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  1. #1
    snowinapril's Avatar
    snowinapril is offline Jersey Retired
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    Is it our weak schedule or our D? Or is it Both?

    Sep 12 Dallas Won 35-17
    Sep 20 @Philadelphia Lost 16-27
    Sep 26 Chicago Won 27-22
    Week 4 BYE
    Oct 10 @Houston Won 34-28
    Oct 17 @New Orleans Won 38-31
    Oct 24 Tennessee Won 20-3
    Oct 31 N.Y. Giants Lost 13-34
    Nov 8 @Indianapolis Lost 28-31
    Nov 14 @Green Bay Lost 31-34
    Nov 21 Detroit Won 22-19
    Nov 28 Jacksonville Won 27-16
    Dec 5 @Chicago 1:00pm
    Dec 12 Seattle 1:00pm
    Dec 19 @Detroit 1:00pm
    Dec 24 Green Bay 3:00pm
    Jan 2 @Washington 1:00pm

  2. #2
    snowinapril's Avatar
    snowinapril is offline Jersey Retired
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    I think the D has improved but only slightly. We have been a little more opportunistic or maybe fortunate with the turnovers which helps. The weaker schedule has helped us look a little better than we actually are.

    The fact that we have not allowed more than 1 offensive TD in the last 2 games is definitelt a positive. I think it will help our D's confidence as they are getting healthy. The offenses that we face from here on out have struggled, and we need to consistantly dominate them. (GB is the only offense left that has been playing well as of late.) Even the domination of these teams will not be a good measuring stick to give us a definite answer to the questions about our D and their level of play.

    The important thing is the "one more play" attitude that the D has adopted from the Bud Grant speach before the Lions Game. The players seem to believe they are going to make that one more play to make a difference.

    Attitude might be the improvement needed to start playing more consistant D. We have young talent on D, and they have been stepping up.

    If this attitude will also appear in the tackling department, we will be fine going into the playoffs.

    Back to the original question, it is BOTH. Both the schedule and the slight improvement of attitude and play helped the D look better the last few weeks. They have taken advatage of the opportunities that they have been presented with.

  3. #3
    Del Rio Guest

    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    I personally think the D has improved in certain areas. The D line has been improving every week. They are one of the best in stats for the league with sacks and hurries.

    The turnovers have increased. The players are in positions to make the plays. Cotrell seems to have gotten a handle on the situation.

    But we still give up huge ammounts of yards. Our opponents 3rd down average is way high. We miss a lot of tackles. I think it is just the youngness of the D. I mean they are getting to the spot they just aren't doing what they need to do when they get there.

    That tells me that they are really concentrating on the scheme and taking the technique for granted. Older wiser players take the scheme for granted and close on the ball.

    This about sums up my thoughts on our D and what it needs.

    Picture a bunch of young guys given a task. They all have to do the task together yet they are judged individually. Young guy #1 does his task great the first time. Young guy#2 doesn't. Well they are both judged by coach. They relate to each others hardships. And become friends but guess what? Coach isn't on the field.

    That's why these young guys do great in practice because he is there in their ears. They want to make him happy and succeed.

    Well you get on the field he isn't there you look around and you have a bunch of people you have battled with and you are trying your best to NOT make a mistake. What this D needs is a vetran leader to pull it together. Someone on the field that is going through the trials with you that you want to make happy that you want to get a pat on the back from.

    And IMO that position and leader need to be at the LB spot. It has been for years. You have great vetrans in the CB spot saftey even some crafty old lineman, but you need a general. So as far as this year someone needs to take the reigns and have it all click.

  4. #4
    snowinapril's Avatar
    snowinapril is offline Jersey Retired
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    Good post DelRio

    Do you think Tice would be better off throwing out his player grading system for these young guys?

    Would that help them concentrate on the Team Effort instead of their individual grade?

    By the way DelRio, too bad about Kirilenko, 2 weeks is much better than the month they were talking about previously.

  5. #5
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    I don't think that this defense that good, I'm not even sure that they are adequate...way too many rushing yards given up and they have the uncanny ability to make 2nd and 3rd rate QBs look like Hall of Famers. They seem to have adopted the bend-but-don't-break style of defense which worked just well enough against jacksonville (and should be good enough for detroit, chicago and washington) but as much as it hurts me to say this, the packers will chew up the defense unless play improves. Fortunately the packers defense will not be able to stop our offense because as it has been shown repeatedly this season the only team that can stop the Vikings offense IS the Vikings offense when they shoot themselves in the foot.

