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Purple People Readers

IF I WERE TO WRITE ADRIAN PETERSON’S PRESS RELEASE STATEMENT AFTER HIS INDICTMENT
To the Vikings organization, my Vikings teammates, the NFL, and all my fans, but most importantly, to the young kids who looked up to me:
I stand before you as a humbled man of God.
I’m in full cooperation with the Montgomery County Sheriffs Department and have admitted that I used a switch on my son to discipline him. I’m here to tell you that in hindsight I did go too far in causing those injuries to my son, who I dearly love.
I disciplined my child like my parents disciplined me. But that’s no excuse for my behavior.
I’m ashamed for doing what I did to my son. I’m ashamed for the undue attention and embarrassment I’ve caused the Vikings and the NFL. I’ve always strived to be the best player on the field, but now I want to be the best father and human being off the field.
I know there’s a lot I need to do better as a parent. I’ve been in counseling with parenting and childcare experts about my behavior. I’m learning a lot about children and the dynamics of their relationships with parents. I see now how I could have better handled the situation with my son and our relationship overall. My counselors have given me new parenting strategies and I will be using them going forward.
Please pray for my son and for me. It is a difficult time for my family as we go through the legal proceedings. Please respect our privacy.
Whether I play football, the game I love, ever again is irrelevant. I will accept any and all punishment from the legal system, the Vikings and the NFL. My focus now is on my son and my family.
I truly regret my actions. I ask for my son’s forgiveness as well as my family and friends forgiveness. But most importantly, I ask for God’s forgiveness.
Thank you and God bless you.

IF I WERE TO WRITE ADRIAN PETERSON’S PRESS RELEASE STATEMENT AFTER HIS INDICTMENT

To the Vikings organization, my Vikings teammates, the NFL, and all my fans, but most importantly, to the young kids who looked up to me:

I stand before you as a humbled man of God.

I’m in full cooperation with the Montgomery County Sheriffs Department and have admitted that I used a switch on my son to discipline him. I’m here to tell you that in hindsight I did go too far in causing those injuries to my son, who I dearly love.

I disciplined my child like my parents disciplined me. But that’s no excuse for my behavior.

I’m ashamed for doing what I did to my son. I’m ashamed for the undue attention and embarrassment I’ve caused the Vikings and the NFL. I’ve always strived to be the best player on the field, but now I want to be the best father and human being off the field.

I know there’s a lot I need to do better as a parent. I’ve been in counseling with parenting and childcare experts about my behavior. I’m learning a lot about children and the dynamics of their relationships with parents. I see now how I could have better handled the situation with my son and our relationship overall. My counselors have given me new parenting strategies and I will be using them going forward.

Please pray for my son and for me. It is a difficult time for my family as we go through the legal proceedings. Please respect our privacy.

Whether I play football, the game I love, ever again is irrelevant. I will accept any and all punishment from the legal system, the Vikings and the NFL. My focus now is on my son and my family.

I truly regret my actions. I ask for my son’s forgiveness as well as my family and friends forgiveness. But most importantly, I ask for God’s forgiveness.

Thank you and God bless you.



ADRIAN PETERSON INDICTED: WHERE ARE THE HEROES NOW?
Well, this sucks.
When news broke that Adrian Peterson was indicted for child abuse, I didn’t want to believe it. Not our Adrian. Not the face of the Vikings. Not the good-guy that all of us Vikings diehards have come to love.
Adrian admitted he took a switch to his son. According to reporter Nick Wright, who broke the story, Adrian loves his son, but truly believes he did nothing wrong. Adrian told the police about how “whippings were a part of his upbringing”. How he believes “they’re important to learning and becoming a man”.
I’m not going to debate the validity of Adrian’s beliefs or debate the effectiveness of Corporal punishment. I’m a father and I have a 13 year-old daughter. I don’t believe in laying your hand on a child. Not for any reason. Don’t see a need for it.
I don’t know the life that Adrian grew up in or the life he currently lives, so I can’t judge him. I also don’t know the complete facts about his indictment and we won’t know until Adrian has had his day in court.
What I do know is that there are people who are raised by the switch and people will continue to be raised by the switch. Adrian’s indictment won’t change that. In Texas and the South, taking a switch, belt or paddle to a child is considered part of parenting. Right or wrong, we could argue endlessly and still not come to an agreement on the proper way to raise a child.
It’s an understatement to say how you were raised plays a huge role in your adult life. The complexities of the issue is mindboggling when you consider Adrian believes he was doing right by disciplining his son with the switch, while he also believes he would never strike a child with an extension cord that was used on him as a kid.
I wish Adrian had incorporated the best methods from his upbringing and dismissed the worst lessons like the extension cord from his own parenting. I do believe we can rise above our environment and choose the life we want to live. You can do better for yourself despite your parents or your environment. Adrian has proven that in his professional career by working his ass off to become one of the best athletes in the world.
In Adrian’s world and for the many athletes who grew up the way he grew up, corporal punishment appears to be quite common – something that happens and is accepted. Many sports stars like Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Darnell Dockett tweeted, “I got a ass whippn at 5 with a switch that’s lasted about 40mins and couldn’t sit for 2days. It’s was all love though. Times have changed!”
I’m sure many child abuse cases go unreported to authorities especially in areas like Texas where “ass whippings” are more commonplace. Which has me wondering if Adrian was indicted because he is who he is? Did this incident blow up nationally because he’s an NFL superstar?
 I also wonder if geography played a role. It was a Minnesota doctor who reported the injuries. Would a Southern doctor call the authorities? I’m not saying the Minnesota doctor shouldn’t have reported Adrian based on his examination of the son – he’s legally obligated to do so. I just wonder if Adrian’s fame and Northern culture contributed to his indictment.
Regardless, here we are and the news from yesterday afternoon isn’t just a bad dream. The reality is for Adrian and all Vikings as well as NFL fans, it’s not about football anymore.
I feel for Adrian. But I also feel for his 4 year-old. I don’t know all the legal ramifications of the indictment, but whether Adrian plays again this season or ever in the NFL, I could care less.
I hope justice will be served. I hope Adrian grows from this regardless of the legal outcome. I hope Adrian’s son won’t be permanently damaged emotionally or psychologically. Most importantly, I hope both Adrian and his son go on to strengthen and deepen their relationship.
Adrian’s son needs his father. That little boy needs a hero he can look up to and there’s no better hero than your own dad. We as sports fans and citizens of the world also need heroes. We’ve seen too many of our sports role models fall from grace lately. Tiger Woods. Lance Armstrong. And now Adrian Peterson.
I can only imagine what the young boys and girls are thinking these days when it comes to their sports idols. When is their athletic hero going to do something that gets himself humiliated, banned or convicted? Lately, it’s felt like only a matter of when, not if.
Unfortunately, based on what we’ve seen so far, Adrian is a fallen hero. The pictures of the injuries to his son attest to that. No longer will I see Adrian in the same light again. That’s not to say I condemn him. I’m still going to root for him – not as an athlete but as a human being trying to find his way through life and do his best.
I hope Adrian’s fall from grace won’t be too steep and that he can come back to become not necessarily a hero but at the very least, a better man.

