Cowboys @ Vikings post game

A forum for the hard core Minnesota Vikings fan. Discuss upcoming games, opponents, trades, draft or what ever is on the minds of Viking fans!

Moderator: Moderators

User avatar
Mothman
Defensive Tackle
Posts: 38261
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2003 11:48 am
Location: Chicago, IL
x 382

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by Mothman » Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:01 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 6:53 am
Stats are literally the "objective reality" and you are making a subjective argument.
Stats are a way to parse objective reality but they never present a complete picture.
For instance your feelings tell you the defense is allowing opponents an advantage in TOP, but objectively the defense is 7th in shortest TOP per drive, and the offense has held the ball the 25th longest on each of their drives.
It has nothing to do with my feelings. Cleveland had an almost 10 minute advantage in TOP against the Vikings and ran the ball down their throats. Dallas ended up with about a five minute TOP advantage.
D is doing their job to get the offense the ball back.
The D's job is far more than that and they aren't doing it. As others have pointed out, they've blown late leads in multiple games (shades of 2013). Their "job" is not allow a first-time starter to throw for 300 yards or to allow the Browns to come into Minnesota and rush for 180+. It's not to allow the Bengals to rush for 149 yards or the Cardinals to put up 500 yards of offense and 34 points. It's not to allow the Panthers to drive from their own 4 yard line for a TD and 2-point conversion in the final 2 minutes of regulation.
The defense isn't elite and going into the season you can find posts of mine where I point out the talent it isn't as good as the 2018 defense, let alone the 2017 one that got us to the NFCCG. It is however good enough to win easily with a competent offense and it is not even close to being the problem. Not being able to put up more than 16 points against a very average D was THE problem Sunday.
I agree that it was a problem but so was focusing so much on slowing down the Cowboy's running game that the Vikings allowed Dallas receivers big cushions all night and gave up over 300 yards passing to Cooper Rush!
If nothing on D changed, and the offense was even average, we would probably be 6-1, maybe even 7-0 and we would be talking about the huge turnaround the D made after last year. These "collapses" at the end of games would instead be garbage time drives that have no impact on the final result. The offense is changing the perception of what up until this point has been a pretty good defense.
:lol: I see, allowing the game-winning TD drive at the end of the game Sunday wasn't a defensive failure. It was really the offense's fault, for not scoring enough points to allow the defense to "collapse" without consequence.That was certainly how the Vikes lost their first 2 games of the season, right?

I've seen fan after fan engage in this same deflection of responsibility for Zimmer's defenses for over 7 years now. It's never their fault, they're always supposedly playing at a winning level and it's the offense that's at fault. The truth is, the team has been problematic for this coach's entire run: always too vulnerable to good running games, always good enough to be ranked statistically high on defense but a paper tiger in big games, usually in flux and wildly inconsistent (or just plain bad) on offense.
2 x

CharVike
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1943
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2019 5:28 pm
x 339

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by CharVike » Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:02 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 6:53 am
Mothman wrote:
Mon Nov 01, 2021 8:51 pm


You’re making a stat-based argument that all but ignores objective reality. A defense that repeatedly breaks down, collapses in big moments, allows opponents to create substantial advantages in TOP, etc. is not a good defense. The “real issue” with this Vikings team is that it simply isn’t very good on either side of the ball. The coaching is mediocre, the personnel often misused, the vaunted defense a letdown.
Stats are literally the "objective reality" and you are making a subjective argument. For instance your feelings tell you the defense is allowing opponents an advantage in TOP, but objectively the defense is 7th in shortest TOP per drive, and the offense has held the ball the 25th longest on each of their drives. D is doing their job to get the offense the ball back. Offense is not doing their job to keep the D off the field. That is a cold hard fact.

The defense isn't elite and going into the season you can find posts of mine where I point out the talent it isn't as good as the 2018 defense, let alone the 2017 one that got us to the NFCCG. It is however good enough to win easily with a competent offense and it is not even close to being the problem. Not being able to put up more than 16 points against a very average D was THE problem Sunday. Only being able to put up 2 TDs in the second half of 7 games is the problem on the season. Going 3 and out more than any team but Houston and Jacksonville is also a huge problem.

