There’s a reason all the storylines going into tomorrow night’s game are about reunions:
- Kirk Cousins facing his old team
- Adrian Peterson facing his old team
- Case Keenum facing his old team
- The Minneapolis Miracle reunion of Stefon Diggs and Case Keenum
It is appropriate this week’s game is being played on a Throwback Thursday because the future is a foregone conclusion: Vikings win.
Washington has three players on offense the Vikings need to focus on: Case Keenum, Adrian Peterson and wide receiver Terry McLaurin. So, stop the run, double team McLaurin and get after Keenum.
On defense, Washington is banged up. Four defensive players did not practice on Tuesday and the team has five defensive players on IR. Washington is giving up an average of 25 points a game. The only win on their schedule was by a margin of one point to the worst team in the league.
It is telling that Pete Bercich uses only footage from Washington’s sole victory over the winless Miami Dolphins, who are ranked 32nd in The Athletic‘s power rankings this week. (I’ve cued up Bercich’s part to spare you the insufferable Paul Allen).
I will not be surprised at all if the Vikings gameplan against Washington looks a lot like the gameplan Kevin Stefanski employed against the Lions.
Adrian Peterson Returns: Whose Better, Him Or Dalvin Cook?
With Adrian Peterson coming to town and with Dalvin Cook leading the league in rushing, the Peterson vs. Cook conversation was inevitable even if it’s pretty much an apples to oranges comparison.
For me, I think Dalvin Cook is the better running back, no question. He’s just as fast as Peterson was. He’s got power, just like Peterson. He’s got vision, just like Peterson. He’s got a devastating jump cut and other moves, just like Peterson.
But he’s also a better receiver and a far better pass protector. And he appears to have the desire to improve, which I think Peterson lacks.
Remember all the talk about Adrian Peterson promising to improve on securing the ball? It didn’t really happen. He didn’t have much of an interest in pass blocking and he always wanted to run from a deep I formation.
As a pure runner, I give the nod to Peterson. He will be a first ballot Hall of Fame inductee on that ability alone, which currently puts him in the top ten running backs of all time.
But Peterson is one dimensional.
Cook, on the other hand, provides all-around value to the Vikings.
Again, this is an apples to oranges comparison because, at the very least, Cook is a young player and Peterson is near the end of his career. Peterson is in his 13th year and has amassed 13,625 yards.
Cook is young and has not yet proven he can stay healthy for an entire year. But if he can maintain his health throughout his entire career, I’m confident we’ll be able to make an apples to apples comparison and Cook will come out on top.
Vikings Twitter Goes Nuts Over Peterson Criticism
Former Vikings lineman Alex Boone is a recurring guest on Skor North’s Purple Daily show and he cleverly saved his Adrian Peterson story for this week, saying “Adrian Peterson to me was the definition of why you shouldn’t meet your heros. Ever.”
Here’s his explanation.
Vikings Twitter went crazy and tore into Boone for the criticism. Most Twitter critics dismissed Boone because he was with the Vikings for only a year and he wasn’t very effective when he was.
Which, of course, doesn’t diminish the validity of Boone’s comments; it’s just attacking the messenger.
For me, I find Boone’s criticisms easy to believe.
Adrian Peterson’s behavior is why I stopped blogging about the Vikings until this year.
My last post before resuming this year was titled Vikings Should Release Adrian Peterson. I felt that way because because of how he treated his son.
No one would’ve blamed the Vikings for releasing Peterson. But you’ll recall that after the team endured legitimate public criticism by standing by him and bent over backward to make him happy to return, he complained about how he’d been treated.
That is the attitude of a self-centered person. Which is exactly what Boone was talking about, albiet in a different context.
You mean to tell me we went the entire 2017 season pronouncing our quarterback’s name incorrectly? Apparently, Case Keenum‘s first name ends in an invisible Y.
Skor North’s Matthew Coller pointed out the actual pronounciation of Keenum’s first name on his Purple Daily show:
How is it this is the first time we’re hearing about this? Keenum may have been channeling his inner Minnesota Nice by not bringing it up during his time here. But he could’ve had the common decency to add a visible Y to his name.