I don't know about that.StpViking wrote: ↑Thu Jan 09, 2020 12:25 pmMy entire attention will be focus on the Vikings OL. This is probably the worst match possible for them as a unit. The coaches better have a good game plan. If it's just let them play and giving the Ole You Can Do It speech, even if the the Vikings are given +30 points, I would still take the Niners.
Do the 49ers have a good defensive line? Yes. They are athletic and aggressive.
Do they have a weakness? Also yes. They are not large, especially in the middle.
So the real question for me in this matchup is can the Vikings expose the weakness while minimizing the strength? Doing that requires two things - first and foremost, they have to get and stay ahead or at worst even in the score so that they can credibly threaten play action, and second, they have to be able to run it, especially between the tackles and especially early on. Both things are necessary to compromise the 49er defensive front.
If the Vikings end up in a lot of 3rd-and-6 or longers and obvious passing situations, that maximizes every strength the 49ers have on defense. Their pass rushers can pin back their ears and come hard after Cousins while their pass defense can clamp down on the short and medium routes and make Cousins beat them.
Left unsaid in this is the role the defense has to play in not letting the score get out of hand, especially early. It won't surprise me at all if the Vikings struggle on offense for a bit. The 49ers have had 2 weeks of rest and are healthy. They will be jacked up and their fans will be loud. If the offense has a few early drives that aren't successful, the defense simply cannot allow the 49er offense to have early success either. If the Vikings can weather that likely early storm on both sides of the ball, I really like their chances for the game. If they get down by 10+ early, that tilts the field heavily in the favor of the 49ers.
Basic point is, the 49ers defense has a notable strength and a notable weakness, and Zimmer and the Vikings must expose that weakness and minimize that strength. Do that, especially early, and they likely win the game provided they avoid costly turnovers and penalties.