If nothing on D changed, and the offense was even average, we would probably be 6-1, maybe even 7-0 and we would be talking about the huge turnaround the D made after last year. These "collapses" at the end of games would instead be garbage time drives that have no impact on the final result. The offense is changing the perception of what up until this point has been a pretty good defense.
The Bengal game wasn't a stellar performance. Burrow only had 261 yards but he only put it up 27 times. That's almost 10 yards an attempt. Mixon got 127 yards rushing. Mixon? Our O lost us the game this Sunday. Zim talked about the 3rd down conversions and said the Boys made some changes. Where the hell was our counter move? We didn't have one. Zim has lost control of this team. I actually feel sorry for the guy. He don't trust any of his coaches or players. He's a control freak who is surrounded by a bunch of flunkies or never was guys. That puts him on top by default. A HC job is hard enough but he has made it almost impossible. Can't even manage timeouts at this point. Throws them away for nothing. That's as bad as it gets. He's needs to get out of the way for a game or two and see what happens. On O we start off great with the script. Maybe he should script out a hundred plays. It can't hurt at this point.
0 x

psjordan
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1735
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2003 8:01 am
x 103

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by psjordan » Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:14 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 6:53 am
These "collapses" at the end of games would instead be garbage time drives that have no impact on the final result.
The fact remains that when several of our “less than top offense” opponents NEEDED a drive (or 2 pts) to win or tie a game, they got it. They drove on our supposedly statistically good/great defense and scored points when they needed them. Was our defense not trying to stop them?

To simply deny that those drives would not happen more frequently under any circumstances if our offense only put up more points is not that sound of an argument. We’ve already shown with the game on the line our D struggles. Do you feel other teams would run the exact same plays in the 2nd half if we were tied or up by 17 in those games?

This is the problem with trying to “pinpoint” issues that lead to losses. When one variable changes, six other variables also change.

Can’t cherry pick variables and hold everything else constant.
1 x

psjordan
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1735
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2003 8:01 am
x 103

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by psjordan » Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:22 am

OK. Trying not to “knee jerk” into the underside of my desk here, so I’ll try and take a 30,000 ft view.

Zim is a .575? ish winning coach regular season, and .333 in the playoffs.

Those are the only required stats for all readers. Clearly he should go if the goal is to make (and be successful in) the playoffs.

This DAL loss is nothing different than we’ve seen out of Zimmer’s teams. A loss after a bye when fortunes seemed in our favor.

Our wins this year are also nothing different from what we’ve seen over the past 8 or so years. Although maybe a little more chaotic.

But … but … our four losses this year are by 7 points or less you say. Amari Cooper’s long catch late was once-every-five-seasons lucky you say. Yes, THESE THINGS will save Zimmer’s job, at least until the regular season is over.

It’s the things like the stumbling bumbling Cousins-to-Theilen completion down around the five late in game (forcing a FG instead of possible TD) that likely cost us a win that should haunt the heck out of this coaching staff.

Anyways, you can’t cherry pick variables and hold everything else constant.

When you start contemplating firing people you suddenly realize there are a LOT of moving parts for an NFL team. What I think gets lost in the current chaos, and I am sure it is what the Wilf’s are trying to figure out - what other variables change when/if you fire Zim and staff?

Would Rick have to go same day? Would his job even be on the table? Would he go first?
Would Rick’s Roster work better with another staff?
Would our OL group get better with new/better coaching?
Would a different offensive philosophy work better with Cousins’ talents?
Would our veteran D players from last year play “better” without the HC lumping them in with the “worst defense he's ever had”?
Would our players stay healthier with a new strength/conditioning/medical staff?

The list goes on and on. And as an owner, you have to answer those best you can before you decide if the entire front office, GM and starting QB also need to be jettisoned.

IMO Zim is completely tone deaf at this point, and there is simply no way possible that he’s a major hit in the locker room with his approach.

The DAL game was embarrassing on many levels, and if the Wilfs can’t see it I sure hope they have a good friend who will point out the piece of broccoli stuck in their teeth.
2 x

User avatar
TSonn
Career Elite Player
Posts: 2098
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2014 11:52 am
Location: Michigan
x 118

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by TSonn » Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:30 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 6:53 am
Mothman wrote:
Mon Nov 01, 2021 8:51 pm


You’re making a stat-based argument that all but ignores objective reality. A defense that repeatedly breaks down, collapses in big moments, allows opponents to create substantial advantages in TOP, etc. is not a good defense. The “real issue” with this Vikings team is that it simply isn’t very good on either side of the ball. The coaching is mediocre, the personnel often misused, the vaunted defense a letdown.
Stats are literally the "objective reality" and you are making a subjective argument. For instance your feelings tell you the defense is allowing opponents an advantage in TOP, but objectively the defense is 7th in shortest TOP per drive, and the offense has held the ball the 25th longest on each of their drives. D is doing their job to get the offense the ball back. Offense is not doing their job to keep the D off the field. That is a cold hard fact.
Is this in comparison to all 32 teams? Seems like a more objective reality would be to look at the TOP in each of the games we played, not in comparison to every team in the league. What does it matter if our defense is ranked higher than, say, the Raiders in TOP per drive when we haven't played any of the same teams?
0 x

