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Game Preview: Vikings vs. Browns

Posted Sep 17, 2013

MINNESOTA VIKINGS VS. CLEVELAND BROWNS
WEEK 3 • SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2013 - NOON CT

The Minnesota Vikings (0-2) host the Cleveland Browns (0-2) in their home opener on Sunday, September 22 at Mall of America Field with kickoff scheduled for noon. Minnesota owns the series record 11-3 and holds a 7-1 mark at home against the Browns. The Vikings have won 4 consecutive games over the Browns.

The Vikings are hosting their home opener in Week 3 for the 1st time since 2009. That season, the Vikings also traveled to Cleveland for their most recent matchup against the Browns. The Vikings defeated the Browns 34-20 behind a 3-TD perfromance from Adrian Peterson.

The Vikings are looking to avoid a 0-3 start for the 1st time since 2011 and seek to copy their 2008 effort and earn a playoff berth despite starting 0-2.

TELEVISION: CBS (Channel 4 in the Twin Cities)
Play-By-Play: Kevin Harlan Analyst: Solomon Wilcots

RADIO: KFAN-FM 100.3/KTCN-AM 1130
Play-by-Play: Paul Allen Analyst: Pete Bercich
Sideline Reporter: Greg Coleman
Pre-Game Show: Mike Mussman – 10:00 a.m. CT

KFAN and KTCN serve as the flagship stations for the 72-station, 5-state Vikings Radio Network.

STAT OF THE WEEK
Minnesota rookie Cordarrelle Patterson opened the game with a 105-yard kickoff-return touchdown, tied for the longest in team history (Percy Harvin, 9/30/12). Patterson’s 105-yard kickoff-return is tied for the fourth-longest by a rookie in NFL history, trailing Randall Cobb (108 yards, 9/8/11), Noland Smith (106 yards, 12/17/67) and Roy Green (106 yards, 10/21/79).

NORSEMAN NOTABLES
• K Blair Walsh tied Ryan Longwell for 1st in team history with 11 career 50 yard FGs. Walsh is a perfect 11-for-11 from 50 yards in his 18-game career.
• Minnesota has started the same 5 offensive lineman in 19 straight games, including playoffs.
• WR Jerome Simpson ranks 4th in the NFL with a 21.0 yard per catch average (9 for 189).
• DE Jared Allen leads all DE’s in the NFL with 96 consecutive regular season games started.
• With 100 yards rushing at Chicago (9/15), Peterson now has 38 career 100 yard rushing games.
• Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph’s 13 career receiving TDs rank 5th all-time among TEs in franchise history. He is 3rd in the NFL among TEs over the past 2 seasons with 11 TD catches.
• DT Kevin Williams snared his 5th career INT in Week 2, which set a new Vikings record for INTs by a defensive lineman and is tied for the NFL mark among DTs- matching former Cincinnati standout Dan Wilkinson’s 5.
• Kevin Williams will start his 158th career game on Sunday, passing Alan Page for most career starts by a Vikings DT and trailing only Jim Marshall (270) and Carl Eller (201) for starts by defensive linemen.
• DE Brian Robison scored his 1st career TD on a 61-yard FR. It was the Vikings 1st fumble
returned for a TD since Antoine Winfield did so against the Eagles on 12/28/10. Robison’s return is the 3rd-longest among Vikings linemen in team history and 3 of the 4 longest have been recorded by current Vikings- Kevin Williams (77t), Robison (61t) and Jared Allen (52t).
• Cleveland is 1 of 4 teams Jared Allen has not recorded a sack against in his 10-year career, he also has not brought down a QB from New Orleans, Pittsburgh or Seattle in his career.
• Adrian Peterson set a Vikings opening-day record with 180 yards rushing and 3 TDs in 2009.
• The Vikings currently rank tied for 2nd in the NFL with only 8 penalties called against the club.
• The Vikings defeated Cleveland in the 1969 NFL title game to advance to Super Bowl IV against Kansas City. The game marked the final NFL Championship Game as the AFL and NFL merged the following season.

