Thanks. I try.halfgiz wrote: Very well thought out post!
Gotta take exception here. What you're saying just isn't backed by the record.halfgiz wrote:A big decision needs to be made about Shurmur because the draft will be focused on bringing in players to fit his scheme. I have no faith in RS to find the right players, but I'm not convinced that Shurmur's system is nothing more than a vanilla version of the WCO. I was looking for signs that his offense was developing, I saw a stubbornness of trying to run the ball on first and second downs setting up third and longs, only to have Bradford throw short of the sticks and expect his receivers to run 7 yards to a first down. Some of Shurmur biggest problems were failures on third down, lack of aggressiveness and red zone struggles. The Vikings were predictable and easy to defend. Will it be enough with this coaching staff's offensive schemes to make that next step?
Against Green Bay, the Vikings passed on 16 of the first 22 plays. Bradford had completions of 20, 11, 17, 32, 21, and 71 yards among those 16 pass plays. Only one of those was thrown short. On their second drive, the Vikings had four consecutive pass plays that all resulted in first downs. Keep in mind, I'm not citing plays in the fourth quarter, when the game was out of reach. This was the first half. For the game, the Vikings had 446 total yards. Yes, we got waxed, but the offense was not the problem.
Against the Bears, the Vikings moved the ball almost at will, especially in the first half. The pass-run ratio wasn't as high, but it didn't have to be. The Vikings actually rushed for more than 120 yards. And against Jacksonville, Bradford had four completions of 40+ yards.
The Indy game was just an abomination from the beginning. The team wasn't ready to play, and with Peterson's return, they were trying to force feed him the ball early (which makes you correct for the early part of that game -- and is the main reason I don't want them to keep AP).
I've been saying it for more than a month now ... over the final four weeks, the dink-and-dunk stuff evolved to more downfield attempts, and the Vikings had plenty of success. Sam Bradford averaged 305 yards per game over the last four, and he averaged 7.64 YPA, which any of us would take for a season. Adam Thielen had games of 86, 101, and 202 yards. Kyle Rudolph had two big games. The passing offense may not have reminded anyone of 1998, but it was definitely trending in the right direction. The numbers don't lie.
But I do thank you for giving me an excuse to study this ... my instincts told me the Vikings passed downfield with more success in the last quarter of the season, and the numbers bear it out.