StumpHunter
Career Elite Player
Posts: 2946
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2018 5:55 am
x 441

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by StumpHunter » Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:08 am

Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:01 am

It has nothing to do with my feelings. Cleveland had an almost 10 minute advantage in TOP against the Vikings and ran the ball down their throats. Dallas ended up with about a five minute TOP advantage.
It absolutely has to do with your feelings. You are blaming the D in those two games for a TOP deficit when it was the offense going three and out and failing to sustain drives that was the problem. TOP on average per drive of the defense before the Cleveland game : 2.4. After: 2.48. That is a 3% difference. TOP on offense before the Cleveland game: 3.05 After: 2.52. An 17% difference. The Vikings on defense were very good in the TOP before the Cleveland game, and nothing really changed after. Offensively they just sucked in that game, which is why TOP was skewed. It is the same with the Dallas game. That is an indisputable fact unless you choose to ignore that TOP is just as much an offensive stat as a defensive one.
Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:01 am
I've seen fan after fan engage in this same deflection of responsibility for Zimmer's defenses for over 7 years now. It's never their fault, they're always supposedly playing at a winning level and it's the offense that's at fault. The truth is, the team has been problematic for this coach's entire run: always too vulnerable to good running games, always good enough to be ranked statistically high on defense but a paper tiger in big games, usually in flux and wildly inconsistent (or just plain bad) on offense.
Deflection like pointing out he has given up the 5th fewest points since he became head coach?

I am open to hearing about how Zimmer's D is vulnerable to good running teams and is a "paper tiger in big games", but cherry picking games from what is already a subjective category like "big games" isn't doing it for me. Let's see the average points given up against top 10 offenses over Zimmer's career and top 10 run defenses compared to what other Carrol, Bellicheck and other great coaches have done. He absolutely could look terrible compared to those guys like you believe, but lets prove it with facts and not opinions.
0 x

User avatar
chicagopurple
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1418
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:45 am
x 63

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by chicagopurple » Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:16 am

This is the typical experience of Vike fans, spending our season arguing about all the factors that makes them suck. Its a pointless argument. Pretty sad. The simple truth is that Nothing on the Vikes is top tier, no part of their team is of sufficient talent to drive us to a Championship, not the GM, not the Coaches, not the Offense nor the Defense. There was a period where our D was one of the best but they have done nothing but get older. We have not added any ProBowlers to our D in a long time. Our Coach was supposed to be a Defensive Genius...that has NOT been proven to be true. Everything on this team needs major upgrades if we are to have a chance of a meaningful season....except our stadium, that IS world class....but the team that plays in it is NOT.
3 x

User avatar
Lash Man
Hall of Fame Candidate
Posts: 3486
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2009 5:11 pm
Location: Middle Earth
x 4

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by Lash Man » Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:02 am

chicagopurple wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:16 am
This is the typical experience of Vike fans, spending our season arguing about all the factors that makes them suck. Its a pointless argument. Pretty sad. The simple truth is that Nothing on the Vikes is top tier, no part of their team is of sufficient talent to drive us to a Championship, not the GM, not the Coaches, not the Offense nor the Defense. There was a period where our D was one of the best but they have done nothing but get older. We have not added any ProBowlers to our D in a long time. Our Coach was supposed to be a Defensive Genius...that has NOT been proven to be true. Everything on this team needs major upgrades if we are to have a chance of a meaningful season....except our stadium, that IS world class....but the team that plays in it is NOT.
Exactly ! This is TRUTH
0 x
LETS GO VIKINGS ! :rock:

User avatar
Lash Man
Hall of Fame Candidate
Posts: 3486
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2009 5:11 pm
Location: Middle Earth
x 4

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by Lash Man » Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:03 am

chicagopurple wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:16 am
This is the typical experience of Vike fans, spending our season arguing about all the factors that makes them suck. Its a pointless argument. Pretty sad. The simple truth is that Nothing on the Vikes is top tier, no part of their team is of sufficient talent to drive us to a Championship, not the GM, not the Coaches, not the Offense nor the Defense. There was a period where our D was one of the best but they have done nothing but get older. We have not added any ProBowlers to our D in a long time. Our Coach was supposed to be a Defensive Genius...that has NOT been proven to be true. Everything on this team needs major upgrades if we are to have a chance of a meaningful season....except our stadium, that IS world class....but the team that plays in it is NOT.
Exactly ! This is TRUTH
0 x
LETS GO VIKINGS ! :rock:

