I mean, let’s not get ahead of ourselves, right? The Vikings defense did give up 182 passing yards, 268 total yards, and 4.4 yards per play to the Raiders offense on Friday night. The Vikings, to counter those numbers and put some of this in perspective, threw for 109 yards, had 236 total yards, and averaged 3.6 yards per play. Now, on one hand, this was the preseason and the Vikings were obviously handcuffed by having Christian Ponder lead the third stringers throughout most of the second half, but it’s not like the defense shut people down completely. The Raiders were able to nickle and dime their way around the field.
BUT OH MY GOD FORGET ALL OF THAT DID YOU SEE THE VIKINGS DEFENSE THEY ACTUALLY CALLED REASONABLE PLAYS IN REASONABLE SITUATIONS AND GOT OFF THE FIELD ON THIRD DOWNS AND KEPT THE RAIDERS FROM CROSSING THE 50 FOR MOST OF THE FIRST HALF AND WHAT WAS HAPPENING AND WHY AM I SO ERECT RIGHT NOW YAY!!!
I mean …. Whatever. Football is back, kind of, and it was just good to see Mike Zimmer out there looking pissed off most of the time, and to see Adrian Peterson’s enormous muscles even just hanging out on the benches. I’ve missed you all so much.
Mushroom Stamp of Approval
After every game we award PJD’s special “Mushroom Stamp of Approval” (or Disapproval, depending on if we win or lose) to a player that is not named Adrian Peterson (unless he does something totally above and beyond) and not necessarily the best player by the numbers in the last game. No, it’s a totally arbitrary award system, based solely on the fact of whether said player made my rage engorged. For the first preseason game, we are stamping this brown forehead ribbon to Gerald Hodges. The second year linebacker led the team in tackles with five, had a tackle for loss, and blocked a field goal in the fourth quarter of a tight game. For a player in such a competitive position, making some big plays like that can mean he gets a roster spot. Because, shit, it’s not like we have much else better at linebacker.
Vikings of the Year Ranking
We’ll see how long this recap feature lasts. I am curious to see how my favorite Vikings players rank week after week. We’re going into the season kind of like a college football preseason poll, where none of these players have done anything to rankle my jimmies yet, but they may! We’ll see how rises and falls, and if by season’s end I have found new favorite players on this team or not. Here is my initial ranking, based entirely on selfish and unreasonable player preference, and some preseason game performance sprinkled in:
1. Adrian Peterson
2. Cordarrelle Patterson
3. Teddy Bridgewater
4. Everson Griffen
5. Greg Jennings
Paul Allen Was Awful
Listen, I don’t mean to beat a dead horse any more than the horse wants to turn into glue, but the one thing I DIDN’T enjoy about football was returning was having to listen to the “Voice of the Vikings” radio announcer, Paul Allen, from KFAN. Yes, there was a time when he was entertaining to listen to, but then something happened where he decided he was too popular to be fired, he stopped trying, and developed his catch phrases that only he likes, and his “knowledgeable” attitude makes me want to shoot my tip off. Also, he can’t read roman numerals. I keep finding people online (KFAN message boards, Reddit, etc.) who seem to still think he’s a fantastic announcer, and I guess I’ve come to the conclusion that those fans are bumf*ck morons who finger blast their aunts in their mobiles. So, to each their own, I guess. Regardless, I never thought I’d want to hear Mike Mayock’s voice so bad.
Nips and Notes
What other little tidbits from the first Vikings preseason game are noteworthy but don’t deserve their own entire section because I’m too lazy?
- Teddy Bridgewater’s first play from scrimmage almost made me faint. His drop back was crisp, his play action had me guessing, and he lasered a pass straight into my heart. Get ready for game time soon, Teddy, I can’t handle any more teasing.
- Kurt Coleman, the safety we signed from the Eagles, had a nice little game. I don’t see him as a long term answer, but as a heady special teams guy and a stop gap at the position if someone gets injured, we could do worse. He seemed a little redundant this offseason as a signing, but this game probably locked up his spot.
- I LOVED the dual “Minnesota” purple end zones at TCF Bank Stadium. It makes the Vikings look classier than they really are!
- I tried keeping my eyes on the rookie defensive backs this game, because I’m an amazing talent scout, but I thought I liked what I saw out of Jabari Price. Even Shaun Prater looked alright in spots – even though he’s from IOWA – which all makes me feel much better about our defensive back situation. That, and Frazier isn’t coaching.
- Adam Thielen makes this team, doesn’t he? Is that good or bad? Probably need to draft another receiver in 2015.
“Thanks for coming out,
Sorry your team sucks so bad,
Now get off my lawn.”
Hey, that was fun. Let’s do this again next weekend, against a different team! More throughout the week, including the Linval Joseph “accident.”