Bucs at Vikings Pre-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
VikingLord
Hall of Famer
Posts: 8334
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 3:12 pm
Location: The Land of the Ice and Snow
x 998

Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by VikingLord »

Here we are at the start of a new season with the Vikings' first opponent being the Bucs in Minnesota. I've read the power rankings and various takes on the Vikings over the offseason and know a little about the Bucs heading into the 2023 season and thought I'd post a few observations on the upcoming game along with my prediction (since predictions, while relatively useless, are still a lot of fun).

- I'll start with a general observation on both teams. The Vikings return largely the same strength (offense) that drove their success last year, while the Bucs return largely the same strength (defense) that drove their results last year. The Bucs were a solid defensive team last year, finishing top 10 in a few areas and solid top half overall. Their defense matches up very well against the relative weaknesses of the Vikings offense as well. They have interior DL size, aggressive LBs who can create pressure and disruption against both the run and pass, and solid CBs that can make a QB pay for errant throws. If the Vikings continue to have interior OL issues, issues protecting the QB, or issues getting separation downfield, the Bucs are a defense that will expose those problems. On the flip side, if the Vikings offense moves the ball consistently, that will bode very well for offense for the rest of the season IMHO.

- On the topic of the Vikings offense, I'll be watching the run game closely. Last year the Vikings really struggled to generate consistent gains on the ground (they ranked near the bottom in rushing yards/game and I believe their average yards/rush was also pretty low). Cook did have some highlight reel runs, but unfortunately those proved more the exception than the rule, and the lack of consistent production on the ground put the offense into more unfavorable 2nd and 3rd down situations than a top-performing offense ideally sees throughout a season. While the run game is no longer the focus of the offense as it was under Zimmer, the Vikings will need to demonstrate they can take advantage if a defense stacks to stop the pass or is overly aggressive in the pass rush. When the Vikings choose to run, can they pick up the 4+ yards per carry (ideally 4.5+) that gives them confidence they can run it effectively? Here's hoping Mattison and the other backs along with the offensive line can do a better job than the backups at those position did during the preseason in the run game.

- Also on the topic of the Vikings offense, the team appears loaded at WR and TE and Cousins should be able to find open receivers both in this upcoming game and all year if he has time. This is probably the deepest pool of receivers among the TEs and WRs I can remember the Vikings having in a long time.

- Biggest question in this game for both sides, and the question I think will decide the outcome, is the matchup of the Buc offense against the Vikings defense. Both have some big question marks heading into the season and both have a lot to prove. Can Baker Mayfield effectively lead the Buc offense? He's had a spotty career thus far. He's certainly capable of playing at a high level on any given Sunday, but he's also capable of making some truly poor decisions. Sometimes he does both in the same game. I think he will be a huge factor on Sunday. Another big question mark is the Vikings defense. Can the Vikings shut down what appears to be an anemic Buc run game? The Vikings defense struggled all year with consistently defending the run, especially on outside runs. With Tomlinson gone, does that issue expand to include interior runs, or can the Vikings get that under control? If they struggle against the Bucs, that bodes ill for the rest of the season and teams that have better rushing games IMHO. Likewise, can the Vikings revamped secondary defend a Buc passing game that while not amazing certainly has some punch. Lastly, can the Vikings defense simply find more ways to get off the field more consistently? The defense wasn't great at that last year, at least not for full games, and were terrible at it in certain situations where a stop would have done wonders to avert so many single score games and the need for comebacks to win.

I suspect this game will be pretty close. I think the Buc defense will keep the Vikings offense largely in check. Not off the board necessarily, but will limit scoring. On the flip side, I think Mayfield is going to really struggle against the looks Flores is going to throw at him, and the Vikings have enough speed in the LB corps that Mayfield will be pressured consistently. Couple that pressure with good run defense and I think the Bucs will also struggle to score.

I think the game ends up tied late in the 4th, and as much as I don't want to envision yet another one score game, I think the winner will be a late Vikings field goal.

Final score will be 17-14 with the Vikings coming out on top.
J. Kapp 11
Hall of Famer
Posts: 9783
Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 12:57 pm
x 1869

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by J. Kapp 11 »

Tampa’s offensive line is all new. All five. Yes, Tristan Wirfs is still there, but he’s switched from right tackle to left tackle. It’s a recipe for Flores’ defense to cause chaos and wreck havoc. He’ll put 7 or 8 defenders on the LOS, and the O-line has to figure out which ones are coming. Add to that Baker Mayfield’s penchant for making bad decisions, and I see the Vikings defense making some big plays.

I’m not as pessimistic about the Vikings’ offense. I’ll be shocked if they don’t put up 28+. They may start slowly because none of them played in the preseason, but I see them getting it rolling.