User avatar
makila
Starter
Posts: 100
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2019 8:43 pm
x 35

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by makila » Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:17 am

I think most every fan has realized Zimmer isn't working here at this point. He has peaked and now is trending down. I think there is less consensus on Rick.
psjordan wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 8:22 am
Would Rick have to go same day? Would his job even be on the table? Would he go first?
Would Rick’s Roster work better with another staff?
Would our OL group get better with new/better coaching?
Would a different offensive philosophy work better with Cousins’ talents?
Would our veteran D players from last year play “better” without the HC lumping them in with the “worst defense he's ever had”?
Would our players stay healthier with a new strength/conditioning/medical staff?
Good post. Only quoted this part..I do wonder if people who think Rick should stay think he has built a roster that compliments itself?
Last edited by makila on Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
0 x

User avatar
Mothman
Defensive Tackle
Posts: 38261
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2003 11:48 am
Location: Chicago, IL
x 382

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by Mothman » Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:21 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 9:08 am
It absolutely has to do with your feelings. You are blaming the D in those two games for a TOP deficit when it was the offense going three and out and failing to sustain drives that was the problem.
No, I simply understand that they share responsibility and I'm not absolving the defense. The defense didn't allow 180+ yards rushing because the offense was going 3 and out. Both units contribute to TOP. If the defense was also forcing three-and-outs, that stat would likely be quite different.
TOP on average per drive of the defense before the Cleveland game : 2.4. After: 2.48. That is a 3% difference. TOP on offense before the Cleveland game: 3.05 After: 2.52. An 17% difference. The Vikings on defense were very good in the TOP before the Cleveland game, and nothing really changed after. Offensively they just sucked in that game, which is why TOP was skewed. It is the same with the Dallas game. That is an indisputable fact unless you choose to ignore that TOP is just as much an offensive stat as a defensive one.
You're parsing stats again. Season stat totals don't present a complete picture of game-day issues and those issues can vary week-to-week. I don't want to just focus on single stat like Time of Possession. Your contention is the defense is doing it's job and the team is losing because of the offense. I'm saying they're losing as a team and I'm not saying they lose the same way every week. The offense scored plenty of points against AZ, for example but the defense gave up far too many yards and points. They were run over by Cleveland, unable to get off the field and give the struggling offense more opportunities. That's on the defense, not the offense and just as an offense struggling to stay on the field can lead to a tired defense, a defense that struggles to get off the field can lead to stagnation and issues on offense. It's not a one way street and the Vikings aren't a team with a singular problem. They have issues on both sides of the ball.
Deflection like pointing out he has given up the 5th fewest points since he became head coach?
Who cares when the defense collapses at key moments and in important games? How did that stat help them when the Eagles and 49ers blew them out in the playoffs? How many division titles has it helped them win? How many postseason games? How many games has it helped them win this season?
Let's see the average points given up against top 10 offenses over Zimmer's career and top 10 run defenses compared to what other Carrol, Bellicheck and other great coaches have done. He absolutely could look terrible compared to those guys like you believe, but lets prove it with facts and not opinions.
Who cares about those averages? I don't and I didn't say I believe Zimmer would look terrible in such a comparison. Please don't put words in my mouth.

Statistical rankings from season to season are interesting and indicate a certain measure of success or failure but I'm far more interested in division titles and postseason success, in a balanced Vikings team that wins consistently and addresses chronic problems. Zimmer has always been a good defensive coordinator. That's not in dispute. However, at this current moment in time in particular, his defense IS part of the reason the Vikes have a losing record in 2021 and everybody watching Sunday night's game saw them blow an opportunity to seal a much-needed win at home.
1 x

User avatar
VikingLord
Hall of Famer
Posts: 7319
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 3:12 pm
Location: The Land of the Ice and Snow
x 565

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by VikingLord » Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:53 am

The defense AND offense of this team are just not good enough. Both are consistently inconsistent, and neither scares anyone.

With the loss of Hunter's presence at defensive end, Everson Griffin is literally the best, and by most accounts, only, legit pass rushing threat on the defensive line. Now in addition to not being able to stop the run, they also won't be able to pressure the passer. Should be a real treat watching this defense against Lamar Jackson and the Ravens. TOP might swing back in the Vikings favor in this game, not because the defense is getting stops per se, but because they're giving up so many big chunk plays and quick scores.