ADRIAN PETERSON INDICTED: WHERE ARE THE HEROES NOW?

Well, this sucks.

When news broke that Adrian Peterson was indicted for child abuse, I didn’t want to believe it. Not our Adrian. Not the face of the Vikings. Not the good-guy that all of us Vikings diehards have come to love.

Adrian admitted he took a switch to his son. According to reporter Nick Wright, who broke the story, Adrian loves his son, but truly believes he did nothing wrong. Adrian told the police about how “whippings were a part of his upbringing”. How he believes “they’re important to learning and becoming a man”.

I’m not going to debate the validity of Adrian’s beliefs or debate the effectiveness of Corporal punishment. I’m a father and I have a 13 year-old daughter. I don’t believe in laying your hand on a child. Not for any reason. Don’t see a need for it.

I don’t know the life that Adrian grew up in or the life he currently lives, so I can’t judge him. I also don’t know the complete facts about his indictment and we won’t know until Adrian has had his day in court.

What I do know is that there are people who are raised by the switch and people will continue to be raised by the switch. Adrian’s indictment won’t change that. In Texas and the South, taking a switch, belt or paddle to a child is considered part of parenting. Right or wrong, we could argue endlessly and still not come to an agreement on the proper way to raise a child.

It’s an understatement to say how you were raised plays a huge role in your adult life. The complexities of the issue is mindboggling when you consider Adrian believes he was doing right by disciplining his son with the switch, while he also believes he would never strike a child with an extension cord that was used on him as a kid.

I wish Adrian had incorporated the best methods from his upbringing and dismissed the worst lessons like the extension cord from his own parenting. I do believe we can rise above our environment and choose the life we want to live. You can do better for yourself despite your parents or your environment. Adrian has proven that in his professional career by working his ass off to become one of the best athletes in the world.

In Adrian’s world and for the many athletes who grew up the way he grew up, corporal punishment appears to be quite common – something that happens and is accepted. Many sports stars like Arizona Cardinals defensive tackle Darnell Dockett tweeted, “I got a ass whippn at 5 with a switch that’s lasted about 40mins and couldn’t sit for 2days. It’s was all love though. Times have changed!”

I’m sure many child abuse cases go unreported to authorities especially in areas like Texas where “ass whippings” are more commonplace. Which has me wondering if Adrian was indicted because he is who he is? Did this incident blow up nationally because he’s an NFL superstar?

 I also wonder if geography played a role. It was a Minnesota doctor who reported the injuries. Would a Southern doctor call the authorities? I’m not saying the Minnesota doctor shouldn’t have reported Adrian based on his examination of the son – he’s legally obligated to do so. I just wonder if Adrian’s fame and Northern culture contributed to his indictment.

Regardless, here we are and the news from yesterday afternoon isn’t just a bad dream. The reality is for Adrian and all Vikings as well as NFL fans, it’s not about football anymore.

I feel for Adrian. But I also feel for his 4 year-old. I don’t know all the legal ramifications of the indictment, but whether Adrian plays again this season or ever in the NFL, I could care less.

I hope justice will be served. I hope Adrian grows from this regardless of the legal outcome. I hope Adrian’s son won’t be permanently damaged emotionally or psychologically. Most importantly, I hope both Adrian and his son go on to strengthen and deepen their relationship.

Adrian’s son needs his father. That little boy needs a hero he can look up to and there’s no better hero than your own dad. We as sports fans and citizens of the world also need heroes. We’ve seen too many of our sports role models fall from grace lately. Tiger Woods. Lance Armstrong. And now Adrian Peterson.

I can only imagine what the young boys and girls are thinking these days when it comes to their sports idols. When is their athletic hero going to do something that gets himself humiliated, banned or convicted? Lately, it’s felt like only a matter of when, not if.

Unfortunately, based on what we’ve seen so far, Adrian is a fallen hero. The pictures of the injuries to his son attest to that. No longer will I see Adrian in the same light again. That’s not to say I condemn him. I’m still going to root for him – not as an athlete but as a human being trying to find his way through life and do his best.

I hope Adrian’s fall from grace won’t be too steep and that he can come back to become not necessarily a hero but at the very least, a better man.

PACKER BACKERS: GREEN BAY IS GREAT AND DON’T YOU FORGET ABOUT IT
I guess my Green Bay Packers-loving friends are really hurting from the Packers destruction and the Vikings dominant performance the first week of this NFL season. Hey, we just dominated the upstart Rams. No big deal. And you cheeseheads just got exposed by the excellent Seahawks. No big deal.
But I’ve been getting texts, emails and social media reminders about the superiority of their beloved can’t-do-no-wrong Packers.
One Packer backer even sent me this article about “Five Things Packers Fans Always Bring Up”. 
Here is my response to those 5 things:
1) Super Bowls: True, Packers have won more rings than the Vikings. No argument there. But the Steelers, Cowboys and 49ers have more rings. I bet that bothers the hell out of cheeseheads. I know they think they are the greatest sports team in the world so they deserve to win the most. But rings are harder to come by in this era. There won’t be another dynasty for the Packers or any other NFL team like it was in the 60’s. I’m actually scared for Packer fans if the Vikings ever win a Super Bowl. Green Bay and the state of Wisconsin might implode. I’m good with that.
2) Fair Weather Fans: The Vikings are still the number 1 sport in Minnesota. By far. Tons of rabid and loyal fans. We may have more fair weather fans here but that’s because we don’t live in Green Bay or Wisconsin, where the Packers are the only thing you got going. Plus I find it humorous a ton of Packer fans live in Minnesota. I don’t know any Vikings fans that live in Wisconsin. It’s probably because after Sundays, the Packers just don’t pay your bills. Even if you are an “owner”.
(Interestingly, the article I’m responding to is from the CBSMinnesota website but the author is not listed.  I’m sure the writer is a probably Packer fan gainfully employed here in Minnesota.)
3) Lambeau: Stadiums are great. Lambeau is up there with the likes of Wrigley Field in the pantheon of sports. But in order to witness the glory of all that is Lambeau, you’ve got to go to Green Bay. No thanks. 
4) Favre: Yes, Brett is one of the greatest players ever. No doubt. Hated him as a Packer. Love him as a true NFL immortal. But last I heard, he wasn’t “forgiven” by everyone for playing with the Vikings as the writer claims. There are still a lot of Packer backers that are pissed. You call us “fair weather fans” and you’re still ticked about Favre after all he’s done for you? What a bunch of ingrates.
5) Your Former Players: Sure, Vikings have signed ex-Packers. But this is just in recent history. Before the Favre era, Packers were pretty bad for about 20 years and you couldn’t give away a Packers player. So no shame in signing one of your players if he can still play. Greg Jennings is one of my favorite players. Class act. And he can still play. We’ve got a QB now who can actually throw. I’ll be loving the fact that with every TD Jennings scores, your green and gold undies will be all that much more in a bunch.
Sure, Packers can bask in the light of their history. But I think the tide is turning and we’re going to see a shift in power soon – maybe not this year – but I like this Vikings team led by Head Coach Mike Zimmer more than I’ve liked any other purple and gold team ever.
And perhaps, Packer backers sense this shift too. Which would explain why I’m getting more than the usual reminders of the greatness of their franchise. I can’t tell you how much I’m actually loving it.
Skol, yo!

