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Griffen, Vikings Looking to Pressure Rivers, Chargers Again

Posted Aug 25, 2016

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Everson Griffen was a terror in a Week 3 victory last season against the Chargers.

One of Griffen’s most dominant games of the season included three tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and an astonishing 10 quarterback hurries tallied by Vikings coaches.

Minnesota and San Diego meet again at noon (CT) Sunday in the third preseason game for both teams to open U.S. Bank Stadium.

But all that mattered to Griffen in last season’s game was the scoreboard, and the Vikings claiming their second straight win to climb to 2-1.

“I had a real good game against them, but there’s always room for improvement,” Griffen said. “We won the game, and that’s the biggest part of the whole thing.

“As long as we’re winning games, that’s all that matters,” he added. “You’re going to have off days and on days, but as long as we’re winning, that’s what you look for.”

Griffen was part of a Vikings defense that sacked San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers four times. Press box statisticians tallied 13 hits on Rivers by Vikings defenders in Minnesota’s 31-14 win.

“We played aggressive and got off of blocks and made tackles,” said Griffen, who finished the season with 10.5 sacks. “We did all the right things to win the game.

“When you do that in the NFL, it’s hard to get beat,” he added.

Although Sunday’s matchup doesn’t count in the standings, the third preseason game is usually the one that most closely resembles a regular season contest.

Griffen knows the Vikings defense will get a stern test in Rivers, who threw for a career-high 4,792 yards last season and 29 touchdowns.

Rivers has thrown for at least 4,000 yards seven times in his career and is fifth among active players with 41,447 career passing yards.

Griffen said the key against Rivers is getting quick pressure against the savvy veteran.

“He gets the ball out of his hands quick and had a good hard count,” Griffen said. “You have to stick to your rush plan, stick to your game plan and go out there and work your moves.

“You have to make the tackles and plays when you can,” he added.