Offensively, who knows? I'm sure they'll put up their obligatory 7 points, and then all bets are off for what we'll see for the next 53 minutes or so of the game.

One thing I don't expect to ever see from another Mike Zimmer-led team is another 2 timeouts called in a row. Twice in a single season has to be a record of some sort. If it happens yet again this season, the Wilfs need to fire Zimmer on the spot.
2 x

StumpHunter
Career Elite Player
Posts: 2946
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2018 5:55 am
x 441

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by StumpHunter » Tue Nov 02, 2021 1:46 pm

Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:21 am

No, I simply understand that they share responsibility and I'm not absolving the defense. The defense didn't allow 180+ yards rushing because the offense was going 3 and out. Both units contribute to TOP. If the defense was also forcing three-and-outs, that stat would likely be quite different.
The D is contributing in a positive way, which is a fact. Our offense has more drives per game than any other offense in the entire NFL, yet you bring it up as a negative because you perceive the poor run defense is preventing the offense from getting chances to score. That isn't the case.
Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:21 am
You're parsing stats again. Season stat totals don't present a complete picture of game-day issues and those issues can vary week-to-week.
I gave you the week-to-week when I wrote the difference between week 3 and week 4 TOP per drive...The D wasn't the problem in a game where they held Cleveland to 14 points and gave their offense plenty of chances to score.
Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:21 am
I don't want to just focus on single stat like Time of Possession.
We can move on, but it does prove the D is not the issue when it comes to time of possession like you stated in your OP.
Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:21 am
Your contention is the defense is doing it's job and the team is losing because of the offense. I'm saying they're losing as a team and I'm not saying they lose the same way every week. The offense scored plenty of points against AZ, for example but the defense gave up far too many yards and points. They were run over by Cleveland, unable to get off the field and give the struggling offense more opportunities. That's on the defense, not the offense and just as an offense struggling to stay on the field can lead to a tired defense, a defense that struggles to get off the field can lead to stagnation and issues on offense. It's not a one way street and the Vikings aren't a team with a singular problem. They have issues on both sides of the ball.
My contention is the defense has played well enough that this team could be a one loss team if the offense was even average.

My contention is that if the offense was top 10 in scoring instead of 22nd, and the D was bottom 10 instead of 8th, there wouldn't be a single person here blaming the offense for losses.

This is not an elite D, it wouldn't be with Bud Grant in his prime coaching it, but it is certainly not the problem.

Mothman wrote:
Tue Nov 02, 2021 10:21 am
Who cares about those averages? I don't and I didn't say I believe Zimmer would look terrible in such a comparison. Please don't put words in my mouth..
You say he sucks against great teams but you aren't saying that he isn't terrible in comparison to other coaches?
However, at this current moment in time in particular, his defense IS part of the reason the Vikes have a losing record in 2021 and everybody watching Sunday night's game saw them blow an opportunity to seal a much-needed win at home.
I saw a defense lose its best player and still hold a very talented offense, backup QB or no, to 13 points until the 11th drive of the game where they finally lost the lead. Good not great defense.

I saw an offense struggle against a very average defense and only put up 16 despite getting 12 chances to score more. Pathetic offense.

The offense, particularly the QB, were by far the biggest issue in this game.
0 x

User avatar
soflavike
Hall of Famer
Posts: 9574
Joined: Sun Oct 01, 2006 3:38 pm
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
x 12

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by soflavike » Tue Nov 02, 2021 2:46 pm

The Wilf's will wait until the season is almost over, or over before making a call on Zimmer. I have my doubts whether Spielman would get fired with a losing record, even with his 4th rounder deal for Herndon and all the other dumb decisions he has made.

I would deal Dalvin Cook for some good draft picks, and maybe Thielen, too. Time to look beyond this season and this choking staff... I mean coaching staff.
0 x
*********
A die-hard Vikings fan in South Florida

User avatar
Cliff
Site Admin
Posts: 9052
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2004 5:51 pm
Location: Kentucky
x 249

Re: Cowboys @ Vikings post game

Post by Cliff » Tue Nov 02, 2021 2:48 pm

There's no defense for this particular loss. They just didn't get it done. Kirk has had some issues in high pressure and prime time situations. The defense couldn't hold up when they needed to most.

In general though, the unit that is probably the most responsible for the Vikings poor record is special teams. The offense and defense have both done enough to win 3 or so of the games they lost but special teams/kicking couldn't get it done. The Vikings would be 5-3 or 6-2.

Kicking has been a consistent issue though Zimmer's tenure that has never seemed to get better.
0 x