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Krauser last won the day on April 30 2018

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  1. I appreciate the apology. Let’s leave it at that.
  2. My worry about the defense in this game is the tackling, more than the coverage or the pass rush. The Vikings CBs didn't make any plays vs GB but a lot of the throws were pinpoint perfect. Rivers will hit a couple of those, but he's usually pretty inaccurate especially deeper downfield, and he puts the ball in harm's way. The safeties and LBs should have chances to come up with an INT or two even if the corners are still struggling. I'm sure the pass rush won't be good but Ngakoue has had some success previously against Costanzo, so hopefully he gets home once or twice. Rivers is much less likely to take great advantage of time in the pocket than Rodgers did last week -- he's not going to roll out and improvise. The Colts will throw a lot of short passes from spread and work the ball underneath to the RBs. They're also going to run behind that big OL. The Vikings second level tackling was uncharacteristically terrible last week. The young corners are less physical than Rhodes and Waynes were, and Wilson hasn't really taken a step forward since Gedeon went out last year. If the pursuit is lacking, there's a risk that any missed tackle will get taken to the house, especially by Taylor who's big and fast. I think the Vikings offense will put up some yards and points against a decent but not great Colts defense (with what seems to be a vulnerable secondary, given what Minshew did last week). Probably turns into something of a shootout, and the Vikings will need a couple of big plays off turnovers or returns to come out on top.
  3. You're quoting RpMc's roster there, FWIW. I appreciate that you (among others) thought it was possible or even likely before the game that Samia might not have been active for week one. It was a totally reasonable idea. They might have activated Jones so they had a backup who could play any position. But now, after the game, when Jones was left on the practice squad and Samia was active as the only backup IOL, I think that projection didn't hold up. The Vikings were evidently comfortable with Samia active and Jones inactive, or they would have managed the roster differently for that game. So in retrospect, it's obvious that Samia was the first choice backup IOL for week one. And there's no reasonable (non-alternative universe) scenario where they would have made a different decision last Sunday, regardless of whether 7 OL or 8 OL were dressed. I'm sorry if this discussion is upsetting for you. I wasn't trying to rile you up. I like analyzing how the Vikings approach their roster, so discussions like this are interesting to me. I do think it's possible to make sense of most of their decisions (at least in their intent, if not the final result). I'm willing to explain my reasoning and defend it, but it's not meant to be a personal attack on you. Hopefully Samia doesn't live down to our fears and plays well tomorrow. We could use some good news at guard for a change.
  4. LOL I actually wrote a line that went something like "Is this a butterfly effect thing? The universe is so mysteriously unknowable that anything might have happened if the initial circumstances were different?" ...but I deleted it because it seemed too snarky. I'm sorry man, I like to discuss things that are actually happening with the football team I follow, not hypothetical scenarios that might happen in alternative universes. In the real world, Dru Samia started the season as the Vikings first choice backup IOL. Of course, all sorts of things might have changed that fact (maybe Covid doesn't change the roster rules and only 7 OL are active, or maybe Mr and Mrs Samia never meet and Dru isn't even born, Back to the Future style, who knows), but it was actually a fact.
  5. What do you think Samia's chances of being active for last week's game would have been, given what we know of the Vikings roster, if only 7 OL had been active? I say it was 100%. If you'd say less than that, what 2 backup OL do you think would have been active instead?
  6. You said I read that as saying, "if it weren't for the new game day roster rules, Samia might have been inactive". I think that's a fair interpretation, since when I replied that Samia would have been active even under last year's system you said I don't think that's accurate. Samia was the only active backup IOL for the Packers game. He was evidently their first choice to be in that position. If they wanted someone else "with more versatility", they would have had that player active instead. I have no idea how you can imagine that having 8 OL active, not 7, would have changed that decision. The Vikings were always going to have at least one backup interior OL active for the game, whether they dressed 7 OL or 8 OL in total. If they only dressed 7 OL for the Packers game, do you think there was a possibility that they would've had Hill and Udoh active, but not Samia or any other backup IOL? Or are you saying that with 7 OL, Hill and Cleveland (the only other IOL on the roster) would have been active and Samia inactive? If there's no reasonable version of the Vikings roster last week where they don't dress a backup IOL, and Samia is the first choice backup IOL, weren't his chances of being active 100% no matter how many OL were active?