PACKER BACKERS: GREEN BAY IS GREAT AND DON’T YOU FORGET ABOUT IT

I guess my Green Bay Packers-loving friends are really hurting from the Packers destruction and the Vikings dominant performance the first week of this NFL season. Hey, we just dominated the upstart Rams. No big deal. And you cheeseheads just got exposed by the excellent Seahawks. No big deal.

But I’ve been getting texts, emails and social media reminders about the superiority of their beloved can’t-do-no-wrong Packers.

One Packer backer even sent me this article about “Five Things Packers Fans Always Bring Up”

Here is my response to those 5 things:

1) Super Bowls: True, Packers have won more rings than the Vikings. No argument there. But the Steelers, Cowboys and 49ers have more rings. I bet that bothers the hell out of cheeseheads. I know they think they are the greatest sports team in the world so they deserve to win the most. But rings are harder to come by in this era. There won’t be another dynasty for the Packers or any other NFL team like it was in the 60’s. I’m actually scared for Packer fans if the Vikings ever win a Super Bowl. Green Bay and the state of Wisconsin might implode. I’m good with that.

2) Fair Weather Fans: The Vikings are still the number 1 sport in Minnesota. By far. Tons of rabid and loyal fans. We may have more fair weather fans here but that’s because we don’t live in Green Bay or Wisconsin, where the Packers are the only thing you got going. Plus I find it humorous a ton of Packer fans live in Minnesota. I don’t know any Vikings fans that live in Wisconsin. It’s probably because after Sundays, the Packers just don’t pay your bills. Even if you are an “owner”.

(Interestingly, the article I’m responding to is from the CBSMinnesota website but the author is not listed.  I’m sure the writer is a probably Packer fan gainfully employed here in Minnesota.)

3) Lambeau: Stadiums are great. Lambeau is up there with the likes of Wrigley Field in the pantheon of sports. But in order to witness the glory of all that is Lambeau, you’ve got to go to Green Bay. No thanks. 

4) Favre: Yes, Brett is one of the greatest players ever. No doubt. Hated him as a Packer. Love him as a true NFL immortal. But last I heard, he wasn’t “forgiven” by everyone for playing with the Vikings as the writer claims. There are still a lot of Packer backers that are pissed. You call us “fair weather fans” and you’re still ticked about Favre after all he’s done for you? What a bunch of ingrates.

5) Your Former Players: Sure, Vikings have signed ex-Packers. But this is just in recent history. Before the Favre era, Packers were pretty bad for about 20 years and you couldn’t give away a Packers player. So no shame in signing one of your players if he can still play. Greg Jennings is one of my favorite players. Class act. And he can still play. We’ve got a QB now who can actually throw. I’ll be loving the fact that with every TD Jennings scores, your green and gold undies will be all that much more in a bunch.

Sure, Packers can bask in the light of their history. But I think the tide is turning and we’re going to see a shift in power soon – maybe not this year – but I like this Vikings team led by Head Coach Mike Zimmer more than I’ve liked any other purple and gold team ever.

And perhaps, Packer backers sense this shift too. Which would explain why I’m getting more than the usual reminders of the greatness of their franchise. I can’t tell you how much I’m actually loving it.

Skol, yo!

POSTGAME WEEK 1: VIKINGS VS RAMS
Wow. That felt freakin’ awesome.
To say our Vikings came to play today is an understatement. The result was a lopsided victory of 34-6 over the St. Louis Rams.
The Ram’s defense was supposed to dominate our offense. Didn’t happen.
 Adrian Peterson doesn’t need the preseason and was ready to go giving the Ram’s defense a heavy dose of AllDay, which opened up our offense for TDs by Greg Jennings, Kyle Rudolph, and that amazing 67 yard pitch and run by Cordarrelle Patterson, who already is living up to his billing as one of the breakout stars this year.
Instead, it was our D that dominated the Rams offense. As I said in my pregame post, our D line is improved and will make a huge difference for us this year. 
The Vikings defense had 5 sacks and 2 interceptions. Linval Joseph, Everson Griffen and Sharrif Floyd had outstanding games in the trenches. Their play up front takes the pressure off our linebackers and defensive backs, which allows plays to be made behind them. LB Anthony Barr put a tremendous hit on a blitz that resulted in a Harrison Smith pick 6. Even Josh Robinson (yes, that Josh Robinson) got a pick.
What was most amazing about this game was we won on the road. We didn’t win on the road at all last year. I believe this is an indication of how hardnosed and mentally tough the Vikings team will be this year. Under Head Coach Mike Zimmer we won’t back down. This is good because our next 5 games is going to test the Vikings faithful. We’ll see how we fare and who remains on the Vikings bandwagon after we face Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford. Yikes!
Those five games will determine our destiny this year. Will we be contenders or pretenders? You know me. I’m always going to bet on purple.
Skol, yo!

POSTGAME WEEK 1: VIKINGS VS RAMS

Wow. That felt freakin’ awesome.

To say our Vikings came to play today is an understatement. The result was a lopsided victory of 34-6 over the St. Louis Rams.

The Ram’s defense was supposed to dominate our offense. Didn’t happen.

Adrian Peterson doesn’t need the preseason and was ready to go giving the Ram’s defense a heavy dose of AllDay, which opened up our offense for TDs by Greg Jennings, Kyle Rudolph, and that amazing 67 yard pitch and run by Cordarrelle Patterson, who already is living up to his billing as one of the breakout stars this year.

Instead, it was our D that dominated the Rams offense. As I said in my pregame post, our D line is improved and will make a huge difference for us this year.

The Vikings defense had 5 sacks and 2 interceptions. Linval Joseph, Everson Griffen and Sharrif Floyd had outstanding games in the trenches. Their play up front takes the pressure off our linebackers and defensive backs, which allows plays to be made behind them. LB Anthony Barr put a tremendous hit on a blitz that resulted in a Harrison Smith pick 6. Even Josh Robinson (yes, that Josh Robinson) got a pick.

What was most amazing about this game was we won on the road. We didn’t win on the road at all last year. I believe this is an indication of how hardnosed and mentally tough the Vikings team will be this year. Under Head Coach Mike Zimmer we won’t back down. This is good because our next 5 games is going to test the Vikings faithful. We’ll see how we fare and who remains on the Vikings bandwagon after we face Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford. Yikes!

Those five games will determine our destiny this year. Will we be contenders or pretenders? You know me. I’m always going to bet on purple.

Skol, yo!

