PRACTICE MAKES PROGRESS
It wasn’t too pretty but the first team offense did make progress simply by playing together for an extended time but it is so clear that they need more work that Brad Childress is considering putting the offensive starters out on the field again for the final preseason game.
Percy Harvin: Just seeing him on the field was awesome, let alone that opening 34 yard reception.
Greg Camarillo runs tight routes, can find the soft spot in the zone, and he catches everything! Looks like Favre already has confidence in him. The guy’s looking at a career year.
Adrian Peterson‘s nice one-handed nab of a swing pass, his perfectly executed screen pass reception, and his touchdown run during which he blew through a tackle and made another defender miss. Looks like he’s found the step he lost last year.
He catches a low ball on a slant route. He catches another on a curl. He gets decked on another curl route but hangs on to make a first down. Shankopotomous looks like he’s in midseason form.
Antoine Winfield made some nice tackles. Looks like he’s back!
Chris Cook made some Winfieldesque open-field tackles. Was it enough to lock up the left side starting corner position?
Darius Reynaud!! A punt return of 74 yards during which he found a seam, exploded through it, made the kicker miss, and…couldn’t outrun the last defender. He did, however, know to protect the ball by switching it to his outside arm as the defender approached.
He makes people miss on his kick returns. He’s got some moves coming out of the backfield and it looks like he can block.
Is Reynaud our third-down back as well as our kick returner?
Javon Walker. Though his buddy Brett Favre didn’t throw him an easy pass (and he should’ve caught at least one of them), he did come down with the catch of the game on a toss from Sage Rosenfels that he ripped away from the defender for a touchdown.
Walker will make the team. He gives us a big, physical presence at receiver that we currently do not have. You gotta feel good for this guy trying to make his comeback.
Brian Robison continues to kick butt, consistently creating pressure that causes sacks. Could this guy be trade bait?
Bernard Berrian lets a pass sail through his hands; he misses a block on a wide receiver screen to Percy Harvin that results in a tackle for a loss; he pops a ball he should’ve caught into the air to let Earl Thomas pick it off and return it 86 yards for a touchdown; he fails to go get Brett Favre‘s perfectly placed long ball; and his first catch comes with six minutes left in the second quarter.
The swim movie Chris Clemons used to easily get by Bryant McKinnie on the sack play during which Brett Favre had his finger stepped on.
Adrian Peterson‘s failure to pick up Collin Cole on the play in which Favre underhanded the ball for an incompletion to avoid the sack.
Hussein Abdullah gave up a big pass on a play where he was supposed to help Winfield; he was poorly positioned on a missed tackle that allows Mike Williams to gain a lot more YAC.
Rhys Lloyd – One kick one yard deep into the end zone. Is that worth tying up an extra roster spot?
Our safeties – no one stood out.
ROOKIE LEARNING CURVE
Guard Chris DeGeare executed a perfect seal block to open a hole for his running back but he also failed to pick up a defensive lineman on a stunt.
GERHART VS. YOUNG
I’m impressed with Toby Gerhart. He’s got quick feet, good hands, and he’s a strong kid who always seems to make positive yards. He could use a little patience, though.
Albert Young, on the other hand, really doesn’t feel like a guy you’re going to feel real confident about doing much damage when he subs in to give Peterson a spell. He really doesn’t move pile. But Young can block and pick up a blitz, as he did to allow Sage Rosenfels time to throw the touchdown jump ball to Javon Walker.
So there’s that. If Gerhart can prove he can block and pick up a blitz, don’t be surprised to see him second on the depth chart come opening day.
Is Tarvaris Jackson a Gerhart fan? You could be forgiven for thinking so, given the way he hung Young out to dry on that swing pass.
D’IMPERIO VS. TAHI
It’s no secret I”m not a fan of Nafahu Tahi, so I was happy to see rookie fullback Ryan D’Imperio have such an awesome game. He had a nice block; converted a first down on fourth and one; and caught the nice closing TD from Joe Webb, stayed on his feet, and stretched to put the ball across the end zone.
Then he follows up his touchdown with a special teams tackle on the following kickoff, despite getting flattened as he ran down the field.
I haven’t seen enough of D’Imperio to compare his blocking to Tahi’s but my guess is it couldn’t be much worse. We’ll see next week. What does seem clear is he gives you more yardage out of the fullback position than Tahi, who usually gets tackled on the first try when he carries the ball.
But then Nafahu Tahi goes and hurdles a defender to mess with my argument.
Still, I’ll take D’Imperio.
For hanging me out to dry. Love, Percy
For even knowing what position I play. Love, Chris DeGeare.
During a sideline interview, Favre talked about the offensive line: “We had a couple of protection issues, which you can understand. Moving Anthony over to center–he’s really our third center–and the new guy at right guard.”
You had to cringe when watching Ray Edwards absolutely blow by Shawn Locklear when Edwards did his best imitation of Alan Page anticipating the snap.
Former Gopher and current backup cornerback Marcus Sherels made a nice pick late in the game and brought it down the sidelines only…to….get…caught…by…the quarterback! Owwwwwch!
This is better than Bernard Berrian saying the Vikings are the team best prepared for dealing with distractions outside of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Ian Johnson to Darius Reynaud after Reynaud’s 74 yard kick return for a non-touchdown: “You know the truth? You just went from an 89 speed on Madden, with the update coming up, to a 78.”
Dude. That’s just mean.
Ian Johnson to Darius Reynaud after Reynaud explained that he slowed down because he switched the ball to his outside hand during his 74 yard kick return for a non-touchdown: “Don’t switch it. Just run.”
UM, NOT SO MUCH
Ari Wolfe claimed Logan Payne could make the team because he’s “very good on special teams.”
Well, actually, that’s the weakest part of his game, Ari.
Payne did make the most of his chances again this week, though.
Aside from Brett Favre possibly losing a fingernail, we wouldn’t know anything about the injuries, would we?
Because though the television crew said Chris Cook was taken out of the game due to a knee injury, did not follow up on the injury.
Because though the camera showed a Viking defender went down and was being attended to on the field, the TV crew did not even acknowledge the injury or even identify who the Viking was.
Was more important to Mike Mayock and Ari Wolfe than telling viewers what penalty the Vikings committed that gave the Seahawks a first down in the red zone during their first drive of the second half. (It appeared to be a roughing the quarterback penalty because Ray Edwards plowed right through Matt Hasselbeck on the play.)
Did Mike Mayock really call Mark Wilf sassy? Sassy?
Who needs eye black when you’ve got Jimmy Kleinsasser‘s beard? He’s just gotta let that thing grow till it reaches the bottom of his eyelids and he’s set.
The Vikings vs. Seahawks game will be rebroadcast on Fox Sports Net and on the NFL Network:
FSN Replay Schedule
Aug. 30 :: Sunday :: 11:00 p.m.
Aug. 30 :: Saturday :: 6:00 p.m.
NFL Network Replay Schedule
Aug. 28 :: Saturday :: 10:00 p.m.
Aug. 29 :: Sunday :: 6 a.m.
Aug. 31 :: Tuesday :: 7 p.m.
Sept. 2 :: Thursday :: 2 p.m.
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