  7. The Packers had a better record than the Vikings in 2019, won the division and both head to head games, and went one round further in the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Vikings had a better points differential (by 41 points) and therefore expected win rate (10.6 to 9.7), better DVOA (by over 10% -- 7th ranked GB was closer to 16th ranked ATL than to 5th ranked MIN), and better team PFF grades. GB clearly deserved the division because of the head-to-head wins, but they weren't much better than the Vikings overall, and they were arguably worse in some ways. The 13-3 record wasn't a fraud, but it was somewhat flattering. If any concerned Packers fans want to worry themselves about how the Vikings will ever rebuild their shambles of a defense, I invite you to consider your own defense, which wasn't very good last year (9th in points allowed despite an easy schedule, 15th in DVOA), got embarrassed in the Niners game, and got off to a bad start this year (26th in points allowed, 30th in DVOA, and last in yards/play, after week one). However big of a "beat down" that game was, it wasn't much credit to the Packers defense. There's one reason why the Packers won so many close games last year including a playoff game against an elite QB, and blew out the Vikings in week one despite allowing 34 points. It's not the defense, or the OL, or the receiver depth or the coaching. It's Aaron Rodgers. You guys were singing a very different tune about Rodgers just a week ago, and even more so right after the draft. Rodgers was basically perfect in week one, but that was in ideal conditions (no pressure, no coverage, no crowd noise). His performance has been met with surprise or even shock, but the truth is he's continued to put up elite games all the way along, even last year with the blowout over the Raiders and the playoff win vs Seattle. The problem is that he hasn't been able to sustain that level of performance, and his non-elite games have been getting worse and happening more often. Rodgers turns 37 this year. Maybe his age 37-40 seasons will somehow be better than his age 32-36 seasons, but that isn't likely. More realistically, at some point in the next 4 years, Packers fans will be wanting to see what Love can do as the starter. On the day when Packers fans finally have to cheer for a team whose QB is only very good on his best day, they'll have a new appreciation for how good or bad the Packers front office, coaches, and non-QB roster really are.
  8. Hey I was there too. Opposite end zone, don't remember what row but nosebleed seats (best we could get through a tour company from Canada). There was something like 10 seconds left in the half and the Vikings were 3rd and long on their own side of midfield. Culpepper danced around before throwing deep to Moss, sort of like a Hail Mary but well short of the end zone. Moss made the catch surrounded by Broncos, so it didn't look like he'd score. The play seemed to take forever even as Culpepper launched the throw, so my first thought as Moss came down with it was to look to the game clock and see if there was time left to call timeout and kick a FG. I glanced over and as I glanced back the crowd roared -- Moss had just lateraled to Moe Williams. I didn't actually see the lateral itself and from behind him I didn't realize at first that Williams had the ball, until he held it up as he high stepped into the end zone. I was sitting next to my dad, who's legally blind (low vision, not completely blind) and he didn't understand what happened either from that distance, through binoculars. We didn't react until my brother on the other side of him yelled something like what a lateral and we all went crazy. They were unbeaten after that game, I think the best record in the league at that point. The memory of the high scoring teams from 1998-2001 wasn't far off, and it seemed like they were back as a contender. Of course the year fell apart and they lost 7 of their last 10, including 4 games to the 4 worst teams in the league (all of whom finished 4-12 and started their backup QBs vs the Vikings), the last of which was the famous Josh McCown play in Arizona.
  9. I don’t appreciate your personal comments about me. It’s not “noncontroversial” to say Samia would’ve been inactive last week under the older roster rules. The Vikings have at least one backup interior OL in every game. There was only one backup IOL on the roster last week (unless you count Cleveland as the other). That was Samia, and he was active for the week one game. There was no scenario where Samia would have been inactive if only 7 OL had dressed for the game. Jones wasn’t on the roster, so he wasn’t an option. So Samia didn’t only get activated because of the new roster rules.
  10. Yeah, not sure Cleveland is even still practicing at guard.
  11. You could literally say that about every team in the league. What does the Packers roster look like in a few years if Gary, Savage and Sternberger don't develop, or Jordan Love doesn't turn into a franchise QB? The Vikings are paying fair contracts to a bunch of blue chip players, most of them in their primes. Barr is the only one who's arguably overpaid, plus Cook if you don't believe in paying running backs. Smith is 31 but his game is aging well so he may have a few years left. Rudolph and Thielen will age out before long but they already have Smith and Jefferson on board. The question with the roster is whether the young CBs will be any good (so far: no), and whether they can finally build a decent OL.
