The Minnesota Vikings (5-3) will be facing the Washington Redskins (4-3-1) at FEDEX Field and they are looking to break the current losing streak they’re on. The Vikings will be looking to get their first victory since week 5 and their first road win since week 3. Both teams are looking for a big win to boost their confidence and move towards the playoffs.
The Vikings defense has been in quite the rut as of late. While they rank third in the NFL allowing 298.9 yards per game and only allowing 15.8 points per game, which makes them first for points allowed things have not been the same since their first loss. But in the last three games they have given up 20 or more points, a far cry from their 5-0 start. A bigger problem they are having is third down success; Minnesota has now dropped to 12th in the NFL for opponents on third down conversation rate which sits at 38.3%. Careless penalties and missed tackles are hurting them and adding to the third down conversation rate problem. Case in point, Chicago and Detroit were a combined 14 of 28 on third downs. What the defense needs to focus on is that third down conversation issue. Keeping teams away from the redzone is must for them, going from only allowing 15.8 points per game to over 20 in the last three shows that this defense needs to regroup. Once they can get back on track with this issue things for this defense will fall back into place.
But the lingering problem for Minnesota is their offense, the Viking offense ranks 25th in the league with 19.4 points per game. The problem is the offensive line and that they are not giving quarterback Sam Bradford enough time to make those slow well thought out plays. He is needing to get the ball out quick because the offensive line aren’t holding back defenders for long and because he doesn’t have time to think he is making mistakes that are avoidable. Last week Bradford had to get the ball out fast and 25 of his 40 passes were behind the line of scrimmage or fairly close to it. IF Minnesota can get the run game going, they could start taking chances with throwing deep down the field without being pressured or sacked. We all knew from the start that this offensive line was going to be somewhat problematic, but this needs to change and fast if the Vikings want any chance of going to the playoffs this season. Brining in Pat Shurmur is a good start, but he might want to start working some miracles quick before the o-line brings the entire ship down.
The 5-0 start the Vikings had was magical. But its midnight now and the horse and carriage is going back to a pumpkin. I’m not losing hope that we can’t recapture that magic, I’m just saying it will be harder to make that pumpkin go back.
Watching the game? Here’s what you need to know:
TIME: 12:00 CST
CHANNEL: FOX (Local channel 9)
RADIO: KFAN FM- 100.3/KTLK AM- 1130