.

  86. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    DRS:
    YAY MN Repugnicants! VOTE NO on EVERYTHING….YAY!!!!

  87. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    It’s like when you listen to coaches talk…you can just tell that they’re hiding their true feelings about things all the time. I remember watching a conference of Frazier and they asked about the reason for cutting McKinnie. Leslie dodged the question all together saying something along the lines of “I hope he does well wherever he ends up.”

  88. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    NO STADIUM..YAY!
    NO NFL TEAM…YAY!
    NO NEW JOBS…YAY!
    NO TAXES FOR CORPORATIONS…YAY!
    CUT STUDENT AID…YAY!
    CUT MEDICARE…YAY!
    NO TAXES..JUST RAISE USER FEES…YAY!

  89. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Oooh, I just cycled 51 miles in this heat– wanted to round it out to 60, but thought I better get home to see the game– looks like not much is happening. Maybe Webb will be number 2.

  90. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    51 miles, Titus…….you are really training….

  91. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Johnson should have had that one. Now Sanford gets the nod for the starting spot after that mix up.

  92. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    yup.

  93. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    YAY Brad Childress..YAY!

  94. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    camawhoooo?

  95. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Nice throw.

  96. By Brad Childress on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I am still the coach

  97. By Brad Childress on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Brett……please come back!

  98. By Brad Childress on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I will give you top billing on the tag site…

  99. By Brad Childress on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    and keys to my sweet ride…..

  100. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Nice Ponder!

  101. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    nice!

  102. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    ponder lookin good……

  103. By NovaScotiaVike on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    FRAN PONDER!!!!!!!!!!!!

  104. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Nova!!!!
    yes he is scamblin……….how the h3ll are ya buddy?

  105. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Was that because the site won’t allow you to say Chrîstian Ponder?

  106. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    SCAMBLIN FRAN!..referwnce to Tarkenton!

  107. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    got disconnected……darn pcs…….

  108. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Hey, you guys also see the resemblance to Fran? Yeah, Ponder is lookin’ good.

  109. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Wow, kick deflected. That looked like a gimme FG too…

  110. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I wasn’t around to see Fran, so the closest comparison I can make is a weaker, but smarter & more accurate Culpepper.

  111. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Ponder lookin good…..let’s go Joe Webb 2nd half!

  112. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Parody-
    Fran was THE ORIGINAL MOBILE QB……..

  113. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    not smarter or more accurate than Fran……….

  114. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Fran da man!

  115. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Give him time, maybe Ponder will outshine Fran.

    You never know…

  116. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    perhaps, but till then Fran is DA MAN!

  117. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Fran was way ahead of his time– now every QB tries to be like him.

  118. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I never was too impressed with Culpepper.

  119. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Well, Culpepper was the closest thing we’ve ever had to a franchise QB in my lifetime, so I was a pretty big fan of his.

  120. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I agree, Titus, I never was completely sold on Culpepper……….He had one stellar season, but then declined……

  121. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Parody-
    Check out old footage of 70’s Vikes with Fran…….

  122. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I have tried, but the video quality is so poor that I can’t put up with it for very long.

  123. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I didn’t like what I just saw from Hill there. The ball was in the air forever, and he never made a move to knock it down.

  124. By Rocksalt on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    D@mn……. Scramblin Fran gave fits to all Defgensive linemen of the 70’s…Deacon Jones, Bubba Smith, Mean Joe Greene, et all

  125. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Culpepper seemed to play okay but was inconsistent– seemed to get rattled and make an inaccurate throw at the worst times. And his celebration! Ugh.

  126. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    It would have been nice to see Ponder try to make a few throws from inside the pocket. It seemed like he was chasing to the bootleg almost immediately every time.

  127. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Ponder has a lot to learn, but that is normal– he is a rookie.

  128. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Are you sure Titus? You guys keep on comparing him to a Hall of Famer…

  129. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    The seeds of a hall of famer are there, Parody. We have yet to see if the tree matures.

  130. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    So…you’re suggesting that we cover Ponder in fertilizer? Somehow that doesn’t sound like a great idea. I thought the team decided to quit hazing rookies…

  131. By Titus on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    And plenty of water and sunshine.

  132. By Parody on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Vikings put up the blowout/shutout! Can’t ask for much more than that.

  133. By Viking Joe on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Well we will all learn soon who made the opening day roster.

  134. By VikingFanNY on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    The only thing that sucks about being a viking fan…….living in new york haha never get to see any games. I’m moving to St. Paul!!!

  135. By Frederick Jones on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    @Viking Joe,

    I tend to think your prediction of a Viking 10-6 season is about right.

    It’s hard to account for injuries, and such. Those things, plus tough opponents, make it difficult to make the playoffs.

    It’s easy to imagine the Vikings contending for the division title.

  136. By Viking Joe on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    Hopefully the Vikings won’t have any major injury issues, though Williams’ foot injury is a major concern.

  137. By VIKINGS FAN 63 on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    aint nobody showing any love for brandon fusco the kid can flat out play he had a heck of a game and key blocks on 3 touchdowns this kid will make any team if he is gonna try and be snuk onto the practice squad

  138. By Kenny on Sep 1, 2011 | Reply

    I hate to say it, but i think asher allen makes the team over Sherels. I love Sherels and how he seem to be around the ball all the time. I just think Allen makes it because of more experiance. He played some major minutes last season and was not half bad. My thinking is that he showed coaches the same potential that sherels has shown them now. Sherels is still unproven in games that count and allen has played decent with potential for more last season so that believe that will be the deciding factor. I cant understand way Allen has had bad camp, especially since he did well last season. I would keep allen and cut burton over sherels. I am more concerned with our strong safety spot. I am on the west coast and will have to watch the reply on NFl network so i did’nt get a chance to see the battle between Sanforn and johnson. Who looked better? I do not like what i’ve seen from either in 1st 3 games so far

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