PREGAME WEEK 1: VIKINGS VS RAMS
“Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.” – Mike Tyson
The Vikings play football for real today. YES! I’m about as excited as anyone. I love the optimism that our fans have for this year’s team.
I believe in Mike Zimmer. I believe in Norv Turner. I believe this Vikings team will surprise a lot of people. I don’t see the Vikings as an “easy out” this year.
But with all the positivity of the OTAs, training camp and the preseason performance, it doesn’t mean anything. It’s the regular season now and NFL players will tell you that the intensity ramps up immensely. Just ask the team many NFL experts picked as the preseason Super Bowl favorite, the Green Bay Packers, how things are going after they got exposed by the Seattle Seahawks in the season opener.
I started with Mike Tyson’s famous quote because we’re going to see at kickoff today what we’ve got in this young Vikings team. My hunch is there will be a lot of ups and downs throughout the season but with Zimmer at the helm, I believe this team will be hardnosed and won’t go down without a fight.
Prediction for Season
I believe the Vikings will go 9-7.
The biggest reason? The D will be much improved.
Last year’s defense was horrible but this year’s version will attack more and not sit back to get shredded by the likes of Aaron Rodgers. I love this mentality. We need to keep the elite passers guessing in this league. Come with unpredictable blitzes and schemes. Sure, we’ll get burned on some plays but why not risk it when sitting back will almost guarantee we’ll get burned on every play.
I think the biggest difference we’ll see on D will be the play of our defensive linemen. Last year’s defensive line provided little to no pressure. I think this year’s D line may be one our strengths with a good mix of veterans and rookies. The addition of Linval Joseph and hopefully a breakout year for Sharrif Floyd will force opposing QBs to make quick decisions or at the very least, give QBs happy feet back in the pocket.
Prediction for Rams Game
Vikings Win 24-17
Vikings aren’t supposed to win this game. We aren’t getting any love from the national media. That’s OK because most of what I read from the national media concerning the Vikings proves that they know very little about the Vikings. If you’re not part of the local media or blogger network who provides great coverage of this team every day, then you can’t truly know how this team has improved. Plus, I love that the Vikings are underdogs. It’ll make the pain of losing to the purple and gold hurt that much more. Particularly to our foes in the NFC North.
The game versus the Rams will be a tight battle even with Ram’s QB Sam Bradford out for the season. It’s not their offense I’m worried about. It’s the Ram’s defense that has me concerned.
The Ram’s may have one of the best defensive lines in the NFL. Rookie DT Aaron Donald is a stud and has even exceeded expectations so far, and along with Michael Brockers, Robert Quinn and Chris Long, will give the Vikings a stiff challenge in stopping them. I believe the key to this game is if our offensive lineman can limit the damage of the Ram’s D-line. If we win the battle in the trenches, Vikings will win the game.
Skol, yo!

PREGAME WEEK 1: VIKINGS VS RAMS

“Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.”  Mike Tyson

The Vikings play football for real today. YES! I’m about as excited as anyone. I love the optimism that our fans have for this year’s team.

I believe in Mike Zimmer. I believe in Norv Turner. I believe this Vikings team will surprise a lot of people. I don’t see the Vikings as an “easy out” this year.

But with all the positivity of the OTAs, training camp and the preseason performance, it doesn’t mean anything. It’s the regular season now and NFL players will tell you that the intensity ramps up immensely. Just ask the team many NFL experts picked as the preseason Super Bowl favorite, the Green Bay Packers, how things are going after they got exposed by the Seattle Seahawks in the season opener.

I started with Mike Tyson’s famous quote because we’re going to see at kickoff today what we’ve got in this young Vikings team. My hunch is there will be a lot of ups and downs throughout the season but with Zimmer at the helm, I believe this team will be hardnosed and won’t go down without a fight.

Prediction for Season

I believe the Vikings will go 9-7.

The biggest reason? The D will be much improved.

Last year’s defense was horrible but this year’s version will attack more and not sit back to get shredded by the likes of Aaron Rodgers. I love this mentality. We need to keep the elite passers guessing in this league. Come with unpredictable blitzes and schemes. Sure, we’ll get burned on some plays but why not risk it when sitting back will almost guarantee we’ll get burned on every play.

I think the biggest difference we’ll see on D will be the play of our defensive linemen. Last year’s defensive line provided little to no pressure. I think this year’s D line may be one our strengths with a good mix of veterans and rookies. The addition of Linval Joseph and hopefully a breakout year for Sharrif Floyd will force opposing QBs to make quick decisions or at the very least, give QBs happy feet back in the pocket.

Prediction for Rams Game

Vikings Win 24-17

Vikings aren’t supposed to win this game. We aren’t getting any love from the national media. That’s OK because most of what I read from the national media concerning the Vikings proves that they know very little about the Vikings. If you’re not part of the local media or blogger network who provides great coverage of this team every day, then you can’t truly know how this team has improved. Plus, I love that the Vikings are underdogs. It’ll make the pain of losing to the purple and gold hurt that much more. Particularly to our foes in the NFC North.

The game versus the Rams will be a tight battle even with Ram’s QB Sam Bradford out for the season. It’s not their offense I’m worried about. It’s the Ram’s defense that has me concerned.

The Ram’s may have one of the best defensive lines in the NFL. Rookie DT Aaron Donald is a stud and has even exceeded expectations so far, and along with Michael Brockers, Robert Quinn and Chris Long, will give the Vikings a stiff challenge in stopping them. I believe the key to this game is if our offensive lineman can limit the damage of the Ram’s D-line. If we win the battle in the trenches, Vikings will win the game.

Skol, yo!