  12. Sure we know. Samia is the only backup IOL on the roster unless you count Cleveland as a guard. They weren’t going to go into the game with Hill and Udoh as the only active backup OL, when neither of them have played anything but tackle in the NFL. The 8th OL active was the 2nd backup tackle, not the 1st backup IOL.
  13. I think it’s as much of a coaching / development problem as purely to do with player selection. They’ve drafted a variety of athletic profiles with different levels of college success, including a number of prospects who graded very well in college and/or won awards, but most of them have disappointed, some of them dramatically so compared to expectations (Elflein most recently, Clemmings was another one). Packers fans may not realize how bad the OL play has gotten across the league in recent years, and how rare it is for a team these days to be able to plug in late round or UDFA talent and get solid performances in pass blocking. Packers OL development is mostly a string of unbroken successes except for Spriggs and weird outliers like Madison. I think that has a lot more to do with coaching than the idea that say Jon Runyon is a particularly elite prospect that no one happened to notice until round 6. Next to Rodgers being able to elevate his game to elite when it matters, the OL (itself helped by Rodgers being the best pocket managing QB I’ve ever seen) is the next best reason the Packers have been so consistently good. They were OK in 2009, and pretty good in 2017 at least at pass blocking, until late in the year when injuries started to pile up. They had a good OL around 2012-13 with some homegrown talent in its prime (Kalil, Loadholt, Sullivan, Fusco) but that was wasted on Ponder. Of course with the Vikings luck, all of those players had career altering injuries or chronic problems (Kalil’s knees) and were either out of the league well before 30 (Loadholt was 28 in his last year) or only played well again years later (Sullivan had one last good year with the Rams). That talent drain led to the fiasco of 2015-16, from which they’re still trying to rebuild. They do have some decent young talent now, the question is just whether Bradbury, Cleveland etc will turn into busts like Elflein or better players like O’Neill.
  14. Samia would’ve been active last week under the old roster rules — he was the only backup IOL active for that game.
  15. Cook, Rudolph, Reiff and Elflein were all added before the 2017 NFCCG and before Cousins. The additions since 2018 on offense were a mid-1st OL (Bradbury) and later-1st WR (Jefferson), three mid to late 2nds at OL and TE (O’Neill, Smith Jr, Cleveland) and the last pick of the 2019 3rd round on RB, Mattison (who went outside the top 100 picks, not exactly a premium investment). That’s not much draft capital in 3 offseasons especially since they had an extra first round pick from trading Diggs. Aside from swapping in a new WR for Diggs, the big project had been trying (and so far mostly failing) to rebuild the OL, which has been mostly terrible since injuries hit in 2015-16. I don’t think the OL picks were a dumb investment for a team trying to build a contender, or one that has much of anything to do with Cousins specifically. They didn’t invest in any outside FAs on offense since signing Cousins, whose cap number was under 13% in 2018 (12.6%) and 2020 (10.6%). This season Cousins takes up the same percentage of the cap as Bradford got in 2017 when you seem to think the Vikings were spending “pennies” at QB. In those 3 years, Rudolph got extended, Diggs got extended and traded, Reiff took a pay cut, Remmers was released, and Cook got extended for 2021 onwards, though that so far has had minimal cap effect. Over the same time frame, the Vikings investments on defense were two late-1sts (Hughes and Gladney) and a mid-3rd (Dantzler) at corner, a comparable investment to GB drafting King, Alexander and Jackson within a couple of years. They paid homegrown players in Hunter, Kendricks and Barr — all in their prime and at or near the top of their positions — and kept Harris for his RFA year, then on the franchise tag. They paid solid contracts to Richardson for a year and Pierce for 3 years, though Pierce’s opt out means he won’t see the field for the Vikings until next year. And they traded a future 2nd and 5th for Ngakoue, who’s making $12M this year and will likely command a blue chip salary going forward. Despite (over)paying for Cousins, MIN has devoted more cap space to the defense than the offense every year since 2018: $93M vs $84M in ‘18, $92M vs $86M in ‘19, and $87M vs $77M this year. You might want to wait a month or two, or even a year or so, before writing off the Vikings completely. The defense was terrible in week one, but they were expected to struggle early, and they probably do have enough talent and coaching to develop into a decent unit before long. The main reason the game was a blowout was that Rodgers was back to his god-level best — a mere mortal QB wouldn’t have made a bunch of those throws so perfectly, and the game would’ve been much closer. Not sure you’ll ever appreciate what you’ve got in Rodgers until he’s gone, but he’s still the main reason GB wins so many games, and by far the biggest difference between our two otherwise fairly similarly constructed teams.
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