Vikings 28-6.
Image
Go ahead. I dare you.
Underestimate this man.
User avatar
Maelstrom88
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1850
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2016 4:38 am
x 411

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by Maelstrom88 »

The Bucs starting LG hurt his back in practice today. With him and Jensen out it might be a struggle for them vs. Flores. On the other hand I don't see Bradbury blocking Vita Vea. We will see how it plays out
mael·strom

a powerful whirlpool in the sea or a river.

a situation or state of confused movement or violent turmoil.
User avatar
Texas Vike
Hall of Fame Inductee
Posts: 4673
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2012 9:52 am
x 405

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by Texas Vike »

Solid analysis, VL, I enjoyed reading your write up. Nevertheless, I agree with Kapp. I think the Vikings O comes out crisp. I trust the KOC will have his guys firing fast from the start. I am concerned with IOL and the Bucs pressure in the middle. I hope KOC has a plan to roll Kirk out or other methods to deal with that potential issue.

I am really looking forward to seeing BFlo's D. Can't wait for the season to start!

My prediction? 28-20, Vikings.
User avatar
VikingsVictorious
Hall of Fame Inductee
Posts: 4214
Joined: Sat May 04, 2019 7:27 pm
x 754

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by VikingsVictorious »

My predictions
Vikings 31 Bucs 17
Cousins 330 yards three TDs
Addison 65 yards 1 TD
JJ 118 Yards 1 TD
Hock 76 yards on 7 receptions 1TD
Mattison 74 yards on 18 carries 1 TD
Joseph no misses
Hunter 1 Sack
Vikings 3 sacks 2Int. 310 yards allowed.
CharVike
Hall of Fame Candidate
Posts: 3631
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2019 5:28 pm
x 756

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by CharVike »

I see it as 24-10 us. The Bucs OL is banged up. The only injury for us is Davenport so someone else will need to be plugged in. That Vita Vea DT for the Bucs could cause some problems against our IOL. Same thing every team will attempt to do and this guy is close to Lawrence in playing ability. Mayfield? No team keeps him around so somethings wrong. Bucs are basically a .500 team.
allday1991
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1301
Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:31 pm
x 88

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by allday1991 »

Davenport already out, I’m shocked.
“I remember my mistakes more than my success.” - Adrian Peterson
makila
Pro Bowl Elite Player
Posts: 501
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2019 8:43 pm
x 173

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by makila »

allday1991 wrote: Sun Sep 10, 2023 10:46 am Davenport already out, I’m shocked.
I didn't even hear about him having an issue. Guess it popped up Friday's injury report.

Image
Image
J. Kapp 11
Hall of Famer
Posts: 9783
Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 12:57 pm
x 1869

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by J. Kapp 11 »

Left the stadium about 30 minutes ago. What a sh!tshow. They moved the ball at will in the first half but shot themselves in the foot with turnovers. In the second, the defense couldn’t get off the field. Death by a thousand paper cuts. It was painful to watch.

I was pretty optimistic coming into this game. Now … hide the revolver.
Image
Go ahead. I dare you.
Underestimate this man.
allday1991
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1301
Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:31 pm
x 88

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by allday1991 »

J. Kapp 11 wrote: Sun Sep 10, 2023 3:35 pm Left the stadium about 30 minutes ago. What a sh!tshow. They moved the ball at will in the first half but shot themselves in the foot with turnovers. In the second, the defense couldn’t get off the field. Death by a thousand paper cuts. It was painful to watch.

I was pretty optimistic coming into this game. Now … hide the revolver.
That sums it up real quick. We needed that win with this schedule. This team can never stop shooting themselves in the foot.
“I remember my mistakes more than my success.” - Adrian Peterson
JJBreaksRecords
Pro Bowl Elite Player
Posts: 523
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2022 10:22 pm
x 73

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by JJBreaksRecords »

I told everyone last year was a fraud, and todays shows I was once again right. Everyone but JJ sucked, and the TEs.
allday1991
All Pro Elite Player
Posts: 1301
Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:31 pm
x 88

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by allday1991 »

JJBreaksRecords wrote: Sun Sep 10, 2023 3:43 pm I told everyone last year was a fraud, and todays shows I was once again right. Everyone but JJ sucked, and the TEs.
Kirk was fine. Ingram hand gets in way instead of foot and KJ lets go of a ball he caught. Easy win without those.
“I remember my mistakes more than my success.” - Adrian Peterson
User avatar
Cliff
Site Admin
Posts: 9553
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2004 5:51 pm
Location: Kentucky
x 470

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by Cliff »

Last year we stole games we should have lost, this year we hand away games we should have won. Those turnovers were definitely the difference.
JJBreaksRecords
Pro Bowl Elite Player
Posts: 523
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2022 10:22 pm
x 73

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by JJBreaksRecords »

allday1991 wrote: Sun Sep 10, 2023 3:45 pm
JJBreaksRecords wrote: Sun Sep 10, 2023 3:43 pm I told everyone last year was a fraud, and todays shows I was once again right. Everyone but JJ sucked, and the TEs.
Kirk was fine. Ingram hand gets in way instead of foot and KJ lets go of a ball he caught. Easy win without those.
LOL
CharVike
Hall of Fame Candidate
Posts: 3631
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2019 5:28 pm
x 756

Re: Bucs at Vikings Pre-Game

Post by CharVike »

JJBreaksRecords wrote: Sun Sep 10, 2023 3:43 pm I told everyone last year was a fraud, and todays shows I was once again right. Everyone but JJ sucked, and the TEs.
Maybe today was a fraud also unless you feel we won't win a game this year.