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  1. #1
    singersp's Avatar
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    NFC North bragging rights on the line

    Posted on Tue, Sep. 19, 2006

    [size=13pt]NFC North bragging rights on the line[/size]

    BY SEAN JENSEN
    Pioneer Press


    Their surprising 2-0 start has garnered them national attention, but the Vikings still cannot trump the Chicago Bears, the reigning NFC North champions.

    The Bears dominated two division opponents, the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions, to jump to a 2-0 start and generate a Super Bowl buzz.

    That is why the Vikings are so excited about this Week 3 matchup at the Metrodome.

    "Every game is big," Vikings cornerback Antoine Winfield said. "But this one is extra special. It's in the division. It's against Chicago. They're 2-0, and we're 2-0, and the winner takes the division lead.

    "Plus, we're at home," Winfield said, "so you don't want to lose at home."

    Earlier this year, Vikings coach Brad Childress said the Bears' defense was the standard in the division.

    Asked how his unit compared after two weeks, he said, "The Bears are fourth, and we're seventh, so you can assess it numerically."

    But Childress also said the Bears have shown improvements on the other side of the ball, boasting the NFL's seventh-ranked offense after two games, led by quarterback Rex Grossman.

    "They've got the leading passer in the National Football League right now, a full two yards above everybody else in his yards per completion," Childress said of Grossman. "A lot of times, you have to grow into those offenses. I think you're seeing, obviously, Rex Grossman mature, along with that offensive line and wide receivers. They are a formidable team, defensively and offensively.

    "Let's face it, they're the NFC North champs. Everything goes through Chicago."

    This weekend, however, the early NFC North bragging rights come through the Metrodome.

    And the Vikings want to send a message.

    "No one expected us to be 2-0 at this point," Winfield said, "so I think we can open some eyes if we win this week."

    But Winfield and his defensive teammates see another opportunity: a chance to upstage one of the NFL's most respected defenses.

    "Yeah, we're looking to make a statement," Vikings defensive end Darrion Scott said. "But we're looking to make a statement every time we step on the field. We want to be the best defense in the NFL, and I feel we've got the coaching staff that can put us in the position to stop guys and create pressure, and give us an opportunity to be one of the best defenses, if not the best."

    And the Vikings have noticed a change in the Bears' offense. The Bears didn't run as much in the first two games as they have in previous years, and Grossman has been slinging the ball all over the field, including some bombs.

    "I've seen Rex Grossman throw the ball down the field to (Bernard) Berrian the last two weeks," Winfield said. "So that's something to watch for."

    Vikings middle linebacker Napoleon Harris said Grossman has "asserted himself as the Bears' quarterback of the future," and cornerback Fred Smoot even said the young quarterback reminded him of Green Bay's Brett Favre.

    Smoot also said of the Bears' offense, "They got it clicking right now.

    "But our defense don't go for that. So something has to give."

    Meanwhile, the Vikings' offense has plenty of work to do against a potent Bears defense. Despite making timely plays in each of the past two games, the Vikings' offense has struggled during long stretches in both games.

    "We're leaving some plays out there," Vikings tight end Jermaine Wiggins said. "But we're doing what we have to do, and things will obviously get better."

    But those improvements had better come quickly, given the Bears' opportunistic defense.

    Although they beat two 2005 playoff teams, the Vikings fully expect this game to be their biggest test yet.

    "I think they're tougher, because in order for us to take the next step, we need to win the division, and they're the reigning division champs," Harris said. "So if we want to go the right way, we got to beat them first."

    Sean Jensen can be reached at [email protected]

    "If at first you don't succeed, parachuting is not for you"

  2. #2
    Mr. Purple's Avatar
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    Hellll yea I cant wait for this game.Braggin rights indeed our on the line! I wish I could be at it....everyone who is going to it, I want you to go NUCKING FUTS!!!!! haha




    Theres NOTHING greater then a Florida Gator!
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  3. #3
    ChiTownVike's Avatar
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    This game is gonna be so big! Especially with me being from ChiTown, It will give me HUGE bragging rights



    Thank you Josdin for the sig

  4. #4
    SciritaeVike is offline Training Camp
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    This game is going to be Huge, and i cant watch it.... >

    Cant wait to hear that the vikes downed another playoff contender!!!!

  5. #5
    oddmanout22287 is offline Pro-Bowler
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    Cannot wait to be at the 'Dome Sunday, it's gonna be nuts!
    PM me if you'd like a sig.

  6. #6
    Articnv's Avatar
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    Will be great game but i
    do beliieve the vikes can pull it off we dont have penetalities in the red zone

  7. #7
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    This is going to be a great game!
    It will be a defensive game, to say the least.
    Grossman is looking good, but he also faced the Lions and GB defenses.
    Our defense will be a better test of his ability.
    The injury to James sucks, but hopefully we will still be able to pressure the QB.
    Zeus wrote:
    When are you going to realize that picking out the 20 bad throws this year and ignoring the 300 good ones does not make your point?

    =Z=

  8. #8
    mr.woo's Avatar
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    true test of who wants it more right here....and i think the vikes do
    woo out
    just two corn cobs shy of a bushel

  9. #9
    whackthepack is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    "WilliamsonOfTroy" wrote:
    Hellll yea I cant wait for this game.Braggin rights indeed our on the line! I wish I could be at it....everyone who is going to it, I want you to go NUCKING FUTS!!!!! haha




    Williamson of Troy don't take this the wrong way but your avatar makes me think of a physco killer.
    What we've got here is failure to communicate.

  10. #10
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    Re: NFC North bragging rights on the line

    This quote says it all:

    "But Winfield and his defensive teammates see another opportunity: a chance to upstage one of the NFL's most respected defenses.

    "Yeah, we're looking to make a statement," Vikings defensive end Darrion Scott said. "But we're looking to make a statement every time we step on the field. We want to be the best defense in the NFL, and I feel we've got the coaching staff that can put us in the position to stop guys and create pressure, and give us an opportunity to be one of the best defenses, if not the best.""
    BANNED OR DEAD...I'LL TAKE EITHER ONE

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