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Posted By Sean Eckhardt On Aug 21 2011 @ 12:20 pm In Minnesota Vikings | No Comments

In what was the first real opportunity to evaluate the 2011 Vikings, they looked pretty good.  Donovan McNabb was very sharp in limited action.  The Minnesota offense, with McNabb at the helm, started a drive inside the shadow of their own goal post and drove it almost the length of the field before settling for a field goal.  It was an impressive drive, but there was something lacking.  The big play.

As I watched the Viking offense move the ball during the game, I kept waiting for a big play.  It never happened.  There was a big play from Minnesota’s defense, when Marcus Sherels grabbed a ball that Seahawks receiver Golden Tate missed and returned it 64 yards for a touchdown.  The offense though, never had a play like that.  They would gain just enough for a first down.  That’s ok, but when the regular season is upon us, and the Vikings have to face teams that are much better than Seattle, they will have to have the threat of a big play, or teams will just start bunching the defense to eliminate the dink and dunk style of offense.  Percy Harvin didn’t play, but he’s not really a #1 receiver.  Obviously, Minnesota doesn’t have Sidney Rice or Randy Moss on their roster, so they will need a new face to emerge.

The Vikings D looked much better than they did against Tennessee last week.  While they only recorded one sack, they put pressure on Seattle’s QB’s throughout the game.  The Seahawks were only able to mount one real drive, but Minnesota’s goal line defense proved too tough.  In the NFC North, a division that features both teams that were in the NFC Championship game last year, the Viking’s D will probably be the most important factor in the team’s success.

The game in Seattle certainly looked like positive progress for this team.  The next couple of weeks will see plenty of cuts and maybe some last minute additions.  Usually, game 3 of the preseason is the closest to a regular season game, at least in terms of minutes played by starters.  Dallas will visit Minnesota this Saturday night.  The Cowboys have a lot to prove this year too, so this should be about as good as a preseason game

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