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Additional Minnesota Viking Commentary

Dysfunctional Offense 
Sure, each week we face another teams defense, so you have to be careful in your evaluations, but one thing is for certain.  Coach Flip is now entertaining the league in his job interview for his 2019 head coaching gig & he's certainly not confident in his approach ... but he can remove his head from his ass & change that.  If both Head Coach Mike Zimmer & Coach Flip want to make that happen, and they do, then they need to look no further than in the mirror ... as they are making the decisions.  Good thing its no longer fashionable to laugh at idiotic behavior.    
First of all, regardless of who is manning that offensive line, Dalvin Cook is going to rip off a big chunk of yards, just as Adrian Peterson did on Monday night as those legs & power are explosive ... but that's not the point.  The point is to be able to control the outcome in the running game ... to secure the confidence in calling it ... rather than to solely rely, and then point to ... some random big hitter.  A one dimension offense is a recipe for disaster.  Everyone knows it & it all starts with curtailing the options available on offensive run calls ... as a quarterback always thinks he knows better.  Maybe you might recall Tom Landry subbing in two quarterbacks ... to get his message across ... to secure his first Super Bowl Title.  The message to the offense must be clear & unquestioned, "We've got to win on 1st & 2nd down (beyond the first quarter), even if it is only for 2 or 3 yards.  When a defense knows you're going to pass on just about every down ... you've lost regardless if you think your attempt at an 18 yard-er can beat a 3 yard run ... "The Dan Marino Complex".  Danny boy always thought the tail wagging the dog was the way to go.  You clearly have the most explosive runner in the league in the 3rd & 4th quarter & you've conveniently shelved that option making everyone's job a whole lot easier.  And yes, it doesn't matter whether your ahead, tied or behind on the score board, as a back breaking run can change the outcome of any game.  That's right Flip & Kirk ... you are your own worst enemies.        

To be direct, anyone worth a crap can clearly see that the confidence in our run game has a day & night difference when Danny Isidora is manning left guard.  Regardless of Tom Compton's two back breaking offensive hold calls versus the Patriots, he's serviceable but he's a definite liability to the confidence in our run game.  You have no argument from me in considering Danny Isidora's almost vertical learning curve, due in part to his lack of experience, but Coach Zimmer has no one to blame but himself for not realizing potential versus settling for experience.  The question that Coach Zimmer must come to grips with is does he sacrifice the teams abilities versus submitting to the demands of satiating Kirk Cousin's flawed reasoning.  After all, the reasoning of trying to hold onto the ball in a flawed pocket shouldn't be the objective as everything comes down to execution.         

It was alarming to hear about Pat Elflein's liability of handling a tackle on his nose in pass coverage, especially on defensive line stunts, all the while having people gush on his speed in pulling on sweep, screens, etc.  In other words, his strength has been negated by our lack of developing Dalvin Cook.

Traveling on the road to Seattle ... if you don't have the run, screen & wide receiver screen game fully developed ... you've lost.

Which leads me to Laquon Treadwell.  Change your bad luck number 11 immediately ... in fact the owner should retire that number along with our 4 super bowl losses.  If you're planning to throw to either Diggs or Theilen on the edge ... Treadwell should be blocking on the edge.  He should also be used like Patterson on the edge as his physical size & strength might provide a nightmare to influence the attrition on defensive corners.  He should also be used on red zone 3rd & goal of more than 2 yards as he & Rudolph can fight for balls.  

