Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Vikings (should be) in panic mode

Last week, after getting housed by the Eagles, I said the Vikings either had a bad game (which everybody has- aside from the Patriots), or it was a sign of things to come. After last night, against the lowly Bears, unfortunately it's the latter.

The Vikings should be in full-blown panic mode.

For the second straight week, the offensive line was an embarrassment, and if I were Mike Zimmer, I would've had my foot up their fourth point of contact.

I understand the attrition on the O-line, but that kind of performance, especially against a bad team, is inexcusable, and hopefully they take a long look in the mirror, while grabbing their manhood like they got a pair, and realize this is a man's sport, and they need to start playing like it.

I will say this, the Dallas Cowboys are widely considered to have the best offensive line in football, and if they were to lose their starting two tackles, even they would obviously not be as dominant, so to think the Vikings should be even average on the line is optimistic at best.

But even more concerning than the offensive line is the defense.

That's two weeks in a row that the D hasn't been able to get any pressure on the QB- the M.O. of the Vikes defense. Throw in some dreadful tackling, and a suspect pass defense, and the Vikings defense has become above average when many were anointing them as the league's best.

A week after getting manhandled by a decimated Eagles offensive line- one that got worked a week before by the Redskins- the Vikings front seven once again had nothing against the 1-6 Bears.

Let me repeat, the 1-6 Bears.

All I can muster, is that football is a one-play-at-a-time sport, and you either win that play, or you don't. I realize the simplicity in that, but it really is that simple, and the Vikings defense, for the last two weeks, has gotten whooped on more plays than not.

And the talks of being a "historically great" defense are now shelved.

The '85 Bears. The '00 Ravens. The '02 Buccaneers. The '13 Seahawks. Even throw in last year's Broncos, who were statistically one of the best defenses ever. Those defenses are known as historically great.

Why?

Because not only were they stifling, but they carried hideous offenses. That's what made them historic, and that's how all-time great defenses are measured; Even when your offense isn't producing, do you still remain dominant?

The '00 Ravens didn't score an offensive touchdown for over 2 games, and were downright terrible (except for Jamal Lewis), yet still won the Super Bowl because Ray Lewis and Co. wouldn't let themselves be affected by Trent Dilfer's ineptness on offense. No matter how many 3 and outs the offense had, the Ravens D persevered. They were great, and the same can be said for the other defenses, as well.

The Vikings seem to be greatly affected by the offenses struggles.

Last night, the Vikings offense was pathetic, as it was the week before against a solid Eagles defense.

Both times, the Vikings defense seemed to be affected by this. I understand a certain synergy on a football team; the offense feeds off the defense and visa-versa, blah blah blah. But when you know you need to carry the other, letting yourself pout over the other's performance, and letting your play slack because of it, is a sign of weakness.

It would have been blasphemy to have considered the 2000 Ravens weak, but the Vikings, for the last two weeks, have been exactly that.

The Vikings season seems to be hanging by a thread, even at 5-2, and it's obvious that the offense will continue to struggle, unless the offensive line has an unexpected wake-up call.

So that leaves it up to the defense. Even if the offense doesn't score the rest of the season, the Vikes D needs to pull a '00 Ravens, and dominate in spite of the offense.

It's the Vikings only hope.






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