  6. #6
    snowinapril's Avatar
    snowinapril is offline Jersey Retired
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    "vikefan in WI" wrote:
    I don't think that this defense that good, I'm not even sure that they are adequate...way too many rushing yards given up and they have the uncanny ability to make 2nd and 3rd rate QBs look like Hall of Famers. They seem to have adopted the bend-but-don't-break style of defense which worked just well enough against jacksonville (and should be good enough for detroit, chicago and washington) but as much as it hurts me to say this, the packers will chew up the defense unless play improves. Fortunately the packers defense will not be able to stop our offense because as it has been shown repeatedly this season the only team that can stop the Vikings offense IS the Vikings offense when they shoot themselves in the foot.
    The RBs look good because the LBs weren't making the initial tackle in the gap. A lot of 0-2 yd gains were have turned into 6-9 yd gains because of tackling miscues. Our offense getting back to full throttle would help the run D if the opponents have to pass to get into the game. That is what happened early in the season.

    The QB's?????? We have dropped atleast 7 or 8 possible INTs, that is huge. Seahawks have the most INTs something like 17. We only have 5, if you add the 8, we would be up there along with our line play we would be considered a good D. The 8 INT's would equate to less points on the board for the opponent. Even if we had 4 of the 8 INTs that would be respectable.

  7. #7
    Del Rio Guest

    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    I really don't think his grading system would cause a problem, they seem to want to grade out well for coach, but it just isn't enough to want. The missed tackles are a result of their brains giving 100% to doing what they were taught correctly. Like being 3 yards deep, or containing an area and not focusing on why they need to be there. I imagine it is just a learning curve thing. At WSU it took me a while to get the hang of it. But I assume the NFL is 100% harder.

    In a vetrans mind he sees the formation. Keys off on his guy he is watching makes the read gets to his spot then pauses thinks and acts

    The rookies look like they are thinking OK they are single back strong right, ok I'm right side so I shift in one gap. Then they shift back perhaps designed but more then likely "Oh shit i only shift in when the TE is lined up on the line. Then it's oh crap they snapped the ball. I hope this is my spot, yep this has to be my spot. Here comes average running back#1 ............weak arm tackle.......damn he is strong.

    I mean if you had someone to run up and say hey Udeze B gap!! B-gap!!! then between plays come up and say hey notice he was strong side. Keep and eye on that.

    I mean the respect for that player and desire to learn is so great. Just in those few seconds of information that would stick with you longer then anything. Lessons learned on the field only take once. Lessons in class take a lot of repitition. And knowing the vetran whom you respect has your back you calm down a bit and can focus on the game.

    As far as the Jazz that hurts. You know the Jazz are a lot like the Vikes LOL. They have been in a bit of a slump, but thats what is good about the NBA. It's a long season I still feel they will get a low seed in the west.

  8. #8
    ItalianStallion's Avatar
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    The defense isn't good, but they are improving especially when it counts, at the end of games.

    If they havn't improved alot in production (which they have since the start of the season), the they have improved their mental thoughness.


    I m like a Ja Rule poster, cause I'm off the wall.

  9. #9
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    I agree with you snow, but missing tackles and dropping INTs are signs of a mediocre defense. As it stands now, we are the only team to give up 100+ rushing yards for the last five games, we cannot consistantly pressure the QB and we have given up a ton of points. I also agree that once the offense starts hitting on all cylinders that the other teams will have to resort to the pass more, thereby allowing the Vikings to play aggressive pass defense without being too concerned about the run. The bears game should be a confidence builder.

  10. #10
    cheesefree is offline Starter
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    Be HONEST - Has the DEFENSE really improved?

    The defense has more speed this year, but they are young and make a lot of mental errors. The dropped INT's are an issue because these are the same guys who made all those INT's last year. They can't stop the run in the first half, so these RB's are racking up big yards before halftime.
    [b:6191debc1d]it ain t easy being cheesy[/b:6191debc1d]
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