Published: Tue, 25 Oct 2016 02:09:28 GMT2016-10-25T02:09:28Z
Tue, 25 Oct 2016 02:09:28 GMT2016-10-25T02:09:28ZLook for Wiggins’ game, and persona, to have a bigger impact
Tue, 25 Oct 2016 01:57:11 GMT2016-10-25T01:57:11Z
Tue, 25 Oct 2016 01:18:38 GMT2016-10-25T01:18:38Z
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 22:33:08 GMT2016-10-24T22:33:08ZWolves coach lauds Saunders' impact on current roster.
Tue, 25 Oct 2016 01:12:20 GMT2016-10-25T01:12:20Z
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 23:16:05 GMT2016-10-24T23:16:05ZMike Zimmer used the words “dumb” and “uncharacteristic” often at his Monday news conference at Winter Park, a day after the Vikings lost to the Eagles 21-10 in Philadelphia. “We’re trying to figure out everything right now,” the Vikings coach said. “This is a gut check day. “We’re going to change some things up this week.” As he did following Sunday’s loss, Zimmer was specific about the mistakes his team made. Quarterback Sam Bradford was sacked six times, the Vikings had three turnovers – after having only one through five games – and made more mistakes in key situations than Zimmer cared to count. “I have faith in this football team,” Zimmer said. “But faith is belief without proof, and I have no proof yet. “The three years I’ve been here, we’re trying to be a smart football team,” he said. “So many of these things were uncharacteristic. “I’m anxious to see the determination this team has going forward. You never know. Every team is different, but I have a good feeling on these players typically and this football team.” While the offensive line took the brunt of the post-game criticism, Zimmer said “there were a whole bunch of things offensively that we didn’t do good. Everyone said how I said it was the offensive line not doing good. The offense in general wasn’t very good.” Safety Andrew Sendejo, who left the game because of an ankle injury, is day-to-day, “so we should be all right,” Zimmer said. Asked to evaluate the performance of Sendejo’s replacement, rookie Jayron Kearse, Zimmer said “average.”
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 22:44:58 GMT2016-10-24T22:44:58ZThe morning after every Vikings game, after a few hours of sleep and maybe an early flight back to Minneapolis, Star Tribune beat writer Matt Vensel will empty out his notebook and share a few opinions after getting a chance to gather his thoughts. It’s sort of like a Minnesota-centric version of the Monday Morning QB — except it’s a few thousand words and one haiku shorter. —————– In the days leading to Sam Bradford’s return to Philadelphia, the city of brotherly boos, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said that the quarterback’s understanding of the Eagles offense was “overrated” by the media when it comes to gleaning something useful they could use against the Eagles. The Eagles, on the other hand, believed their knowledge of their former starting QB — specifically his weaknesses — would allow them to rattle Bradford and help the Eagles knock off the NFL’s lone unbeaten team. The Eagles ended up being right, as they relied on zone blitzing — and one specific blitz featuring rolled coverage — to confuse Bradford in key spots. The most glaring example came late in the second quarter when the Vikings, who squandered a pair of prime scoring opportunities in the first quarter, moved into Eagles territory again. On second-and-8, defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz went to a look that had given Bradford, who was acquired in a stunning trade last month, trouble in Eagles practices. “There was one or two looks that we know Sam didn’t like,” Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins said after the game. “It was based off of practicing against him and knowing some things that he couldn’t pick up in camp.” On that play, the Vikings lined up with wide receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen to the left and a pair of tight ends on the right side of the line. Just before the snap, Eagles safety Rodney McLeod, who was lined up across from Thielen in the slot, crept up to the line of scrimmage to blitz. Joining him in attacking the left side of the Vikings offensive line was Eagles outside linebacker Mychal Kendricks. On the other side of the line, Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham dropped in to coverage. Without an obvious quick outlet to burn the five-man blitz, Bradford hesitated after taking the shotgun snap before cocking to throw downfield. He was a fraction of a second too late as McLeod had looped around left tackle Jake Long to knock the ball out of his throwing hand. After recovering the loose ball at their 48-yard line, the Eagles would go kick a field goal to go up 11-3 on their way to a dominant 21-10 win. “We knew traps would give him trouble,” Eagles defensive end Connor Barwin said. “We knew when he gets pressure he likes to get the ball outside right away. And so we brought some of that pressure.” Added McLeod: “It’s just a roll coverage. We blitz off the edge. You just pressure strong and roll the coverage. It was a great call by Schwartz.” Schwartz and the Eagles had blitzed just 13 times in their three previous games, according to ESPN. They sent five or more 12 times yesterday. “The zone pressures were affecting Sam,” said Jenkins, a Pro Bowl safety who also boasted after the game that the Eagles had the best defense in the NFL. “We did a good job disguising, making them all look the same.” Bradford, who in the first half coughed up his first three turnovers of his Vikings career, said that pressure didn’t cause him to take more risks. Heck, on many plays he didn’t even had enough time to be careless. “Obviously we knew that they were good up front,” Bradford said. “I’ll have to go back and look at the tape, but we have to figure out a way [to handle pressure better]. It involves all of us. I’ve got to figure out a way to get it out quicker. We’ve got to do a better job of staying on guys.” It would be a stretch to say that the Eagles’ familiarity with Bradford was the reason the Vik[...]
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 23:55:24 GMT2016-10-24T23:55:24ZIn honor of the milestone, we highlighted five of Parise’s best career goals/games.
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 22:56:12 GMT2016-10-24T22:56:12ZGophers tailback Rodney Smith was honored by the Big Ten after racking up 257 all-purpose yards against Rutgers.
Mon, 24 Oct 2016 22:59:07 GMT2016-10-24T22:59:07ZGophers basketball coach Richard Pitino knows his starting lineup if his team had to play a game right now.