Through the first five games of the season, the Vikings defense was up to its old tricks of shutting down the opponent’s rushing attack. The Vikings permitted just 3.1 yards per carry and 1 rushing TD over the first five games, and they collected 37 tackles for loss against the run in that same span.
Over the last three games, however, the tides have turned. A fundamentally sound and gap strong run defense turned leaky. Washingon, Arizona and Tampa Bay combined to rush for 468 yards and 5 TDs on 99 carries, production few teams have been able to muster against Leslie Frazier’s defense in Minnesota.
And it has the Vikings head coach concerned, especially with Seattle RB Marshawn Lynch up next for the Vikings.
“I’m concerned,” Frazier acknowledged on Monday. “We have to shore up our run game and the running back we’re facing on Sunday, in my mind, he’s one of the best in our business so we better get our run game fixed in a hurry.”
Frazier singled out missed tackles and poor gap integrity as reasons the Vikings have surrendered the rushing yards they have in recent weeks, and he explained that the defense focused on those issues during Monday’s practice.
“One of the things today that we did was we did a review on some of our run fits, whether it was seven-man fronts or eight-man fronts, just to make sure we all understand where we have to be and where we have to fit up runs,” Frazier said. “We have to improve in that area.
“We haven’t changed our run fits in a long, long time. We didn’t execute as well as we needed to and it cost us. We have to get it fixed and we will.”
Tags: Leslie Frazier
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 103 Comments »
The disadvantage to playing on NFL Network’s Thursday Night Football is that you must quickly move on from a Sunday game and prepare for a Thursday game in a manner of 72 hours. The advantage to playing on Thursday night is you get a few extra days over the ensuing weekend to A)recover from the previous two games over four days, and B) prepare for the next opponent.
The Vikings have moved on to the “B” part of the advantage. After licking their wounds from a Thursday night loss to Tampa Bay, the Vikings will return to work on Monday and begin on-field preparations for their game this Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks. The Vikings will hold a mid-morning practice at Winter Park on Monday, have their customary day off on Tuesday, and then resume a normal practice schedule on Wednesday-Saturday before flying to Seattle on Saturday afternoon.
Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier will meet with reporters after Monday morning’s practice at approximately 11:15 a.m., and we’ll of course have that for you on vikings.com. So stay tuned for that as well as other updates today and throughout the week.
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 242 Comments »
Vikings center John Sullivan is donating $150,000 to make a new University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital playground possible. To support Sullivan’s efforts, Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway, has donated $25,000 through his Lead the Way Foundation while the Vikings organization – through the Vikings Children’s Fund – has contributed the remaining $25,000 for the $200,000 project.
A ceremony will take place on Tuesday to name the playground and reveal renderings of the future project, which is set to open in Spring 2013. During the event, the playground will be officially named “Sullivan Playground” in Sullivan’s honor. Children wearing “Team Sullivan” t-shirts will celebrate the naming and refreshments will be served.
Immediately following the ceremony, Sullivan, along with teammates Brandon Fusco, Greenway, Charlie Johnson, Tyrone McKenzie, Kyle Rudolph and others, will host a “Halloween Huddle” for patients and their families in the lobby of University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital. The players will then make bedside visits throughout the hospital.
About the Sullivan Playground
Just outside of University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital will be the Sullivan Playground for patients and their siblings. The play space is secure, private and comfortable. Working with Landscape Structures, a Minnesota company focused on designing inclusive playgrounds for children of all abilities, Amplatz Children’s Hospital child rehabilitation therapists and child-family life specialists selected a variety of activities and structures that are fun and appropriate for all children, regardless of age and medical conditions. This playground and design will incorporate therapeutic, sensory and development elements as well as an innovative mixture of climbing, discovery, sliding, spinning and social function that are necessary for our patient and sibling population. The unique features have exploration elements with ground level interaction. As the first commercial outdoor slide ever made to accommodate children with IVs, the custom designed posts and attachments allow patients to climb ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) stairs and go down the roller slide without disconnecting from their devices.
Tags: Brandon Fusco, Chad Greenway, Charlie Johnson, John Sullivan, Kyle Rudolph, Tyrone McKenzie
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 9 Comments »