Sunday, July 7, 2013

Minnesota Vikings Flop on Primetime Once Again

COMMENTARY | The final score of Sunday night's fiasco between the Minnesota Vikings and the Green Bay Packers was about the only thing that was respectable from the standpoint of the purple and white. Those who didn't watch the game may believe that the Vikings played an inspired game in the 44-31 Packers' victory, but nothing could be farther from the truth.
The Vikings were dominated offensively and defensively and if not for two garbage touchdowns against the Green Bay reserves, the final score would have been much more indicative of how the game was actually played.
Yes, Christian Ponder was ineffective for the most part, and the team's final two drives definitely padded his stats, but the real story on Sunday night was the defense, or lack of, as the Packers scored on all eight possessions and never punted once.
 The Minnesota defense was on the field for more than 40 minutes, although much of that can be squarely tied in with how dismal they were, allowing Green Bay to convert 13 of 18 third downs and were 2-for-2 on fourth down attempts.
Cordarrelle Patterson tied an NFL record by returning the opening kick-off 109 yards for a touchdown, although the Vikings later gave up a 93-yard punt return to Green Bay's Micah Hyde, thus nullifying the only good thing they did in the game.
As bad as the defense was, the low point of the game was the Vikings' bench in jovial spirits after scoring a garbage touchdown to make it a 41-24 game. It magnified how much coach Leslie Frazier and his staff have lost the team.
If there's a silver lining to the game, it's that it increased the chances that the Vikings will be sellers before Tuesday's trade deadline. Jared Allen and Toby Gerhart are the two names most often mentioned as being moved, although Jerome Simpson is another possibility, as he may have some value to another team.

The Vikings have no choice other than to blow things up and start anew. What they do before the trade deadline will show how far they're willing to go in their attempt to get back to respectability.
Allen Moody is an author and sports bettor living in Nevada. A newspaper sports reporter for 12 years, he has been a fan of the Minnesota Vikings since the 1970s.

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