Skip to main content

News | Minnesota Vikings –

Presented by

Fran Tarkenton: Vikings are 'Set to Make a Run'

Look back at photos through the years featuring games between the Vikings and Packers.

When Hall of Fame quarterback Fran Tarkenton saw the Vikings lose Teddy Bridgewater for the season, he said he felt discouraged for the team. However, those **feelings have now changed**.

In a column for the Pioneer Press, Tarkenton wrote the following:

The acquisition of Sam Bradford and our big win in Tennessee to start the season have reversed that negative narrative, and I think it's been great for the psyche of this team.

Shaun Hill completed 18 of 33 passes for 236 yards on Sunday. The offense didn't have a touchdown, but perhaps more important, the offense didn't have a turnover. Head Coach Mike Zimmer doesn't plan to announce the starter for Sunday until the day of the game.

Tarkenton emphasized the importance of a high-caliber defense that can pressure the opposing quarterback and said a team with an excellent defense can win no matter who's playing quarterback.

Minnesota's defense forced three turnovers and scored two touchdowns, taking control of the game in the second half.

We're set up to make a run. There are no guarantees. There were no guarantees even before Bridgewater's injury. But we have a very real chance. We look forward to opening the stadium with renewed hope.


*Zimmer's defense makes things tough for Aaron Rodgers

As the Vikings prepare to face the Packers in their home opener Sunday night, Zimmer has a 1-3 record against the border rival team in his first two seasons with Minnesota and defeated them the previous two times when he was a defensive coordinator in Cincinnati. As ESPN's Rob Demovsky pointed out yesterday, however, Zimmer has **“not made things easy” for Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers**. Demovsky wrote:

*[Few] defensive minds have limited Rodgers' production like Zimmer. In those six games against Zimmer with the Bengals and Vikings, Rodgers has a combined completion percentage that is nearly six points lower than his overall career mark and has markedly lower numbers in passing yards per game, yards per attempt, touchdowns per game and passer rating while being sacked more frequently. *

Demovsky quoted Rodgers as saying Zimmer is a trendsetter.

"There's been multiple [trendsetters] over the years in the NFL, and he's one of them," Rodgers said. "What he's done with the 'seven-up' package has changed the game. A lot of teams have tried to replicate that, but not to the same success or intricacies as Coach Zimmer has. You've got to give him credit for that."

Rodgers has 43 career 300-yard passing games in 119 regular-season starts, but none came in any of the six games against Zimmer.


The talent on defense assembled by [Vikings General Manager] Rick Spielman no doubt has played a part too. Spielman drafted safety Harrison Smith and linebacker Anthony Barr, both Pro Bowlers last season, and Zimmer has built his defense around them and a solid front.


*Stefon Diggs has a lot to offer

After the Vikings season-opener win over the Titans Sunday, 1500ESPN's Matthew Coller took a look at wide receiver Stefon Diggs' production.

Although Diggs said postgame that he didn't meet his personal standards, Coller **broke down his many positives** during the game. Coller wrote:

*There wasn't a ton of room for "better" on Sunday as Diggs ended up being one of Pro Football Focus's highest rated wide receivers for Week 1 and Minnesota's No. 1 offensive player. *

Diggs finished the game as Minnesota's leading receiver. He caught seven of nine passes for 103 yards.

Coller pointed to Diggs' abilities in route running, ball skills, versatility and yards-after-carry and embedded game film from the matchup at Tennessee to illustrate his explanations. He wrote the following about Diggs ability to be a down-field threat:

Being a deep threat in the NFL isn't just about being fast […]. Catching deep passes is also about getting turned around to find the ball and tracking it in the air. Then there's competing for the ball and bringing it in. Diggs [did] it all on a 33-yard catch late in the game.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.