WHY IT’S NOT RIDICULOUS TO THINK TEDDY BRIDGEWATER SHOULD START
There’s been a lot of talk about how it’s best to let Teddy Bridgewater sit and learn this year.
This “analysis” or “opinion” drives me crazy.
I don’t have inside intel like our local sports reporters, bloggers and talk radio hosts. They may have the inside scoop and if so, I’d like them to detail why they think Cassel has performed so well that it’s ridiculous for fans like myself to think Bridgewater should start.
I’ll address three arguments that are commonly used as reasons to not start Teddy.
1) Matt Cassel Clearly Won QB Competition
He did? Cassel went into training camp as the starter and has played well to keep his job. No denying that. But in 3 preseason games, Cassel and Bridgewater have almost identical stats:
Cassel: 26 of 39 for 367 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INTs.
Bridgewater: 26 of 40 for 266 yards, 4TDs, 0 INTs
Sure, the naysayers will claim most of Bridgewater’s numbers are the result of playing versus the other team’s scrubs. True. But if Bridgewater is any good, he should shine against lesser competition, right? Also remember that Teddy is playing with our reserves, so it’s a level playing field. It’s not like Bridgewater is running with our first-team against our opponent’s second- and third teams.
You have to give Bridgewater credit for making the most of his moments to shine. He lead the team to a last-minute victory while facing blitzes nearly every play on the winning drive against the Arizona Cardinals. Then versus the Kansas City Chiefs, he was efficient in the red zone throwing 2 touchdowns to TE Allen Reisner. Bridgewater sidestepped the rush on one TD toss and froze the defense with a look-off before throwing the second TD.
Whoa, hold on, what about the Oakland Raider game when Teddy looked so-so? I would argue that if Bridgewater’s roll-out completion to WR Greg Jennings hadn’t been called back for a penalty and the first-team offense didn’t sputter due to subsequent penalties, Teddy might have had a different night. Sure, I’m speculating, but it’s not like our first-team helped Bridgewater that night.
2) Sitting Worked For Aaron Rodgers
The people pushing for Teddy to sit his rookie year often use Aaron Rodgers in their argument. Rodgers sat on the sidelines for 3 years waiting for Brett Favre to decide to retire. It worked with Rodgers so why shouldn’t it work for Bridgewater?
My hunch is that Rodgers always had the talent and intestinal fortitude to be a starter in his rookie season. He didn’t need “marinating”. And either does Bridgewater.
Unfortunately, Rodgers had to sit because he couldn’t “beat out” Favre, who by then, had already become a living legend in the NFL. Rodgers had to sit because of “office politics”. You can’t be “the man” until “the man” leaves.
Matt Cassel is not Brett Favre. Cassel is an adequate NFL starter. Favre is a future first-ballot Hall of Famer. With the Vikings situation, if the QB competition is close and Cassel is not Brett Favre, then let Teddy start.
The Vikings and their fans don’t “owe” Cassel anything. Yes, Cassel was treated badly by the Vikings and should have been allowed to start last year rather than endure the Christian Ponder experiment. But that was then, this is now. I’m not looking to make up for Cassel’s mistreatment.
3) A Rookie QB Will Hurt The Vikings Chances
Hurt our chances for what? This is a rebuilding year for the Vikings. New coaching staff. One of the youngest teams. Playing in a tough division. Yes, we are improved and will be better than expected. But we’re predicted to be only slightly better than last year’s awful 5-10-1 team – with little chance to compete for the NFC North title or make the playoffs. 
If Bridgewater starts, do you think the Vikings are going to be so much worse? Do you think the difference between Cassel and Bridgewater is the difference between a winning or a losing record? I don’t think so. This isn’t Cassel versus Ponder. If Cassel had started last year, I believe the Vikings would have had a winning season.
I have nothing against Matt Cassel. I like Cassel and believe he can lead the Vikings offense. But I’m about the future. Teddy Bridgewater is the future for the Vikings. Cassel has had his chances in the NFL. Now it’s Teddy’s turn. 
I’m a big believer in learning by doing. It’s easier to learn how to do something from actually being forced to do it, rather than watching someone else do it. Sure, you’ll make mistakes, but if you’re smart and capable, you’ll pick things up fast and bounce right back. 
The sooner Bridgewater goes through the ups and downs of his rookie season, the sooner the Vikings can become a legitimate contender year after year. The only thing ridiculous is to say that it’s ridiculous to believe that Bridgewater should start.
From what I’ve seen and read, Bridgewater has not disappointed the coaching staff. Both Head Coach Mike Zimmer and Offensive Coordinator Norv Turner have praised Bridgewater’s talent, work ethic and mental makeup. Bridgewater’s nickname is GUMP (Great Under Major Pressure). He doesn’t seem like the type of player that wilts in the spotlight or fears mistakes.  
With all things close going against Cassel and opposing defenses, Two-Minute Teddy time is now.
Skol, yo!

WHY IT’S NOT RIDICULOUS TO THINK TEDDY BRIDGEWATER SHOULD START

There’s been a lot of talk about how it’s best to let Teddy Bridgewater sit and learn this year.

This “analysis” or “opinion” drives me crazy.

I don’t have inside intel like our local sports reporters, bloggers and talk radio hosts. They may have the inside scoop and if so, I’d like them to detail why they think Cassel has performed so well that it’s ridiculous for fans like myself to think Bridgewater should start.

I’ll address three arguments that are commonly used as reasons to not start Teddy.

1) Matt Cassel Clearly Won QB Competition

He did? Cassel went into training camp as the starter and has played well to keep his job. No denying that. But in 3 preseason games, Cassel and Bridgewater have almost identical stats:

Cassel: 26 of 39 for 367 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INTs.

Bridgewater: 26 of 40 for 266 yards, 4TDs, 0 INTs

Sure, the naysayers will claim most of Bridgewater’s numbers are the result of playing versus the other team’s scrubs. True. But if Bridgewater is any good, he should shine against lesser competition, right? Also remember that Teddy is playing with our reserves, so it’s a level playing field. It’s not like Bridgewater is running with our first-team against our opponent’s second- and third teams.

You have to give Bridgewater credit for making the most of his moments to shine. He lead the team to a last-minute victory while facing blitzes nearly every play on the winning drive against the Arizona Cardinals. Then versus the Kansas City Chiefs, he was efficient in the red zone throwing 2 touchdowns to TE Allen Reisner. Bridgewater sidestepped the rush on one TD toss and froze the defense with a look-off before throwing the second TD.

Whoa, hold on, what about the Oakland Raider game when Teddy looked so-so? I would argue that if Bridgewater’s roll-out completion to WR Greg Jennings hadn’t been called back for a penalty and the first-team offense didn’t sputter due to subsequent penalties, Teddy might have had a different night. Sure, I’m speculating, but it’s not like our first-team helped Bridgewater that night.

2) Sitting Worked For Aaron Rodgers

The people pushing for Teddy to sit his rookie year often use Aaron Rodgers in their argument. Rodgers sat on the sidelines for 3 years waiting for Brett Favre to decide to retire. It worked with Rodgers so why shouldn’t it work for Bridgewater?

My hunch is that Rodgers always had the talent and intestinal fortitude to be a starter in his rookie season. He didn’t need “marinating”. And either does Bridgewater.

Unfortunately, Rodgers had to sit because he couldn’t “beat out” Favre, who by then, had already become a living legend in the NFL. Rodgers had to sit because of “office politics”. You can’t be “the man” until “the man” leaves.

Matt Cassel is not Brett Favre. Cassel is an adequate NFL starter. Favre is a future first-ballot Hall of Famer. With the Vikings situation, if the QB competition is close and Cassel is not Brett Favre, then let Teddy start.

The Vikings and their fans don’t “owe” Cassel anything. Yes, Cassel was treated badly by the Vikings and should have been allowed to start last year rather than endure the Christian Ponder experiment. But that was then, this is now. I’m not looking to make up for Cassel’s mistreatment.

3) A Rookie QB Will Hurt The Vikings Chances

Hurt our chances for what? This is a rebuilding year for the Vikings. New coaching staff. One of the youngest teams. Playing in a tough division. Yes, we are improved and will be better than expected. But we’re predicted to be only slightly better than last year’s awful 5-10-1 team – with little chance to compete for the NFC North title or make the playoffs.

If Bridgewater starts, do you think the Vikings are going to be so much worse? Do you think the difference between Cassel and Bridgewater is the difference between a winning or a losing record? I don’t think so. This isn’t Cassel versus Ponder. If Cassel had started last year, I believe the Vikings would have had a winning season.