VIKINGS-BROWNS CONNECTIONS

• Browns CEO Joe Banner was with Philadelphia while Head Coach Leslie Frazier (1999-2002), Offense Coordinator Bill Musgrave (1998), Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Tom Kanavy (1995-2005), Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach Martin Streight, Head Athletic Trainer Eric Sugarman (2000-05) and Assistant Athletic Trainer Tom Hunkele (2000-05) all spent time with the organization. Vikings TE Coach Jimmie Johnson also played for the Eagles from 1995-98. Browns GM Michael Lombardi (1997-98) and Assistant GM Ray Farmer (1996-98), who played LB for the Eagles, were also with Philadelphia.
• OL Coach Jeff Davidson spent the 2005 and 2006 season with the Cleveland Browns.
• Cleveland’s OLBs Coach Brian Baker coached for the Vikings from 2001- 05, tutoring the Vikings defensive line and linebackers in that time.
• Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier coached with Browns DBs Coach Louie Cioffi with the Bengals from 2003-04.
• Browns Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach Chris DiSanto served as an intern for the Vikings in 2007.
• Cleveland Brown’s ILBs Coach Ken Flajole served as the Rams Defensive Coordinator while Vikings DL Coach Brendan Daly held the same title in St. Louis from 2009-12.
• Browns WR Tori Gurley spent time on the Vikings practice squad in 2012.
• Browns assistant coach Bobby Babich played collegiately at North Dakota State from 2002-05.
• Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman’s brother, Chris Spielman, was with the Browns in 1999 before retiring from the NFL.

LOCAL CONNECTIONS
• Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph is the only Ohio native on the roster, hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio.
• Browns TE MarQueis Gray played at the University of Minnesota.

NFL CONNECTIONS
• Vikings GM Rick Spielman and Assistant GM George Paton were with the Miami Dolphins while Browns Offensive Coordinator Norv Turner served in the capactiy for Miami from 2002-03.

COLLEGE CONNECTIONS
• Browns LS Christian Yount snapped to Vikings P Jeff Locke at UCLA from 2009-10 and was teammates with Vikings G Jeff Baca.
• Vikings Personnel Consultant Paul Wiggin enjoyed a standout career with the Browns from 1957-67, earning a spot on the Browns’ All-Time Team and being recognized as a Browns Legend in 2008.
• Vikings DT Chase Baker and Browns DL Billy Winn were teammates at Boise State from 2008-11.
• Browns TE Jordan Cameron played with Vikings TE Rhett Ellison and T Matt Kalil from 2008-10 and DE Everson Griffen from 2008-09 at USC.

VIKINGS BIG DAYS VS. BROWNS
• As a member of the Kansas City Chiefs, QB Matt Cassel finished 22- of-40 passing for 331 yards and 2 TDs against Cleveland on 12/29/09.
• In the 2009 season opener, RB Adrian Peterson tied a career-best with 3 rushing TDs against Cleveland on 9/13/09. Peterson finished the game with 180 rushing yards.
• WR Greg Jennings caught 5 passes for 52 yards while playing for the Green Bay Packers in their 31-3 win over the Browns on 10/25/09.
• DE Jared Allen recorded 7 tackles and 1 pass defensed as a member of the Kansas City Chiefs in a game against Cleveland on 12/3/06.
• DT Kevin Williams recorded 2 tackles and 1.0 sack and recovered a fumble in the Vikings 34-20 victory over the Browns on 9/13/09.

VIKINGS-BEARS SERIES NOTES
• The Vikings hold a 11-3-0 advantage over the Browns in the 16 games between the two franchises.
• The last time the Vikings and Browns met was on 9/13/09, a Vikings 30-20 victory.
• This will be the 1st regular season meeting between the Vikings and Browns during Leslie Frazier’s tenure as the Vikings head coach.
• The Vikings and Browns have played one overtime game in series history, with the Browns defeating the Vikings 23-17 on 12/17/89.
• The Vikings and Browns have met in the postseason once, a Vikings victory in the NFL Championship Game on 1/4/70, sending the Vikings to Super Bowl IV.
• The Vikings largest margin of victory in club history came against the Browns in 1969 after a 51-3 victory in Minnesota.

A WIN WOULD...
• Give Head Coach Leslie Frazier his first victory over the Cleveland Browns since taking over as the Vikings head coach.
• Give the Vikings their 5th straight victory over the Browns dating back to 1992.
• Improve Minnesota’s record at home against the Browns to 8-1.


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