Monday, September 17, 2007

Vikings v Lions Recap

Well that sucked. It is hard to quantify if that was an exciting game to watch (some big plays, momentum swings, overtime, etc.) or one of the ugliest games ever witnessed (7 turnovers, 16 penalties, missed opportunities and critical mistakes). Since we lost, my vote goes to ugly.


QB (F) - sorry TJax, but that was ugly. The first drive things looked very good until the INT on 3rd and 2. From that point on I kept wanting Adam Weber to run out onto the field to lead the offense's next drive. More than anything I'm concerned with the lack of mental toughness and ability to make even 1 big play when we really needed it (and there were multiple opportunities). 1 play could have won the game for us.

RB (B+) - I wanted to see a point when as a team we just decided to dominate the line of scrimmage and run, run, run the ball. We obviously didn't but I put that on the coaches. Purple Jesus and MeMo both did a solid job running the ball and were even better after catching the ball. AP's catch and run to the goalline where he broke 4 tackles was very impressive. No TDs and no 100 yd performance keeps this in the B range.

WR (C) - It is hard to fault them for anything as the passing game was handicapped by the QB not the receivers. This is a hard group to grade.

OL (C-) - TJax had a little too much pressure and I never saw a time when we controlled the line of scrimmage. I expected more from this group in Week 2.

Overall Offense (D+) - AP and MeMo looked good but the rest was anywhere from below average to horribly bad. Ford Field is not that tough of a place to play and the Lion's D isn't exactly the steal curtain. If we get knocked off our game plan and appear rattled on Ford Field, how are we going to respond to Lambau, Soldier, Cowboy Stadium or Mile High (in Dec)?

DBs (B-) - gave up a lot of yards but they threw the ball 56 times. 3 picks, some very hard hits and helped keep the Lions to 4/13 on 3rd down. Things could have been much worse, the Lions are going to rack up yards on most defenses they see. On a related note I am impressed with McCauley, that kid will be just fine.

LB (B-) - stuffed the run as expected helping to keep them under 60 yards. My biggest complaint is they had difficulty getting to Kitna on the blitz. With 56 pass attempts and the amount of blitzing we did I would have liked to see Greenway or EJ get a shot or two on Kitna. Not bad day, but not a great day either.

DL (B+) - 3.5 sacks, held Lions to 56 yards rushing and scored. This group has really stepped up to be what we've been asking for since 2006.

Overall Defense (B) - again, lots of yards but they did their part to put us in position to win the game. A defensive score and forcing several turnovers should be enough to beat a team like the Lions.

This was a frustrating game. When you have a chance to win a divisional road game you HAVE to take advantage. Longwell nearly bailed out an abysmal offense, but really the better team won yesterday.

I think the Lions are getting overrated quickly as people so desperately want to anoint this year's surprise team. I am on record to say it will not be the Lions. Don't forget folks they were nearly as bad as the Vikings yesterday. They made a ton of mistakes as well, managed 1 big play in OT to win it while their defense managed to stop what looks like one of the worst offenses in the league. I'm not sold on Detroit.

Fortunately the Vikings get a chance to rebound quickly. The Chiefs are not strong this year and this is another winable game.

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