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Monday Morning Mailbag: Analyzing A Successful Start To The Preseason

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The first defensive series and offensive series were pretty darn good. A three-and-out for the defense followed by a touchdown drive for the offense! Nice introductory drive by our new franchise quarterback. Hopefully this might be a small premonition of how this season will go! Skol!
-- Kyle Alexander

It was brief, but the first game action of 2018 for the Vikings defensive and offensive starters couldn't have gone much better. Most encouraging to me was the run blocking and production on the ground. We've seen the running game working well in training camp practices, and now we've seen this continue in preseason games. That is a great sign for the offense. I'm sure head coach Mike Zimmer and offensive coordinator John DeFilippo saw several things they want cleaned up, but all-in-all it was an outstanding start on offense. The defense got off the field in three plays, which is all you can ask of them.

We appear to be ahead of the curve in all facets. The third-team defense played a little soft, but what the neck, nothing that I'm concerned about at this point. Absolutely love Roc Thomas at tailback and Kyle Sloter shows tremendous poise at quarterback.
-- Nicholas Balkou

I loved what I saw and I don't want to rain on any parades, but we also have to take what we saw for what it was. It was the first preseason game and it was a very small sample size for the starters. Just as I encouraged fans not to panic when the offensive line sustained some injuries in the last two weeks, I also encourage you to not overreact to what we saw on Saturday night. The football team is in the midst of a laborious and thorough process of getting ready for the season, and Saturday night's game was one step in the process. It was a significant step because it was a preseason game, but it's part of the process. There's a long way to go!

Lots to be excited about from the first preseasons game! I feel like a really import nuance that wasn't talked about on any coverage was the fact that the Vikings overcame a holding penalty to score on their first drive! Always been curious about how many drives result in a TD after a holding penalty? I can't imagine it's a very high percentage. Would be an interesting stat to share with fans. Thanks for your time and Skol Vikings!
-- Mike Austin

I love when Vikings fans write in with great points like this. Penalties are ordinarily drive killers. The Broncos gained five yards on their first play from scrimmage on Saturday, but a false start before the 2nd down play set them back five yards and the Vikings defense was able to get off the field on 3rd down. The Vikings offense was able to overcome an even bigger penalty – a 10-yard holding infraction – and that will not go unnoticed by Zimmer and his offensive staff. First off, Zimmer will use it as a teaching opportunity to try to reduce those penalties. Secondly, Zimmer will give the offense credit for being able to overcome the setback.

With Nick Easton now being out for the year, do you see Danny Isidora stepping up and filling in that roll or do you see that being taken by Tom Compton?
-- Tory Hansen

Compton and Isidora are both candidates for that role, but I won't be surprised if Aviante Collins gets a look, as well. He seemed to give a good accounting of himself playing inside against the Broncos. Others should have a shot, too, including Josh Andrews, draft pick Colby Gossett and perhaps even Cornelius Edison once Pat Elflein returns to action.