I have nothing against Matt Cassel. I like Cassel and believe he can lead the Vikings offense. But I’m about the future. Teddy Bridgewater is the future for the Vikings. Cassel has had his chances in the NFL. Now it’s Teddy’s turn. 

I’m a big believer in learning by doing. It’s easier to learn how to do something from actually being forced to do it, rather than watching someone else do it. Sure, you’ll make mistakes, but if you’re smart and capable, you’ll pick things up fast and bounce right back.

The sooner Bridgewater goes through the ups and downs of his rookie season, the sooner the Vikings can become a legitimate contender year after year. The only thing ridiculous is to say that it’s ridiculous to believe that Bridgewater should start.

From what I’ve seen and read, Bridgewater has not disappointed the coaching staff. Both Head Coach Mike Zimmer and Offensive Coordinator Norv Turner have praised Bridgewater’s talent, work ethic and mental makeup. Bridgewater’s nickname is GUMP (Great Under Major Pressure). He doesn’t seem like the type of player that wilts in the spotlight or fears mistakes.  

With all things close going against Cassel and opposing defenses, Two-Minute Teddy time is now.

Skol, yo!

READ & REACT: PRESEASON GAME 2 VS CARDINALS
The second game of the preseason was a good test for the Vikings. I believe the Arizona Cardinals are a potential 10-win team and playoff contender.
I can’t remember a more memorable preseason game –  which isn’t saying a lot because, well, it’s the preseason – but this one will stick with me for many years.
Here’s 3 reasons why:
1. A Good Problem To Have
Teddy Bridgewater was all the talk after the game and for good reason. With 1:11 left, Teddy proved his namesake of “GUMP” (Great Under Major Pressure) by leading the team to a comeback win on a last second pass to WR Rodney Smith.
Sure, Teddy did it against the Cardinal’s second and third-team defenders but it’s not like they just gave the game to him. Most of the players on both sides are fighting for their livelihoods. 
Teddy made the right reads and got the ball where it needed to go with the Cardinals sending blitzes. Teddy never let anyone see him sweat. He looked sweat-free and cool on the sidelines after the winning drive. Ice, ice (in the vein) baby.
Is Matt Cassel still the starter? The football experts and writers say yes. Cassel played well and I wouldn’t be mad if he got the nod. I’m a big supporter of Cassel. He’s a true pro and a class act.
The undecided starting QB situation for once is a good problem to have for the Vikings. A hell of a lot better than having an undecided starting QB situation because we don’t have an NFL-caliber QB. Now we’ve got two QBs with the skills to start in the NFL and lead the Vikings. 
2. Kyle (And The High-Powered Offense?)
Kyle Rudolph gave us a glimpse of what we hope to see from him in the regular season. Sure, he dropped a TD pass from Cassel early, but finished strong with 4 catches for 89 yards including a 51-yard TD. He can block but has the playmaking abilities of a WR. Rudolph will be a tough matchup for opposing defenses.
In fact, I think the Vikings offense could be problematic for the teams we go up against. With Norv Turner’s offensive schemes and playcalling, the Vikings now have a legitimate offensive with explosive weapons in Kyle Rudolph, Cordarrelle Patterson, Greg Jennings and Adrian Peterson.
Having an offense that can score on long drives that eat up the clock and keep the likes of Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler and Matthew Stafford off the field can only help us be competitive. Our rivals can’t score if they don’t have the ball.
3. The Linval Joseph Effect?
Missed tackles and very few timely stops, resulted in a very average performance by our defense overall. I’m not overly concerned because I believe the personnel has improved and they’re still learning head coach Mike Zimmer’s scheme.
Despite Everson Griffen and Sharrif Floyd playing well, I think the Vikings missed Linval Joseph. The Cardinals ran against us effectively and the pressure on passing plays just didn’t seem quite as disruptive.
I’m sure Zimmer will be giving our defense an earful of F-bombs this week on what they need to correct. I have no doubt the D will be wrecking havoc versus the Chiefs next week.
Skol, yo!

READ & REACT: PRESEASON GAME 2 VS CARDINALS

The second game of the preseason was a good test for the Vikings. I believe the Arizona Cardinals are a potential 10-win team and playoff contender.

I can’t remember a more memorable preseason game   which isn’t saying a lot because, well, it’s the preseason  but this one will stick with me for many years.

Here’s 3 reasons why:

1. A Good Problem To Have

Teddy Bridgewater was all the talk after the game and for good reason. With 1:11 left, Teddy proved his namesake of “GUMP” (Great Under Major Pressure) by leading the team to a comeback win on a last second pass to WR Rodney Smith.

Sure, Teddy did it against the Cardinal’s second and third-team defenders but it’s not like they just gave the game to him. Most of the players on both sides are fighting for their livelihoods.

Teddy made the right reads and got the ball where it needed to go with the Cardinals sending blitzes. Teddy never let anyone see him sweat. He looked sweat-free and cool on the sidelines after the winning drive. Ice, ice (in the vein) baby.

Is Matt Cassel still the starter? The football experts and writers say yes. Cassel played well and I wouldn’t be mad if he got the nod. I’m a big supporter of Cassel. He’s a true pro and a class act.

The undecided starting QB situation for once is a good problem to have for the Vikings. A hell of a lot better than having an undecided starting QB situation because we don’t have an NFL-caliber QB. Now we’ve got two QBs with the skills to start in the NFL and lead the Vikings. 

2. Kyle (And The High-Powered Offense?)

Kyle Rudolph gave us a glimpse of what we hope to see from him in the regular season. Sure, he dropped a TD pass from Cassel early, but finished strong with 4 catches for 89 yards including a 51-yard TD. He can block but has the playmaking abilities of a WR. Rudolph will be a tough matchup for opposing defenses.

In fact, I think the Vikings offense could be problematic for the teams we go up against. With Norv Turner’s offensive schemes and playcalling, the Vikings now have a legitimate offensive with explosive weapons in Kyle Rudolph, Cordarrelle Patterson, Greg Jennings and Adrian Peterson.

Having an offense that can score on long drives that eat up the clock and keep the likes of Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler and Matthew Stafford off the field can only help us be competitive. Our rivals can’t score if they don’t have the ball.

3. The Linval Joseph Effect?

Missed tackles and very few timely stops, resulted in a very average performance by our defense overall. I’m not overly concerned because I believe the personnel has improved and they’re still learning head coach Mike Zimmer’s scheme.

Despite Everson Griffen and Sharrif Floyd playing well, I think the Vikings missed Linval Joseph. The Cardinals ran against us effectively and the pressure on passing plays just didn’t seem quite as disruptive.

I’m sure Zimmer will be giving our defense an earful of F-bombs this week on what they need to correct. I have no doubt the D will be wrecking havoc versus the Chiefs next week.

Skol, yo!

