Friday, October 06, 2006

Vikings v Lions Kool-Aided Preview

Week 5

Well, now we will find something out about this Vikings team. Chicago was a game we gave away, Buffalo was a game we didn't show up for and now we get a weak Lion's team at home. Are we going to execute and beat a team we should be at home? Or are we going to remain in this 1 week funk and give the Lions a chance to beat us for the first time in a long time. The Vikings have tames the Lions for the better part of the last decade. We are 14-2 in the last 8 years including winning the last 8 meetings. This is a game the Vikings not only have to win, but have to dominate if they want to be established as a playoff team in 2006.

The Trenches - The Lions are hit and miss along their offensive line. OG-Verba is injured and likely will not be playing but C-Raiola is decent and OG-Woody is pretty solid. But this is a matchup our D-line should win. I think Kevin Williams and Udeze have matchups they should win, while Pat Williams should win his battle on most snaps as well.

The strength of the Lions defense is their D-line. Rogers is one of the better DTs in the league and his matchup with Hicks is a big one. This could turn into a Johnson/Peppers situations if the Vikes don't help Hicks out a little bit. On the left side McKinnie vs. DE-Hall is another matchup that we need to win. There really is no excuse for our O-line to not start producing, this group is counted on to help our run game out and to date they have been disappointing.

The Pretty Boys - If I feel as though our WRs are bad, for this game I like our corp better than the Lion's WRs. After what seems like 8 years of the Lions taking a WR with their top 10 pick, they still do not have a productive group that strikes fear into opposing DBs. Roy Williams is solid, but something called Mike Furrey is no more feared than a Teletubby.

If the Vikings passing game is ever going to get going this is the week it will happen. Detroit is last in the league in pass defense. But it doesn't matter how wide open you are if you drop the ball.

Chester has a chance to be a factor but I think he production is too closely tied to the O-line so he is not a key, but could be a factor.

The Ball Hawks - As discussed Detroit's pass defense is last in the league. This is a key matchup as our WRs HAVE to find a way to be productive this week and attack their weakness. The Lion's LBs are solid and 1st round draft pick Ernie Simms is playing like a ROY candidate.

I like the matchup of our DBs vs the Detroit WRs. Like so many of our games if we can get pressure on Kitna our DBs will have a shot to create some turnovers.

Keys to the Game

  1. Turnovers to TDs - The Vikings need to win the turnover battle and we have to make Detroit pay for their mistake by puting 7 points on the board instead of scoring in 3 point increments.
  2. MN O-line - time for them to step up and earn their paychecks. The Detroit D-line is solid but a group we should beat.
  3. WRs hang on to the ball - these guys will get open and I am confident Brad will have time, but drops are killing us and they need to stop.
  4. Execute - For the first time all year the Vikings will be favored and are the more talented team, they need to execute and beat an inferior team.
Execute and Dominate that is the mantra for Sunday's game! And it would be nice to score a few TDs. I predict we score a TD on our opening drive and never look back.
MN - 27 Det - 13

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