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vikings.com Mailbag

Posted Oct 16, 2009

Do you have a comment or question? Send it to the vikings.com Mailbag! Every Friday we’ll post several comments or questions as part of the Monday Morning Mailbag feature. Although we can’t post every comment or question, we will reply to every question submitted.

To submit a comment or question to the mailbag, send an email to Mike Wobschall at wobschallm@vikings.nfl.net. Remember to include your name and town on the email.

Hi Mike,

First, thank you for providing the live chats on game day.I think it is a great resource for fans! What is your assessment of C John Sullivan's play so far this season?I think he has done a great job and think he is a player the Vikings need to sign in the future.

-- Jodi Root

To this point I think Sullivan has done a good job. I’ve had my eye isolated on him periodically through the first 5 games and I’ve seen some good plays and some not so good plays. For example, if you watch on Adrian Peterson’s 2nd TD run last Sunday, Sullivan was involved in a block where the Rams DT was completely and quickly taken out of the play. On the other side, I was paying particular attention to Sullivan on one play in the Cleveland game and Browns NT Shaun Rogers rushed past him for a sack. So those are just 2 isolated plays from separate games, but I think it properly illustrates the ebb and flow that’s going on with Sullivan’s play to this point.

Generally speaking, though, I think Sullivan’s done a nice job of transitioning to the starter. From a mental standpoint, there seem to be zero concerns. Now, as he goes through a full season for the 1st time as a starter, I think you’ll see him gradually improve every game while also learning some lessons along the way. I’m encouraged by his play so far.

Our 3 largest margins of victory have come against the Browns, Lions and Rams, and in those 3 games Favre’s pass attempts were in the low 20s. Against the 49ers and Packers, wins but closer wins, Favre had 31 and 46 pass attempts. Do you think there’s a correlation there?

-- Peter S., Manitoba

This is a good observation, Peter, and I do think there could be a correlation, although I don’t think it’s as direct as the numbers would suggest. To me, the Vikings are a run-first team and if Favre has fewer pass attempts than usual, that probably means the Vikings are having success running the ball.

But that’s just a surface level analysis and extension of the point Peter made in his question. To go a bit deeper, but without consulting any of the Vikings coaches or doing a bunch of research, I would suggest that completions are the more telling statistic than attempts. I say that if the Vikings total number of pass completions and rushing attempts equals somewhere between 44 and 48, then they’ll have a good mix of run and pass.

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