Monday Morning Mailbag

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Monday Morning Mailbag

Posted Oct 7, 2013

Do you have a comment or question? Send it to the vikings.com Mailbag! Every Monday during the season we’ll post several comments and/or questions as part of the vikings.com 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.

The defense has allowed an average of 30 points a game. They are going to have to start giving up fewer points if they want to make a run at the division title or playoffs. Anyone out there we can pick up to help on defense that you can think of?
-- Joe B.
Princeton

Vikings

 The Vikings have allowed 29.0 points per game through four games, so Joe is correct that in order to achieve their goals this season the Vikings must find a way to reduce that number significantly. The good news is we’ve seen different aspects of this defense play well at times this season. The secondary did a great job against Calvin Johnson in Week 1, for example, but the defense as a whole has struggled against running backs at times – Reggie Bush, Matt Forte and Le’Veon Bell have all found success against the Vikings. The pass rush was slow to go this season, but finally got on track in a victory against Pittsburgh two weeks ago. Also, the Vikings have done a great job of taking the ball away, as they’re tied for third in NFL with 12 takeaways this season.

All of this leads me to the belief that the key is not going out and finding new players to replace current players. Rather, the key is to A) get healthy, which the bye week should have helped accomplish, and B) execute better as a group.

Just wondering who the emergency quarterback is since McLeod Bethel-Thompson is inactive most weeks. What would happen if Ponder and Cassel were injured in the same game?
-- YC Lindsay
Colorado

If Bethel-Thompson is inactive and both Cassel and Ponder are injured and unavailable during a game, a logical choice to be the emergency quarterback would be Joe Webb, who has been active every game this season and of course played quarterback up until this season. Last week in London, though, Bethel-Thompson was active with Ponder inactive, so had Cassel become unavailable Bethel-Thompson would’ve come in to play.

Vikings

If you had to pick a position that you think we have the most depth at, what would it be? And least depth? I know we could use a dominant strong safety (opposite Harrison Smith), but sometimes a by-committee approach will compensate just fine. I see Tampa Bay released Ahmad Black. Would he help? Or is strong safety a position of depth?
-- Tyler L.

When you have the best player at his position in the NFL, it’s hard to say that’s not a deep position on your roster. So with Adrian Peterson at running back and then Toby Gerhart backing him up, I think running back is a deep position on the roster. But it might not be the deepest. I would submit two other positions as candidates for deepest position on the roster. The first would be defensive end, with Jared Allen, Everson Griffen and Brian Robison forming a talented trio. The second would be tight end, where Kyle Rudolph is the headliner but John Carlson and Rhett Ellison provide great depth and both contribute in their own unique way.

As for the position with the least depth, heading into the bye it was the secondary because two starters – Chris Cook and Jamarca Sanford – were injured and backup AJ Jefferson was also banged up. Hopefully, though, the bye week allowed those players to rest and recuperate so they can come back this week and be ready to prepare for Carolina.

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