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Vikings’ new defense can’t replace

Discussion in 'Green Bay Packers Fan Forum' started by IPBprez, Oct 21, 2005.

  1. IPBprez

    IPBprez Cheesehead

    Likes Received:
    Dec 14, 2004
    Lambeau Midwest
    Posted Oct. 21, 2005
    Chris Havel

    Vikings’ new defense can’t replace Moss’ quick strikes

    The Minnesota Vikings haven’t recovered from their season-opening loss.

    Darren Sharper’s interception and 88-yard touchdown return gave the Vikings a 7-0 lead over Tampa Bay and sent the Metrodome’s fans into delirium. In stunning fashion, Sharper’s big play seemed to confirm what many suspected.

    The Vikings’ offseason infusion of defensive talent was going to give coordinator Ted Cottrell the weapons to build a stifling defense. It also was going to more than offset the loss of the league’s most dangerous receiver, Randy Moss.

    One win, four losses and countless humiliation later, the Vikings’ defense has yet to materialize into something salvageable, much less something special.

    Sharper’s end zone celebration marks the last time the Vikings’ defense has been heard from. That was 19 quarters ago, time enough for Cottrell to blend cornerback Fred Smoot, linebacker Sam Cowart, nose tackle Pat Williams and Sharper with holdovers such as defensive tackle Kevin Williams and safety Corey Chavous.

    Bunch of blowouts

    After Tampa Bay responded to Sharper’s touchdown with a 17-point second-quarter barrage, the Vikings have been listless. Minnesota lost to Tampa Bay (24-13), Cincinnati (37-eight), Atlanta (30-10) and Chicago (28-3). The Vikings managed a 33-16 victory over star-crossed New Orleans in Week 3, but otherwise it has been dealt one blow-out loss after another.

    The greatest difference between the Packers (1-4) and the Vikings (1-4) going into Sunday’s game at the Metrodome is this: Green Bay has been competitive in each game while Minnesota has been quick to wave the white flag.

    While everyone focused on Moss’ touchdown-making ability, few discussed his will to win, his competitive fire and his ability to infuse confidence merely by his presence.

    Moss’ impact on the offense was underrated, while the significance of the defensive acquisitions was overrated. The Vikings’ problems aren’t limited to a collection of new defensive talent trying to learn one another. Their problem is trying to replace an uncommon talent such as Moss.

    Worth the trouble

    Moss’ boorish behavior was becoming a chronic problem. When the Vikings bungled games, and Moss sulked because of it, the focus was on the sulking rather than the bungling. One was just as bad as the other, but together they gave the Vikings a chance to make postseason play and upset a majority of the field.

    In hindsight, the Packers’ recent success at Minnesota is amazing given Moss’ presence and Green Bay’s defensive deficiencies. When Moss tore apart the Packers in last year’s NFC wild-card game, and then pretended to moon the Lambeau Field crowd, it was his way of blowing a good-bye kiss to Packers fans.

    Fans were outraged by the gesture, and understandably so, but they were being shortsighted. They won’t get a piece of Moss any time soon, but with him or without him, they find it great fun when the Packers knock off the Vikings. And it appears to be a lot easier to beat Minnesota without him than it was with him.

    Perhaps the most surprising thing is that it’s a surprise at all.


    As stated in the Fantasy Column article ---- if the rookie, Kyle Orton, could have a pretty decent outing aginst the Vicekings - then Brett Favre should have a field day --- but, I would add one more tidbit ----- as long as Flanagan doesn't play this game... we'll be fine on Offense; if he does play (and he shouldn't....) then the O-Line will suffer while the Vikings will go straight for Flanagan to put him out for the remainder of the year.... like any fighter that's injured - bad knee, whatever,... they'll go straight for the injured limb and destroy it... If Mike Sherman has any good sense left in him - he'll sit Flanagan for at least this game and then the next against the Bengals.. I, personally, would rather see Flanagan get totally healthy and wait until after the Steeler game before he starts again...

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