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Keenum: I Think Everybody in This Locker Room is Hungry

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. –Case Keenum didn't get enough to eat in the end zone last week at Detroit.

The quarterback joined at the imaginary Thanksgiving Day table after scrambling for his first rushing touchdown with the Vikings en route to a 30-23 defeat of the Lions. The victory widened the gap between Minnesota (9-2) and Detroit (6-5) in the NFC North, giving the Vikings a three-game lead in the division.

But if you ask Keenum, it isn't enough.

"We've yet to accomplish everything we want to accomplish, and we've got a lot of work ahead of us, but we're hungry for it," Keenum told Twin Cities media members on Wednesday. "I think everybody in this locker room is hungry.

"You've got a team that works," Keenum said. "I think everybody in this locker room wants the same thing, and we all want it really bad. We go to work each week like it's a new week, like it's the only week, and we put everything we've got into that week. We know that the past doesn't matter, the future doesn't matter; the only thing we can control is this week."

Next up for the Vikings is Atlanta, where they will take on last year's NFC Champions.

Keenum said the Vikings "have got our work cut out for us" against a talented Falcons defense. The Falcons are led by Head Coach Dan Quinn, who was the Seahawks defensive coordinator from 2013-14 prior to his hire in Atlanta.

"They're a great football team, first of all. But their defense specifically, I've been watching them up front, they've got some great players up there, some great pass rushers that I've played a few times. Some great linebackers. And then I think the back end is really strong," Keenum said. "They've got a really good scheme, they're really smart about how they line up and how they play their scheme."

Keenum also emphasized Atlanta's depth on defense and ability to move guys around to different spots if needed "without missing a beat."

When asked about comparisons between the Falcons defense and the Seahawks, Keenum said there are a lot of similarities that pop up on film.

"But they've got their own flavor and a lot of different personnel, obviously," Keenum said. "So it's been fun to study."

The Vikings are now 4-1 on the road. Heading into the second of a three-game road stretch, Keenum credited the team's preparation during the week with the Vikings feeling confident whether they're the home team or the visitors.

"It's communicating during the week so that during the game we know what to expect, we know what's coming and can communicate in other ways if we can't hear," said Keenum, who later said that quarterbacks coach Kevin Stefanski been extremely influential in his personal preparation process.

"Kevin's been great. I've thoroughly enjoyed working with him as the quarterbacks coach," Keenum said. "Prepares us as thoroughly as I've ever been prepared, as far as seeing different looks and being prepared for all sorts of things."

Keenum is now 7-2 as a starter in Purple, and he wants to keep things rolling.

He emphasized that his approach hasn't changed from the beginning of the season until now – he just wants to improve every day.

"I'm always trying to get better. I had a coach tell me that if you're not getting better, you're getting worse," Keenum said. "So I try to get better every day. I think today I'm better than I was yesterday, I think I'm better yesterday than I was before, and that's my goal. Each day I come in, I want to be better. If you get a little bit better each day, you put a lot of those days together, and you've gotten a lot better."

The same goes for Keenum's teammates.

From Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer on down, Keenum said the locker room has adopted a week-to-week mentality and that they aren't letting themselves lose focus after a string of seven wins.

"We trust our process," Keenum said. "And our process is coming in on Mondays, reviewing the film, looking at what we did well, looking at what we didn't do well and getting better. No matter what the outcome may have been, no matter what the past, we're letting all that go because everything we want is right in front of us."

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