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The Big Chief's Saints vs. Vikings game notes

What you need to know for tonight's Monday Night matchup

Deke Bellavia
September 11, 2017 - 10:57 am
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New Orleans Saints vs Minnesota Vikings

Monday September 11, 2017

U.S. Bank Stadium 6:10PM Kickoff

 

Series History:  The Vikings lead the series 18-10 over the Saints.  The Saints have won the last three meetings between the two with their last victory over the Vikings coming back in 2014 when the Saints won 20-9. 

 

The Minnesota Vikings

Division:  NFC North

2016 Record:  8-8

Head Coach:  Mike Zimmer (26-22 in 3 seasons)

Defensive Coordinator:  George Edwards

Offensive Coordinator:  Pat Shurmur

 

Top Offensive Players:  QB Sam Bradford, RB's Dalvin Cook and Latavius Murray, WR Laquon Treadwell

Defensive Standouts:  DE Danielle Hunter

Special Teams:  KR/PR Marcus Sherels

Minnesota finished as the best team in the league last year in kickoff returns.  The Vikings averaged a league best 27.3 yards per return.  With that said the Vikings top KR is no longer there as Cordell Patterson departed and left for the Oakland Raiders. 

 

What they do well

The Vikings are a defensive minded team.  During the 2016 season the Vikings got off to a hot 5-0 start before falling to 3-8 in their last 11 games of the regular season.  Minnesota was 3rd in total defense a season ago allowing 314.9 yards per game.  And Minnesota had one of the league's premier pass defenses ranking 3rd allowing only 207.9 yards each game.

 

Where they are weak

When it comes to deciding what area a team is weak in let’s just say it is not hard at all calling that area for the Vikings.  The Vikings are weak up front on their O-Line according to all the people we talked to that cover Minnesota.

Minnesota O-Line is an area that at the very least would have to be considered a weak point.

Minnesota started out 5-0 last season only yo fall apart going a dismal 3-8 down the stretch to finish up 8-8.  And a major reason why was the play of their O-Line.  And this pre-season the Vikings as a starting unit did not play one snap together.  And Minnesota went out and obtained their two starting tackles who will play together for the first time on Monday hosting the Saints.

 Of course all of these numbers are predicated on last season's stats.  And in week one of a season that's pretty much all we have to go by.  The Vikings were 28th in total offense gaining

 

The Breakdown

Saints Offense versus Vikings Defense

This is what the price for admission is for.  The battle of strength’s has the Saints Offense against the Vikings Defense.  New Orleans will look to establish a ground game and if they can it would bode well in helping curtail the Vikings pass rush.

And on the flip side the more pressure the Vikings can get on the Saints with their line the better chance they will have at forcing Brees in to some rush judgement throws.  Vikings pass rusher and former LSU player Danielle Hunter is set for another monster season and the Saints are fully aware of his skill set.

Vikings Offense versus Saints Defense

Ok as in the words of Samuel Jackson in that prehistoric flick Jurrasic Park, "hold on to yo butts."  Now we will see if what we witnessed in the pre-season was a legit vision of things to come or a mirage.

Yes the Saints Defense does enter the 2017 season better than it did a year ago.  But will the end result of the defensive play help produce more wins?  The Vikings had the worst offense in the league during the pre-season.  The Saints had one of the best defensive units during that same time span.  Something has to give right?

If the Saints are an improved defense then they should be able to get some heat on QB Sam Bradford.  Minnesota has said they are re-committed to the run game.  And the Saints should get a hefty dose of ground action.

 

The Big Chief Says

Hey I’m a man that pays attention to things that happen often.  The Saints have improved on defense.  And in the Sean Payton Era the Saints worst finish on offense has been 6th.  Sure the Vikings are at home and it is opening week.  But the Saints and Drew Brees are hot against the numbers.  The Saints are 8-1 in their last 9 games as a road underdog.  Hey I’m not the smartest man but I know that even that scarecrow that wanted a brain knew to ease his ass on down the Yellow Brick Road!

Take the Saints and get ready for one of the best weeks in Big Easy history! 

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