SYMPATHY FOR THE PONDER
Something bothered me about the Vikings first preseason game versus the Raiders. Work has been extremely busy so haven’t had a chance to write about it sooner. But even though it’s been almost a week, I still feel compelled to bring it up.
What bothered me was Christian Ponder. Nope, it wasn’t his play. Ponder played as he’s always played. Making the best of his limited QB abilities. He completed his usual number of rudimentary throws mixed with near pick 6’s. His third string offensive line didn’t do him any favors either. Ponder was under pressure most of the night.
Fans booed Ponder. And that’s what really bothered me. Sure fans paid money to attend the game and yes, they have every right to express their feelings about what they see on the field.
Considering Ponder’s current role on this Vikings team, I’m not sure what the point is in booing him. We know he’s not the man anymore. But more importantly, Ponder knows he’s not the man anymore.
Some fans have criticized his mopey body language and questioned his loyalty to the team. Ponder seems like a good guy. I’m sure he’s giving his best during his limited reps. I find it hard to imagine any athlete at any level wanting to suck.
I feel for Ponder. He was put in a bad situation he probably never asked for or even imagined in his wildest dreams. Rick Spielman selected Ponder 12th overall in the 2011 draft. I was shocked as anyone. I’m sure Ponder was just as shocked.
Spielman filled Ponder with hope that he could be a franchise QB. I was definitely rooting for Ponder. Why wouldn’t I? He wore the colors of my favorite team. I’m not an NFL GM or even close to a draft expert. I assumed Spielman saw something in Ponder.
Unfortunately, over three seasons and given every opportunity to be the man, Ponder made us see just how far away he was from being an NFL QB. Ponder was (and still is) a one-read-stare-down-his-WR-with-no-touch-and-prone-to-overthrows-and-underthrows kind of QB. His play was made even more depressing by the fact that the Packers have arguably the best QB in the league in Aaron Rodgers.
But like I said, I feel for Ponder. Just place yourself in Ponder’s cleats for a moment.
Think about a time where you had a dream opportunity and it slipped away despite your best efforts. That fumble you had against your crosstown rivals that cost your team the game. That big presentation for that big client that you froze at. That hot girl you finally got a date with but blew it because well, you were young, dumb and full of cum. (I’ve only heard about these things from a friend of a friend. Ahem. Cough. Cough.)
It sucks to suck. I wish Ponder all the best whether he’s on this team or not. Who knows, maybe Ponder gets a fresh start with another team and becomes a respectable QB in this league. It can happen. People mature. People can rise to the occasion to fulfill their potential.
At the very least, I hope Ponder can shut up all the boo birds by being terrific at whatever he goes on to do outside of football. Not everyone can make it in the NFL. It’s hard for us diehard Vikings fans to believe, but there is more to life than football.
Leave the man alone. Booing Ponder just takes away from the optimism we all have for this Vikings team and the upcoming season. There are so many things to be excited about. Teddy. Cordarrelle. Zimmer’s D.
Let Ponder drift away into the sunset of Vikings lore. Because this Vikings ship I wholeheartedly believe is headed in the right direction – towards the future shores of Purple Reign.
Skol, yo!

SYMPATHY FOR THE PONDER

Something bothered me about the Vikings first preseason game versus the Raiders. Work has been extremely busy so haven’t had a chance to write about it sooner. But even though it’s been almost a week, I still feel compelled to bring it up.

What bothered me was Christian Ponder. Nope, it wasn’t his play. Ponder played as he’s always played. Making the best of his limited QB abilities. He completed his usual number of rudimentary throws mixed with near pick 6’s. His third string offensive line didn’t do him any favors either. Ponder was under pressure most of the night.

Fans booed Ponder. And that’s what really bothered me. Sure fans paid money to attend the game and yes, they have every right to express their feelings about what they see on the field.

Considering Ponder’s current role on this Vikings team, I’m not sure what the point is in booing him. We know he’s not the man anymore. But more importantly, Ponder knows he’s not the man anymore.

Some fans have criticized his mopey body language and questioned his loyalty to the team. Ponder seems like a good guy. I’m sure he’s giving his best during his limited reps. I find it hard to imagine any athlete at any level wanting to suck.

I feel for Ponder. He was put in a bad situation he probably never asked for or even imagined in his wildest dreams. Rick Spielman selected Ponder 12th overall in the 2011 draft. I was shocked as anyone. I’m sure Ponder was just as shocked.

Spielman filled Ponder with hope that he could be a franchise QB. I was definitely rooting for Ponder. Why wouldn’t I? He wore the colors of my favorite team. I’m not an NFL GM or even close to a draft expert. I assumed Spielman saw something in Ponder.

Unfortunately, over three seasons and given every opportunity to be the man, Ponder made us see just how far away he was from being an NFL QB. Ponder was (and still is) a one-read-stare-down-his-WR-with-no-touch-and-prone-to-overthrows-and-underthrows kind of QB. His play was made even more depressing by the fact that the Packers have arguably the best QB in the league in Aaron Rodgers.

But like I said, I feel for Ponder. Just place yourself in Ponder’s cleats for a moment.

Think about a time where you had a dream opportunity and it slipped away despite your best efforts. That fumble you had against your crosstown rivals that cost your team the game. That big presentation for that big client that you froze at. That hot girl you finally got a date with but blew it because well, you were young, dumb and full of cum. (I’ve only heard about these things from a friend of a friend. Ahem. Cough. Cough.)

It sucks to suck. I wish Ponder all the best whether he’s on this team or not. Who knows, maybe Ponder gets a fresh start with another team and becomes a respectable QB in this league. It can happen. People mature. People can rise to the occasion to fulfill their potential.

At the very least, I hope Ponder can shut up all the boo birds by being terrific at whatever he goes on to do outside of football. Not everyone can make it in the NFL. It’s hard for us diehard Vikings fans to believe, but there is more to life than football.

Leave the man alone. Booing Ponder just takes away from the optimism we all have for this Vikings team and the upcoming season. There are so many things to be excited about. Teddy. Cordarrelle. Zimmer’s D.

Let Ponder drift away into the sunset of Vikings lore. Because this Vikings ship I wholeheartedly believe is headed in the right direction – towards the future shores of Purple Reign.

Skol, yo!