The concept that any player can take on any role if absolutely flawed.  Even a moron knows its all about match-ups ... having to deal with what we do best.  In other words, If you're planning on spreading out the defense, you must come to grips with your primary weapons which include Robinson, Diggs & Theilen (unless injured).  Time & again it has become clear that Treadwell is viable but not clutch where he's a liability, especially on 3rd down.  Look at it this way, if Thielen dropped a 3rd down pass, you're in shock.  You can't same the same thing for Treadwell.  His stats in this regard don't lie.  On the other hand, Aldrick Robinson has accumulated an impressive list of touch downs this year & has proven his worth as a clutch receiver when it counts.  Robinson has also clearly demonstrated his ability at gaining separation where the Patriots interception in the end zone was a slight tip from being a very different result.  Also, in head coach Mike Zimmer's discussions with Kirk Cousins, the very first item on his agenda should be to curtail Kirk Cousin's throwing the ball 18 yards down the field on a 3rd & 2.  Also, on a 2nd down & short, how is it that Coach Flip is allowed to unleash his powerful running game then, for no gain when this is the perfect opportunity to throw the ball down the field for either a chunk play, pass interference or an over the top TD.  Every time I've seen this idiotic type play calling, I've been tempted to put my shoe through my television set.  

Is anyone on the planet shocked when our kicker misses a field goal or an extra point ... regardless of whether its indoors or outdoors ... and what does that tell you?  Maybe it's time for Head Coach Mike Zimmer to send a message that cannot be misconstrued by anyone within this franchise.  This Viking defense, when used & applied properly, is designed to hold any team to field goals.  It is clear that we cannot rely on any field goal or extra point for that matter.  We are going to score touchdowns or we are going to die together on this field, which hopefully will change everyone's focus.  That is where we find ourselves today.  This directive comes directly from the ancient text, "The Art of War".  That is the true message of Diggs miracle catch & Blair Walsh's missed playoff kick.  Ignore it at your own peril ... as to change the result, you need to change the game.  Now apply this directive to every game ... because ... after all ... you can't do this.  So Head Coach Mike Zimmer ... did you see the game ... did you see all of them ... did you see the last one?  Screw it boys ... my back is against the wall.  The development of a new approach can no longer be considered irrational ... it's just another potential solution to a very real problem.  Adam Vinatieri doesn't work for this franchise so your percentages just don't either work or apply here.  It might work for those that make book but not for head coaches trying to win games.  That's what they asked me to do.   

How can you not know this?  Using Dalvin Cook on short crossers, as well as middle screens can be quite potent.  In the former, even in zone defenses, he's going to attract allot of attention as those linebackers will have no choice but to protect the alley and the seams.  He can break any tackle and he cannot be covered one on one.  Just using the crossers alone will upset any defense ever created.  Just hit one, and we revisit the greatest show on turf, and the applied pressure to the offensive line dissipates dramatically.  Hold him in to block ... and the pressure ensues & they win.  Either you apply never ending pressure to the defense or they'll apply it to you.  As for the middle screen, that's where the strength of your offensive line will shine (Isidora, Elflein & Remmers).  Stop trying to always attack the edges as some of those hits are even more ferocious than that delivered in the middle of the field.  DB's go for the legs.  
"Our running backs Dalvin Cook & Latavius Murray got 17 touches & targets through the air today ... do you think those should be counted as part of our run game?  When we win the game ... maybe we should think it should."  "If they are doubling Diggs & Theilen maybe this should have been a no brainier."

Here's the problem boys.  For Belichick & Brady ... on the field they could say at any time ... we've been here before.  In other words, they can quickly adjust on the field.  Now consider the number of Viking starts for both Cook & Cousins.  They look like babes in the woods ... and that is because that is exactly what they are ... as they cannot adjust on the fly.  Imagine the day when it finally clicks ... when it all comes together.  It's got to happen soon ... as this franchises oldest supporters are dieing.  Just look at the mounting list of Viking players that are no longer with us ... that have never known a Viking Super Bowl victory.   Always keep in mind that what's happened in either your recent past (Ram's, Saints, Patriots & Bears) ... or long term past for that matter... doesn't track your future ... unless you let it.

Now consider this statement ... The season is not over until this Viking Franchise says it is.  Now pull yourselves up by your boot straps boys.  That's what's on the table.  "All that I want to do is realize that very thing".  Seeding & location doesn't mean jack ... as long as its not in Tulane Stadium, or the Rose Bowl.  Maybe you'd rather play it indoors on a fast track.  

The Viking Ghost Writer
Date: December 4, 2018