Game Preview: Vikings vs. Cardinals

Posted Aug 13, 2014



After a victory in his first preseason game as a head coach, Mike Zimmer will lead the Minnesota Vikings against the Arizona Cardinals on Saturday, August 16, 2014.

In last week’s victory, Matt Asiata rushed for a 1-yard touchdown to lead the Vikings in the 10-6 victory over Oakland. Free agent signing Kurt Coleman also intercepted a pass. Saturday’s game marks the first preseason meeting between Minnesota and Arizona since 2004.

This will mark the final home preseason game in 2014. The Vikings will return to TCF Bank Stadium Week 2 of the regular season to continue the Vikings two-year stay on the campus of the University of Minnesota. The Vikings will play the 2014 and 2015 seasons at TCF Bank Stadium while the team’s new stadium is being built downtown at the same site as the Metrodome. Next Saturday the Vikings will travel to Kansas City to play the Chiefs in their third preseason game while Arizona will host Cincinnati on Sunday.

The Vikings added 40 new faces to the roster since the conclusion of the 2013 season, including 10 players selected in the 2014 NFL Draft. The Vikings selected two players in the 1st round of the draft, LB Anthony Barr (#9 overall) and QB Teddy Bridgewater (#32 overall).

KARE (Channel 11 in Minneapolis)
Play-By-Play: Paul Allen Analyst: Pete Bercich
Sideline Reporter: Greg Coleman/Ben Leber

KFAN-FM 100.3/KTLK-AM 1130
Play-by-Play: Paul Allen Analyst: Pete Bercich
Sideline Reporter: Greg Coleman/Ben Leber
Pre-Game Show: Mike Mussman – 6:30 p.m. CST

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

* The Vikings have a combined record of 141-96-3 (.593) in their 240 preseason games.
* The team has finished undefeated in the preseason 6 times (1964, ‘65, ‘73, ‘92, ‘98, ‘01).
* The Vikings have finished with a .500 record or better 40 times in the team’s 53 preseasons.
* In the 40 previous preseasons when the Vikings have finished at .500 or better, the team has gone on to finish at .500 or better 31 times in the ensuing regular season.
* In the 13 preseasons when the Vikings have finished below .500, the team has gone on to finish below .500 seven times in the ensuing regular season.
* Mike Zimmer won his first preseason game with the Vikings when Minnesota beat Oakland 10-6 last week.

• The Vikings and Cardinals have played eight times during the preseason with the Vikings holding a 5-3 series lead.
• The Vikings own the advantage in the regular season series. The teams have met 25 previous times in the regular season with Minnesota holding an edge at 15-10-0.
• The last time Minnesota and Arizona met in the preseason was on 8/14/04, a 23-6 Vikings victory.
• The Vikings and Cardinals have met twice in the NFC Divisional Round of the playoffs. Minnesota holds a 2-0 edge over Arizona in postseason action.
• The Vikings and Cardinals have played in three overtime games including the preseason, the Vikings have won all three extra-time games.
• The last time the Cardinals and Vikings met in the preseason was in 2004, a Vikings victory. The only current Viking player that appeared in that game was LS Cullen Loeffler.

* S Harrison Smith recorded his first career interception when he picked off a John Skelton pass and returned it 31 yards for a touchdown, the first of his career.
* RB Adrian Peterson has surpassed the 150-yard rushing mark twice against the Cardinals, posting 165 yards on 12/14/08 and most recently rushed for 153 yards and a touchdown against Arizona on 10/21/12.
* QB Matt Cassel threw for 345 yards with three touchdowns, while completing 20-of-36 passes against Arizona on 12/21/08, including a 76- yard touchdown to Randy Moss while with New England.
* LB Chad Greenway recorded nine tackles twice against Arizona, corralling nine Cardinals on 11/7/10 and 10/9/11.

• Cardinals assistant head coach/offense Tom Moore is a native of Owatonna, MN and was the Vikings assistant head coach/QBs from 1990-1993.
• Cardinals cornerbacks coach Kevin Ross hail from the same hometown as Vikings LB Gerald Hodges, Paulsboro, NJ and was the assistant secondary coach for the Vikings from 2003-2005.
• Cardinals assistant director of pro scouting Malik Boyd was a defensive back for the Vikings in 1994-95.
• Vikings LB Jasper Brinkley played for the Cardinals in 2013, appearing in 15 games and posting 30 tackles.
• Vikings TE Kory Sperry played nine games with the Cardinals in 2012- 13, including two starts between the two seasons.
• Cardinals TE John Carlson, a native of Litchfield, MN played in 27 games for the Vikings during the 2012-13 campaigns.

• Vikings running backs coach Kirby Wilson worked with a number of current Cardinal coaches during his tenure as the runnings back coach in Pittsburgh, including, Cardinals Head Coach Bruce Arians who served as offensive coordinator in Pittsburgh from 2004-2011. Wilson also worked with Arizona Offensive Coordinator Harold Goodwin, Special Teams Coach Amos Jones and assistant Offensive Line Coach Larry Zierlein during his seven-season stint with the Steelers. Wilson coached Cardinals RB Jonathan Dwyer in Pittsburgh during the first four years of his NFL career.

• Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph, S Harrison Smith, C John Sullivan and S Robert Blanton all attended Notre Dame while Cardinals TE John Carlson, WR Michael Floyd, FB Robert Hughes and TE Troy Niklas all played their collegiate career for the Fighting Irish.
• Vikings LS Cullen Loeffler and DE Brian Robison attended Texas the same time as Cardinals C and Edina native Lyle Sendlein. Vikings DT Kheeston Randall played for the Longhorns the same time as Cardinals LBs Sam Acho and Alex Okafor.

• Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald is a native of Minneapolis and worked as a ball boy for the Vikings growing up. Arizona Connections
• Vikings DE Everson Griffen hails from Avondale, AZ where he attended Agua Fria High School, earning consensus All-American honors in addition to being named Super Prep, and Gatoraide Circle of Champions Player of the year for Arizona.
• Vikings P Jeff Locke graduated from Mountain Ridge High School in Glendale, AZ, where he was a Parade All-American and played in the Under Armour All-American Game.
• Vikings Vice President of Legal Affairs/CAO Kevin Warren is a native of Tempe, AZ and played basketball at Grand Canyon University. His father, Morrison, played football at ASU and was inducted to the Arizona Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.