READ & REACT: PRESEASON GAME 1 VS RAIDERS
OK it’s just a preseason game. So it doesn’t mean a whole hell of a lot. Preseason records don’t determine how well a team is going to do in the regular season.
With that said, preseason games serve an important role in seeing how rookies look in live action or to see if players fighting for a roster spot will flash and separate from their teammates.
Here’s my 3 takeaways from the game last night:
1) Teddy Bridging The Gap
Many people are calling his performance of 6 for 13 for 49 yards, “so-so”. But stats often don’t tell the whole story. Bridgewater was Bridgewater in the way he went through his WR progressions and didn’t lock down on one receiver. He also had his typical pocket presence in the way he felt the rush and moved to give himself more time and/or space. He didn’t just duck and run like Christian Ponder. Sure he had a fumble when he held onto the ball too long but that’s a correctable mistake.
Despite tapering at the end of training camp, Bridgewater has received positive reviews for the most part. OC Norv Turner said Teddy is playing at an “awfully high level”. Head Coach Mike Zimmer, who doesn’t beat around the bush, said after the game that Bridgewater will be a great player. Former Vikings Rich Gannon and Mike Morris have raved about Teddy’s smarts, how tall he stands in the pocket and his surprisingly strong arm with a quick, smooth release.
Matt Cassel played well and deserves to be the starter right now. But it’s not a question of if but when Teddy will start. I’m sure there’s naysayers who argue Bridgewater can’t even beat out Cassel, but Cassel is a legitimate NFL QB who has led teams to 11 wins and the playoffs. I still believe that if Cassel had been the starter for the entire season last year, the Vikings would have had a winning record. Teddy is pushing Cassel and Cassel is not an easy out.
It’s good to remember that Bridgewater has never started right from the start even in high school or at Louisville. He got the starting nod after the fourth game of his Freshman season as a Cardinal and never gave it up. When will Bridgewater start? Your guess is as good as mine. But I truly believe once Teddy becomes the starter, he’ll excel.
2) Cordarrelle Patterson Is A Super Stud
Many football experts predict Cordarrelle Patterson will be a breakout star in his second season. These predictions come despite Patterson having to learn a new offense. He’s worked hard during the offseason and it showed in the game. Living up to his nickname, Cordarrelle did indeed “flash” on several plays including his one-handed catch to bail out a throw from Matt Cassel. Patterson will be a beast this season. A great guy and fan-favorite, he’ll be fun to watch.
3) Secondary Improved And Improving
Our defense – and secondary in particular – have been so bad in recent years that there’s no where to go but up. Thankfully, gone are the days of Asher Allen. Defensive backs are Mike Zimmer’s specialty and his coaching ability showed results versus the Raiders. I saw Vikings first-team DBs stick with WRs and be in the right position to make plays. The secondary is deeper with more talent and better coaching. Zimmer’s attacking/blitzing style of defense will also help our DBs in coverage because it won’t let the explosive offenses of Green Bay, Chicago or Detroit pick us apart when we previously sat back in Cover 2 with a weak rush.
All-in-all a good performance to build on for the Vikings. Although I wish we would have shut out the Raiders. But I’ll take the win even if it’s just the preseason.
Skol, yo!

READ & REACT: PRESEASON GAME 1 VS RAIDERS

OK it’s just a preseason game. So it doesn’t mean a whole hell of a lot. Preseason records don’t determine how well a team is going to do in the regular season.

With that said, preseason games serve an important role in seeing how rookies look in live action or to see if players fighting for a roster spot will flash and separate from their teammates.

Here’s my 3 takeaways from the game last night:

1) Teddy Bridging The Gap

Many people are calling his performance of 6 for 13 for 49 yards, “so-so”. But stats often don’t tell the whole story. Bridgewater was Bridgewater in the way he went through his WR progressions and didn’t lock down on one receiver. He also had his typical pocket presence in the way he felt the rush and moved to give himself more time and/or space. He didn’t just duck and run like Christian Ponder. Sure he had a fumble when he held onto the ball too long but that’s a correctable mistake.

Despite tapering at the end of training camp, Bridgewater has received positive reviews for the most part. OC Norv Turner said Teddy is playing at an “awfully high level”. Head Coach Mike Zimmer, who doesn’t beat around the bush, said after the game that Bridgewater will be a great player. Former Vikings Rich Gannon and Mike Morris have raved about Teddy’s smarts, how tall he stands in the pocket and his surprisingly strong arm with a quick, smooth release.

Matt Cassel played well and deserves to be the starter right now. But it’s not a question of if but when Teddy will start. I’m sure there’s naysayers who argue Bridgewater can’t even beat out Cassel, but Cassel is a legitimate NFL QB who has led teams to 11 wins and the playoffs. I still believe that if Cassel had been the starter for the entire season last year, the Vikings would have had a winning record. Teddy is pushing Cassel and Cassel is not an easy out.

It’s good to remember that Bridgewater has never started right from the start even in high school or at Louisville. He got the starting nod after the fourth game of his Freshman season as a Cardinal and never gave it up. When will Bridgewater start? Your guess is as good as mine. But I truly believe once Teddy becomes the starter, he’ll excel.

2) Cordarrelle Patterson Is A Super Stud

Many football experts predict Cordarrelle Patterson will be a breakout star in his second season. These predictions come despite Patterson having to learn a new offense. He’s worked hard during the offseason and it showed in the game. Living up to his nickname, Cordarrelle did indeed “flash” on several plays including his one-handed catch to bail out a throw from Matt Cassel. Patterson will be a beast this season. A great guy and fan-favorite, he’ll be fun to watch.

3) Secondary Improved And Improving

Our defense – and secondary in particular – have been so bad in recent years that there’s no where to go but up. Thankfully, gone are the days of Asher Allen. Defensive backs are Mike Zimmer’s specialty and his coaching ability showed results versus the Raiders. I saw Vikings first-team DBs stick with WRs and be in the right position to make plays. The secondary is deeper with more talent and better coaching. Zimmer’s attacking/blitzing style of defense will also help our DBs in coverage because it won’t let the explosive offenses of Green Bay, Chicago or Detroit pick us apart when we previously sat back in Cover 2 with a weak rush.

All-in-all a good performance to build on for the Vikings. Although I wish we would have shut out the Raiders. But I’ll take the win even if it’s just the preseason.

Skol, yo!

A LETTER FROM LOUISVILLE ABOUT TEDDY BRIDGEWATER
In case you missed it, read this well-written letter to us Vikings fans about what we’re getting in Teddy Bridgewater. I already felt great about landing Bridgewater but this letter really seals the deal.
Now, don’t think that I’ve got my purple-colored glasses on and am too blind to see that despite all the talk about Bridgewater’s work ethic and high character, the only thing that matters in the end is his on-field performance.
Christian Ponder is also a great young man, but he can’t play quarterback in the NFL. Being a good human being doesn’t trump your play. If Bridgewater turns out to be a franchise quarterback (which I believe he will be), then his good-guy reputation will further endear him to the fans. 
And that’s a great thing not only for the Vikings, but also the PED-filled and weed-riddled NFL.

A LETTER FROM LOUISVILLE ABOUT TEDDY BRIDGEWATER

In case you missed it, read this well-written letter to us Vikings fans about what we’re getting in Teddy Bridgewater. I already felt great about landing Bridgewater but this letter really seals the deal.

Now, don’t think that I’ve got my purple-colored glasses on and am too blind to see that despite all the talk about Bridgewater’s work ethic and high character, the only thing that matters in the end is his on-field performance.

Christian Ponder is also a great young man, but he can’t play quarterback in the NFL. Being a good human being doesn’t trump your play. If Bridgewater turns out to be a franchise quarterback (which I believe he will be), then his good-guy reputation will further endear him to the fans.

And that’s a great thing not only for the Vikings, but also the PED-filled and weed-riddled NFL.