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  1. #1
    little redhead is offline Asst. Coach
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    article on the defense

    Did anyone else see this article on the defense. I really shouldn't have enjoyed it that much as it is really not a flattering article about them but it gave me a little chuckle and thought it was clerverly written. The funny thing is I was thinking along the same lines when I read Mike Tice talking about simplifying the defense yet again. They have been simplifying it ever week wasn't sure how much more simple it could get.

    Vikings' defenders are slow to learnTOM POWERS


    If this week's defensive game plan were any simpler, the playbook would be entitled, "See Spot Run."

    "We think we've brought in smart players,' an exasperated Mike Tice said. "We think they should be able to handle what we want them to do. This is a simple defense."

    And it is getting simpler every week. If the Vikings coaches dumb down any more on defense, they'll have to pass out drool buckets.

    Yet it's not working. The mental errors are increasing rather than decreasing. Defenders are in the wrong place at the wrong time. They react with all the speed of a melting glacier. They zig when they should zag.

    There's only one possible conclusion: These fellows are dumber than a box of rocks.

    How did we get so many dumb football players on one defense unit?

    "My No. 1 criterion since I've been here has been to bring in smart players," Tice said. "We think we have intelligent players. We think."

    He didn't sound at all sure.

    When the enemy offense gets set to run a play, the defense is supposed to recognize the formation and react with quick "calls" and "checks." But Vikings defenders still are trying to figure out what's going on after the play has started.

    "They're making their checks when the ball is snapped," Tice said. "They're not ready to play. That does not allow you to play fast."

    It's odd because, at one time or another, I've spoken with virtually all the gentlemen who man the Minnesota defense. They don't appear to be particularly dense. Well, most of them don't. Some don't, at least. Yet it's as if they swallow stupid pills before they walk onto the field.

    "If the players can't transfer what they do in practice to the field on Sunday, you've got to cut back on stuff," Tice said. "We've cut out quite a bit. It's very simple. We're back to training camp, the first week, stuff. Fundamental football."

    See the ball carrier. Tackle the ball carrier.

    To which one of the defenders no doubt would remark: "Slow down, coach. You're going too fast."

    For Sunday's game against the Lions, the defensive game plan has been pared to the bone. There are no fancy blitzes or coverages. Our guys wouldn't remember them, anyway.

    You know, there are herbs that are supposed to promote mental clarity and well-being. Maybe Tice should take the fellows down to the vitamin store and treat them to some Siberian ginseng, scullcap, reishi, St. John's wort and ginkgo biloba.

    And maybe Tice ought to order himself up a double dose. After all, he's the fellow who brought in all these "smart" football players.

    However, the coach is keeping the faith. "Staying the course," he calls it. Although he seems alarmed by the apparent lack of gray matter on the defensive side of the football, he also sees other factors at work here.

    • Lousy field position. Tice correctly points out that his defense has had to defend a "short field' far too many times. The other team always seems to have great field position to start its drive. That's often the fault of the Vikings' special teams for allowing long kick returns.

    • After receiving all sorts of criticism — justifiable criticism — they are trying too hard. "I know it sounds silly," Tice said. "It sounds stupid. But they are trying too hard. They need to settle down."

    • A lack of confidence. "A little success gives you some confidence," Tice said. "You need success to have confidence." The Vikings' defense has neither.

    I don't know what the answer is. Maybe Tice should assign each defensive player a "study buddy" from the offense. Or maybe the organization can get a group discount at one of those Sylvan learning centers. And don't forget about the herbs.

    What we know for sure is that the Vikings will not be a serious playoff factor unless their defense can become halfway respectable. Right now, it is a joke.

    Maybe these fellows will look a lot smarter after Sunday's game. Maybe they'll read all the formations correctly, make the proper adjustments and carry out their assignments.

    Maybe they'll even remember their own names without having to write them on their wristbands.

  2. #2
    cajunvike's Avatar
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    article on the defense

    Dontarrious was the Scholar Athlete of the Year in the SEC last year...I hardly think that this qualifies as DUMB! And just because Hovan has a mullet, we shouldn't be stereotyping him!
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  3. #3
    little redhead is offline Asst. Coach
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    article on the defense

    I don't think really anyone is dumb. There might be a couple.. But I thought it was kind of funny. As it seems the more they try to simplify the defense the worse they are getting at least that seems to be the point of the article.

  4. #4
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    article on the defense

    "little redhead" wrote:
    I don't think really anyone is dumb. There might be a couple.. But I thought it was kind of funny. As it seems the more they try to simplify the defense the worse they are getting at least that seems to be the point of the article.
    I know...and the article does raise some good points, but it should really address the main reason that the defense is not better...lack of focus. This causes blown assignments, penalties, missed tackles and other stupid mistakes that shouldn't happen if the defense is focused on the task at hand.
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  5. #5
    cajunvike's Avatar
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    article on the defense

    I am going to go focus on some turkey...my firm is serving a free T-giving meal today for lunch...by 2:00PM, I will be fast asleep at my desk...LOL
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  6. #6
    little redhead is offline Asst. Coach
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    article on the defense

    Ooh.. Thanksgiving is my favorite meal... I love all the carbohydrates that go along with the turkey.. What is the stuff in Turkey that makes you sleepy? Triptaphan or something like that?

  7. #7
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    article on the defense

    I thought it was well written and made no excuses for what is going on with our defense.
    Tice said that they needed to settle down. I agree. If they can do that we should see better focus as a result.
    I do not think for one minute that they are dumb but they should not over analyze either.


    Personally, I don't think there is intelligent life on other planets. Why should other planets be any different from this one?

  8. #8
    cajunvike's Avatar
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    article on the defense

    "little redhead" wrote:
    Ooh.. Thanksgiving is my favorite meal... I love all the carbohydrates that go along with the turkey.. What is the stuff in Turkey that makes you sleepy? Triptaphan or something like that?
    You win the prize on the first guess..Tryptophan it is. I think that the prize is a night out with owensforpres, but I will have to confirm that with him.
    BANNED OR DEAD...I'LL TAKE EITHER ONE

  9. #9
    little redhead is offline Asst. Coach
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    article on the defense

    "cajunvike" wrote:
    "little redhead" wrote:
    Ooh.. Thanksgiving is my favorite meal... I love all the carbohydrates that go along with the turkey.. What is the stuff in Turkey that makes you sleepy? Triptaphan or something like that?
    You win the prize on the first guess..Tryptophan it is. I think that the prize is a night out with owensforpres, but I will have to confirm that with him.
    Ha ha you are so funny......Hope your Thanksgiving meal was good.

  10. #10
    cajunvike's Avatar
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    article on the defense

    "little redhead" wrote:
    "cajunvike" wrote:
    "little redhead" wrote:
    Ooh.. Thanksgiving is my favorite meal... I love all the carbohydrates that go along with the turkey.. What is the stuff in Turkey that makes you sleepy? Triptaphan or something like that?
    You win the prize on the first guess..Tryptophan it is. I think that the prize is a night out with owensforpres, but I will have to confirm that with him.
    Ha ha you are so funny......Hope your Thanksgiving meal was good.
    Pretty good...but I have eaten better tasting things!
    BANNED OR DEAD...I'LL TAKE EITHER ONE

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